The next day was Monday, and our official scheduled phone session. That morning was a disaster for me. These apartments can lock from the inside, which creates a problem when you’re especially scatterbrained like I was feeling. I had an appointment at 10am, but ran out of the apartment leaving the keys on the kitchen counter, and locking the door behind me. As soon as I was outside I realized what I’d done. My apartment and car keys are all on the same ring, so I couldn’t even drive to my appointment and then figure out what to do. Luckily I still had my phone, so I was able to google a locksmith to come let me back in, but this took over an hour until they even got out. I had to cancel my appointment, and the locksmith let me back into my apartment at 11:58, precisely two minutes to spare before my phone appointment with TC.
So of course I was still a little frazzled when I called her. I told her about my hectic morning. It just seemed like a continuation of Sunday’s chaos. “I just don’t know what’s going on with me and mornings anymore,” I said.
Well, TC did. “You need to slow down, and take care of yourself,” she said. “This is a sign. You being this scatterbrained, starting to forget things and feeling frazzled like you are, this means you’re not taking care of yourself, and it’s wearing you out. The number one lesson I want you to take away from today’s session is self-care. And this lends itself to other things that you want to work on as well. Once you’re taking care of yourself properly, you feel good. When you feel good, you have more self confidence. When you have more self confidence you are naturally more assertive. Do you understand where I’m going with this?”
Yes, of course, now that she said it, it made perfect sense. We went over the Tolerations Checklist that she’d given me the previous week, and I had been filling out. I was surprised how many tolerations I’d already taken care of. I’d told my friend kindly, but assertively that I needed to be left alone for a while and she’d understood. I’d told my other friend to stop making snide comments if he wanted to stay my friend, and he apologized. I’d been giving myself more time and space to myself, and so on.
“So now you’ve located the cracks in your teacup, and you’re repairing them, so your life energy doesn’t keep draining out.”
Sure, this made sense. I have to take care of myself before I can feel strong enough to protect my standards and boundaries, or even take care of other people.
“So your homework for this week is taking care of yourself,” TC told me. “This is your exercise this week. Whatever you do, before you do it, ask yourself first: is this going to drain my energy, or give me energy? With everything you do.”
Our hour was up, and I hung up thinking this was going to be slightly challenging for me, but good. As I mentioned previously, I had been brought up by a very 50’s house-wife style mom. Though she tried to have me turn out without that baggage, independent and modern and all that, of course she couldn’t help passing those old 50’s habits on to me. So I was very used to thinking about and helping other people. But myself? Down to measuring each activity I do on whether it will make me feel good or not? However, this was obviously something I didn’t know how to do, and it would be good for me. As TC had explained, taking care of myself was the first step that came before anything else. Confidence, or assertiveness, or taking control of my life, or anything that I wanted to work on. So I better start learning how to do it.