42 Ways to Figure Out What’s Important to You | Love List

Helping people feel good about themselves and finding new ways to do it is important to me. So in case you’ve been wondering why there are small changes with every message, that’s why. It was also important to me that I figure out the right name for posts like this one. And after several name changes, I am happy to say that I finally landed on the perfect on! The purpose of this post is for me to get personal like I do in the Operation Love U posts by sharing ideas for how to make the message work for you. I write each message to work for you so what better way to end the series than with a Love U List?! *squeals*

Love U List | How do you figure out what's important to you? By doing what works for you, feeling your feelings, and enjoying your favorite things!

42 Ways to Figure Out What’s Important to You

Do what works.

A few years ago, I set two bedtime alarms: one for 10:30pm and another for 11:30pm. The first let me know it was time to get ready for bed and the second let me know I should be in bed. After a while, I ended up removing the 11:30pm alarm because I’d gotten so good at sticking to my nightly routine that it kept waking me up! Another thing I did was to stop watching any intense TV shows after 10pm.

That’s right. I don’t watch ANY of the popular shows live! Instead, I watch them on the weekend or when they get added to Netflix. Even when I’m binge watching, I try to be mindful of the time. A couple years ago, I also stopped watching certain shows after dark*. That day, I watched 5 hours of Law & Order: SVU and stopped at 10pm like I was supposed to. I had also read a lot of real-life murder news the days leading up to it. (It was a really sad week.) After getting in bed and free writing for a little while**, I turned my lamp off. I don’t know what it was but something about the click and the darkness brought every episode and story back into my head at once. I couldn’t breathe and along with it came the anxiety-driven thought that someone would climb up on my balcony and break in as I also remembered in that moment that I had forgotten to close and lock my balcony door.

I immediately turned the light back on and jumped out of bed. I closed and locked the balcony door and checked every room (and its closet). It took me about an hour to calm down and be able to breathe normally again. I stopped watching crime dramas for months. But I love crime dramas so I eventually started watching them (and even binge watching) but I no longer watch Law & Order SVU. It hasn’t happened since. I learned that everything I do right before bed is extremely important to my physical, mental and emotional wellbeing***. Pay attention to your needs and do what works for you:

  • Set boundaries
  • Try new things
  • Listen to your body
  • Explore your beliefs
  • Set your own goals
  • Use your gifts
  • Do your own research
  • Find your way to do things
  • Accept that everyone is different
  • Stop bad habits
  • Be flexible
  • Track your successes
  • Start small

Feel your feelings.

Note: This is not a sponsored post. I just like what I like. 🙂
In “Stop Being Mean” I talked about how I adjusted my circle of friends because I didn’t feel I could go to all my friend about things that were bothering me. I also often felt wrong for feeling how I felt so sometimes I think I would just try to hold things in so as not to seem “too emotional”.

Today, I’m Team “Cry It Out” and Team “Your Feelings Are Valid”. But I still needed help with feeling out of control so I’ve gotten into using herbal teas and, most recently, gemstones****. In September, a friend sent me a promo code for Headspace. I had tried meditation before and it didn’t quite click for me but I am always for trying something again in a new way so I signed up. I don’t know if I was just in a better headspace (get it) or just the fact that the founder makes a point to explain why we’re doing certain exercises but I have grown to love meditation in the 2 months I’ve committed to it. It took me most of that time to get used to doing it daily (weekends kept throwing me off) but overtime, I began looking forward to it each day and it became less of a chore.

I tend to tense up my back and shoulder and I’m a bit of a wild sleeper so sometimes I wake up with back pain. One of the first things I noticed was that when I woke up with pain, it went away after my meditation session. As of the writing of this post, I’ve even notice feeling calmer and happier without much effort. And most importantly, when something upset me, I was able use what I’d learned about mindfulness to feel how I felt and then to let the frustration go much faster as opposed to letting it ruin my whole day. Using Headspace is helping me gain control of my anxiety through mindfulness. It is important to me to actually deal with my anxiety (and my feelings) rather than try to get rid of it. Allow yourself to feel your feelings by doing things like:

  • Start a journal
  • Release tension (cry/workout)
  • Find a cause you believe in
  • Make some “me” time
  • Spend time in the mirror
  • Smile whenever you feel like it
  • Get comfortable
  • Be honest with yourself
  • Learn to let go
  • Believe in yourself
  • Be yourself
  • Meditate
  • Ask for help

Enjoy your favorites.

On Tuesday, June 14, 2016, Beyonce’s Formation tour came to Detroit! I was excited about this day for months because I love Beyoncé and I was going with a friend who had never seen her live before. When I found out DJ Khaled was the opening act, I was even more excited because I love Khaled and I looked forward to who he’d bring out. In preparation for the concert, I made a point to take that day off so I could relax and conserve my energy for Queen Bey. I picked up my friend and we went downtown early so we could eat before the concert. We needed to be relaxed AND nourished before the show. DJ Khaled started his session with a mix I’d seen on his Snapchat before bringing out Dej Loaf. When she left, he coyly hinted at the identity of his next guest before the beat dropped. It went something like this:
[“Dey Know” beat drops]
Me: Shawty Lo*****?…………….THIS MIGHT BE THE REMIX!
[Jeezy walks out]
Me: *lets out a full body scream*
I love Beyonce. I love Jeezy. I was there to see one of my faves and one of my other faves walked out. I was not prepared. That scream I let out was reserved for Bey but LAWD IF I DON’T LOVE THAT MAN! Jeezy is bae and his voice makes me happy. When I’m listening to his music, I swear I just moved all the grams. I mean, I probably just finished a project at work or wrote one of the posts you’ve read but it’s all the same, TBH.

Also, because I talk about how much I love Jeezy so much, I’ve gotten other people to listen and appreciate him (almost) as much as I do! Now, whenever they see something about him or hear one of his songs, they think of me. And you know what? I love it! It shows me they’re thinking of me. It shows me that I’m bringing them joy while they bring me joy. It’s a joyful catch 22! It’s great to hear, “Hey, I’m thinking of you.” It’s even better to hear, “Hey, your fav reminds me of you and makes me happy too!” So it’s important to me that I keep the things I love and enjoy nearby. Enjoy your favs as much as possible:

  • Treat yo’ self
  • Travel where ever your faves are
  • Listen to your fave artists
  • Find a new fave thing
  • Revamp your fave hairstyle
  • Wear your fave clothing/jewelry
  • Bookmark your fave blogs/sites
  • Make a list of things you love
  • Recite your fave quote
  • Watch you fave movies/shows
  • Decorate with your fave color
  • Study your fave artwork/artists
  • Collect your fave color

If you take anything from this post, it should be that the boundaries you set are important. Your feelings and how you deal with them are important. And the things that you love are important. What is important to you is important. YOU are important (read it now if you haven’t already)!

How have you figured out what’s important to you? Be sure to let me know in the comments.

Give yourself the love you deserve with a Self Love Check-In! Every Sunday, you’ll get A Letter to U (from you) and downloadable color cards to use for your needs.

*I already didn’t watch certain shows after dark but I became more deliberate about it.
**I have been free writing almost every night since I was 12. My brain is a marathon for thoughts and it is the only thing that consistently calms my brain enough to allow me to fall asleep.
***Yes, I had a panic attack.
****I laugh at the fact that gemstones are a recent thing for me because they basically work in the same way that color energy does LOL!
****Rest In Peace Shawty Lo.

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