Put Your Own Oxygen Mask On First

One of the things we’re probably all guilty of is the ‘should’. We should do this, you should do that (you shouldn’t do that) we push it onto ourselves and onto others and even when we’re on the journey to finding happiness and love for ourselves we do it. I’ve been talking things over a lot with the people around me which is amazing, everyone is on their own journey and at different stages in their life and people want to share and guide and support and it’s amazing, if not at times, a little overwhelming if you try to take too much of it in if you’re like me!  

A brilliant line from Baz Luhrmann Everybody’s Free to Wear Sunscreen (I told you I loved this song!) is; 

Be Careful whose advice you buy, but, be patient with those who supply it. Advice is a form of nostalgia, dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it’s worth.  

If this doesn’t resonate with you first time, read it again. Listen to the song, read it again, come back to it later or tomorrow or whenever you can. And one day it’ll click like it did for me, I think it’s so incredibly powerful and I can even see myself when I do this at times which is an eye opener. 

But more recently on my journey of seeking happiness I’ve been reading a lot and listening to things and I find myself saying oh you should be more like ‘this’ Megs, maybe for an example ‘be more relaxed Megs’, don’t over think things Megs (yes 100% I need to calm my overthinking mind when it runs away with me as it tortures me sometimes but that’s a different point). What I mean is even overthinking on even small things, telling myself not to be so organised, “over organised” as others may say, not to dream too much, stay grounded, which is all true. What I found through this is that strive we have as humans to achieve so much, expecting overnight changes and results even subconsciously and striving to be a model of person that is so idealistic that it actually becomes counter productive to what you’re trying to achieve.  

Through my strive to improve my life and my mental health I find I pressure myself to do all of these things because they’re ‘good for my journey’ or ‘a good lesson to learn’  but sometimes I just need a day off! Stop. Breath. Take it in. Don’t analyse and self-critise every little thing you do, that’s the extreme of the other end of the scale. Allow yourself time, it will come. Prioritise and pursue the most important first. Give yourself a break.  

I listened to a podcast of my two favourite people last week (Deliciously Ella and Fearne Cotton in one podcast!!) and they talked about happiness. They said; 

Happiness is a constant working process, for every second of every day of our lives we have to be conscious of this. We have to have a level of ‘discipline’ to help us create that sense of balance that allows that feeling of happiness.  

Nobody wants to that any kind of happiness, contentment or feeling requires discipline, but it does. 

We have to accept that happiness comes and goes and that’s just normal. We need to remember that there is no destination, nothing that will create our ultimate idea of happiness, not a new job, a new car, a holiday, this is all a myth that we believe and accidently aspire to.  

It’s all part of the journey, I’ve done it to myself this last week or two, wanted too much of myself, expected too much too fast and it overwhelmed me to the point of a constant mild anxious feeling. I do want to improve myself, by this I mean mentally, I want to improve my thoughts and feelings towards me and others and I want to make my head a happy place to live. But I have to accept the journey is long and I can’t expect miracles overnight, and that’s ok! 

There’s no big insight or major point to this ramble, it just hit me while I was tidying a giant pile of washing away and I’m literally sat at the top of the stairs (feeling a bit guilty as I can hear Dan doing his share of the chores in the kitchen while I slack off from mine) scribbling this down in my phone, I only sat down to make a note and several minutes later I’m here with this ramble with a millions spelling mistakes that I’ll correct later but I had to get this down. I had to get it out of my head! I’m intending to start reading The Power Of Now and writing to my inner voice like a good friend of mine talks a lot about doing for self-healing. For now I think this helps.  

So I’m sharing this post today just in case there’s anyone else out there on this crazy wonderful journey to self-love and happiness that gets scared and anxious and overwhelmed through the sheer volume of wanting to do good and share good and from peoples support. If there’s even one person who this helps feel less alone then great. If not then writing this down helped me make a tiny bit more sense of some of it and created some space in my head.

Writing down what has been going round in my head for about a week, writing it down has helped me review it from another angle, even though I’ve talked it over with people it’s not the same. So, if nobody ever takes anything from this it’s helped me nonetheless and that’s ultimately my main goal. I have to help me before I can help anybody else. 

As I was once told, and something that will never leave me..You have to put your own oxygen mask on first.