Do you want to live your life to the fullest?

If we only have one life to live, then why not make it an awesome one? Why do we get stuck in the traps of existence where we seem to settle for what scraps life will throw us, then complain when it doesn’t throw us things we like?!

Maybe we don’t know any better, or maybe you’re like me and there’s a subconscious belief that we don’t really deserve the best. Perhaps society has given you the impression that you are somehow second rate.

Here are a few of the factors in my life that made me view myself this way:

• I was an illegitimate child in an era when it wasn’t well accepted
• I wasn’t from a wealthy family and didn’t have the nice home, clothes and things that others had
• I was plain looking and shy
• We moved a lot and I was always the new kid who felt like they didn’t belong

I ‘know’ in my mind that those things shouldn’t matter but those prejudices still lurk under the surface of my psyche. Maybe like me, you’ve fallen a little ‘out of love’ with yourself. There are many things I need to forgive myself for. I have habits and behaviour patterns that I don’t admire. I have regrets that I’ve wasted too much of my life on worthless things. When my granddaughter does something wrong she calls herself a ‘Stupid Head’. We tell her not to say that about herself and that we all make mistakes, but I think I feel like a Stupid Head sometimes too!

I was thinking today about the life I really want. I was thinking of how to coerce myself into getting off my butt and doing the things I need to do to make that happen. I thought of how I’m willing to go out of my way to do things for those I love. I realized that I do a lot to care for the well being of my husband, children and grandchild. Then I had to stop and ask ‘Do I love myself?’ If I don’t love myself in the healthy way I should, then how can I start?

I remembered a picture of myself around my granddaughter’s age. I thought of the hopes and dreams of that child and the things I used to love to do. I felt affection for that child and a spark of love for myself. It’s hard not to love little children. We forgive them easily even when they drive us crazy. We want the best for them. We all want children everywhere to have the best life they can. They deserve it.

Let’s all look at the child in ourselves and try to give them what they deserve. The adult that we are might need a kick in the pants, but really, if we’re going to change, we need to start loving and forgiving ourselves. Love inspires hard work and sacrifice. We need to help that little child in us fulfil their dreams because they deserve the best.

Hint: Here’s a crazy idea – Try putting a picture of yourself as a child on the fridge or somewhere you will see it to help remind you to make that child’s dreams come true. Dang, you were cute weren’t you?!

Here is cute, lovable past me:

Mini Noella