coffee cup breakfast

Massages, meditation, manicures can help us with our well-being. But how much of the damage we do to ourselves physically, emotionally and spiritually comes from our everyday actions and interactions with those around us?

After a very hectic 2018 being a busy mother of 3 active kids, running a household and multiple businesses (don’t even ask), I started the new year questioning why I had embraced a hectic life and how could I make things more pleasant in 2019.

There was the usual plan to schedule time out for a regular massage, a weekend away with girlfriends, and even delegating more housework to my 3 kids who are old enough to chip in more than they have been.

But something still didn’t feel right to me about my plans for a less stressful and more enjoyable year.

And it all became clearer one morning after I burnt toast.

It was a busy morning getting the kids’ breakfast ready and organizing everything before taking them to school. In my haste, I left the toaster up too high and the bread burnt.

Rather than throw the burnt toast in the bin, I decided to eat it. I didn’t have the time to cook more toast for myself or make something else before dashing out the door with my family.

And that’s when it hit me: my decision to eat burnt toast reflected my self-worth.

toast in a toaster

I didn’t think I was worth the time and effort to make myself more toast. I accepted that burnt toast was all I was going to get.

This made me think about other ways I had reflected my self-worth in my everyday life without realizing it:

Eating the kids’ leftover dinner rather than dishing up a meal for myself.

Forgoing a haircut in favor of buying my kids a new pair of jeans.

Volunteering my time instead of working in my business.

Wearing socks with holes instead of buying a new pair.

Getting into a heated discussion on social media instead of reading a book.

Each of these small decisions projected my self-worth. I didn’t feel I was worthy of a haircut and new socks. I didn’t feel I was worthy of spending time reading a book. These actions were all akin to the burnt toast metaphor.

How could I expect to have a less stressful and more enjoyable year if I didn’t focus on changing my behavior?

I though I had high self-worth. I thought I loved myself. But scheduling massages, having a daily meditation practice and visiting a spa retreat were only temporary solutions. I had to show high self-worth daily through my actions and decisions.

I’ve made some changes to my daily routine and behaviour to reflect a higher self-worth, and so far my year has been more pleasant.

Here’s what I’ve done:

-Asked a friend to help drive my kids to their sporting events

-Asked my kids to do more chores around the house

-Grocery shopped once or twice a week instead of going multiple times each day

-Made myself a healthy lunch each day and sat down to eat it- no eating on the run!

-Outsourcing some of my business tasks to a Virtual Assistant.

-I bought new socks! And threw out the ones with holes.

These may seem like small and trivial gestures, but if you’re someone who cares about self-worth you’ll know that it’s the small things that truly are the big things. If we’re not thinking about self-worth in everything that we do, then we’re really cheating ourselves.

And who likes the taste of burnt toast anyway?