“What Do I Need?”

It’s such a fundamental question. It should be simple and innate… The answers should be understood, acted upon, respected…

But for a lot of us (umm, HI!), this is a question that has been become disregarded and even ignored. Somehow along the journey, needs became self-indulgent and selfish. We learned to measure ourselves as more or less than others.

I’m re-learning to hear and honor my needs as important, because for years, I taught myself that they were not worthy. I put others first, I seek to please. I taught myself to be small, so that others may shine.

And now I am confronted with the challenge of expansion, of growing out of my smallness and stepping into my truth. I’m working to loosen the rules, constriction, and restriction I have on myself. And I am learning to stand, full-figured and tall, accepting that I have needs, that I have hunger, and it is nothing to stifle, hide, or fear.

And it’s really hard.

But here are the lessons I am coming to terms with:

-Satisfying your needs is not selfish or indulgent. It is a necessary practice towards self-awareness and acceptance.

-By honoring your needs you practice honoring yourself. Your needs, physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual are valid and worthy of recognition and communication. You are worthy of recognition.

-Your needs are equally important as everyone else’s – not less and not more. By fulfilling your own needs, you are better able to see and respect the needs of others.

Can you relate? Are these lessons, you also are learning to accept?

Here are three 3 ways I’ve practiced honoring my needs:

1. Check in.
Pause, and simply ask, “What do I need?” Listen without judgement, and honor your intuitive response. Maybe it’s a glass of water, a break, movement, or maybe it’s recognition for hard work, prayer, connection, or alone time. The more you listen to and act upon your needs, the better you will become at hearing them.

2. Be kind in communication.
Remember, by acting upon your needs, you are not communicating that your needs are more important, but equally important. Speak confidently and listen openly when your needs are not being heard.

3. Use your journal.
Use the pages of your journal to reflect upon and write down your needs focusing especially on those which you find challenging to respect and satisfy. Pay attention to the feelings that come up and resistance you feel towards meeting your needs, and dig deeper into what holds you back.

Use these prompts for journaling inspiration….

What do I need_

You are worthy, you are enough.

“It’s not selfish to put yourself first – it’s self-full.” -Iyanla Vanzant

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