Edit to add: Once again, I’m linking up with Julia’s Mental Health Mondays. Be sure to check out everyone else’s stories!
Moments before sunrise on a Wednesday, you wake up, roll over, and scroll sleepily through Instagram. Usually the #wcw posts incite your inspiration and envy. But today is different. Today, you decide, “I’m the bomb dot com, I’m going to be my own woman crush today.”
….Little do you know that you just made your whole day. Here’s ten reasons to crush on yourself this Wednesday.
You resist the snooze button (the second time).
Sleeping in may feel good for ten minutes, but a stressful morning colors an entire day. Even if you’re not down for 6 AM spin or sunrise yoga, an extra ten minutes will help you breathe before a busy day.
On the way to the train, you don’t get that fancy Starbucks concoction.
No morning macchiato? What kind of #womancrushwednesday is this?
(Coffee)pot calling the kettle black here, but each Starbucks stop saps funds from that potential vacation, new camera, or fancy spin class.
Since you’re practicing self-love and not self-deprivation, though, you balance your caffeine fix with cutbacks elsewhere. Maybe you settle for black coffee instead of the specialty drinks. Downgrading from a $5.25 Salted Caramel Mocha Frappe to a large black coffee can net you over $500 over the course of a year. That’s a budget vacation, a few Lulu shopping sprees, or an additional 401(k) contribution, all of which last longer than that temporary energy boost.
You don’t spend the whole commute on your phone.
Silence turns up the volume on our thoughts, whether good or bad. To distract yourself from your doubts, you retreat to your phone screen. Social media alone isn’t a symptom of self-hatred, but it distracts from necessary self-reflection. However, you can appreciate the additional alone time if you don’t spend it agonizing over your outfit or to-do list. Whether you repeat a few affirmations or plan a fun weekend, this proactive strategy kickstarts a pattern of positivity to continue throughout the day.
You go out for lunch with the intern.
Sweating out that one spreadsheet, you’re settling in for a sad desk lunch when your favorite intern stops by. Panera? Yesterday, you’d have turned her down in favor of a fourth round of editing. But today, you separate from your screen and stretch your legs. Not only do you relax your mind, but you reconnect with one of your office friends. And upon returning to that spreadsheet, your refreshed mind more than makes up for any lost time.
You sign up for that stretch project.
At an afternoon meeting, your boss alludes to an assignment in that exotic location on your Pinterest travel board. Beyond the bomb location, the project’s responsibilities promise intrigue and challenge. You want to ask your boss about travel arrangements and comp time, but you’re questioning your own capabilities instead. What if I can’t handle the responsibility? What if I represent the company badly? What if. What if. What if.
Without the internal confidence necessary to recover from potential setbacks, every risk is a referendum on your personal worth. Thus, you opt for certain monotony over potential advancement and excitement. But once you stop relying on external achievements for validation, you shift from a prevention to promotion focus. You play to win instead of playing not to lose.
Though you still appraise situations and plan worst-case scenarios, you’re no longer paralyzed by your planning and passivity. No longer satisfied with the status quo, your confidence informs your pursuit of your dreams.
Made a mistake? You own it and move on.
Despite your double checks, you missed a glaring typo in a big presentation. Ouch. On another day, it would eat at your esteem. “How could I be so stupid?” you’d ask yourself.
Assured of your abilities, though, you perceive your mistake as an aberration rather than an attack on your self worth. Divorcing yourself from your ego, you can identify constructive advice among the criticism, apply it to your work, and mobilize your mistake as a learning opportunity.
As a result, you’re more empathetic.
So you busted your ass to get that time-sensitive thing to your manager by noon. At 6, though, you’re still waiting on her OK while Happy Hour starts without you. Before you blast your boss for her procrastination, you separate yourself from your emotions to consider her perspective. “After all, she probably doesn’t want to be in the office at 6 either,” you rationalize. Maybe your manager is being blindsided this week. Maybe her productivity is being limited by personal concerns. And OK, maybe she just totally forgot about you.
After we acknowledge and accept our own flaws, we’re more likely to empathize with others. By expecting and tolerations imperfections in others, we not only strengthen our relationships with others but relieve our own anxiety.
But you maintain your boundaries.
Ironically, your self-confidence also places limits on your empathy. Prioritizing your personal health over pleasing others, you set and stand by your core “non-negotiable” values. So if the unplanned late nights repeat themselves, if your manager doesn’t value your flexibility, if you’re checking work emails on Sunday, you update your resume without guilt.
After hours, you treat yourself.
Second-guessing every decision and sentence is super exhausting. And after eight hours, we turn to comfy couches and crappy TV for recovery. Alleviating this stress, though, preserves our energy for other areas of our lives. Like you would any other crush, treat yourself during this time. Sometimes it’s wining and dining a new friend (or just yourself). Sometimes it’s working on your side hustle. And sometimes, it’s just Netflix and chill.
Regardless of how you choose to spend your time, though, you cut through the opinions of others to commit yourself to your ideal vision of life.
And your Wednesday is way better!
Instead of wishing your Wednesday away for the weekend, you reconciled your responsibilities with your relationships. Lying in bed that night, you reflect on that impending international trips, lessons learned, and good conversations. And as you drift toward sleep, you anticipate an even better tomorrow.
So swipe right on yourself today. After all, self-love has a 100% success rate.