I’m of the belief that if we don’t take time to connect with ourselves then we have nothing left to give to connect with others. Too often we get spread thin across all the ‘things to do’ on our personal lists and we’re being asked to do more at work with less resources, pressure builds up, bodies run down, and you end up either snapping at a loved one, or getting sick.
But what if you valued yourself enough, you felt important to yourself that you committed some time to connect with yourself first in order then to have the energy and the desire to connect with others.
When I experienced PND after the birth of my son Levi, I went to an 8 week course for PND depressed women run through a hospital. I remember clearly this one day where the facilitator drew a picture of a coffee urn on the whiteboard, (just picture a group of new mothers with depression in a classroom setting sitting student style at desks taking notes...bizarre I know), anyway this woman was talking about a coffee urn and I’m afraid my apathy was prevalent and I thought ‘what is she on about, I don’t even drink coffee!’ Still the analogy was to think of ourselves as coffee urns (not a particularly attractive image post birth) but a coffee urn that needs constant refilling every time you give away a ‘cup of coffee’ in other words a piece of yourself.
If you don’t re-fill it as you go along you eventually end up down the bottom of the coffee pot ‘running on the dregs’. Everyone familiar with what the ‘dregs of coffee’ are? Good, like I said I have no idea about coffee, but I did get the picture, very clearly, that if I do not ‘fill myself up’ in other words ‘restore myself’ then I would end up running on empty, living off the dregs… every woman in that room was living off the dregs at that time (and probably living on coffee in order to cope).
So today, I ask you are you running on the dregs? Are you taking time to connect with yourself, with the things you love to do or see in order that you can continue to connect with others, with your work, your family, friends, your community?