A Moment of Change

Sherry Gaba LCSW, Psychotherapist, Life
& Recovery Coach is featured Celebrity Rehab on VH1. Sherry is the author
of “The Law of Sobriety” which
uses the law of attraction to recover from any addiction. Please download your
copy of “Manifest Holistic
” from Sherry’s Enrich Your Life Series. Contact Sherry at for webinars,
teleseminars, coaching packages and speaking engagements. Listen to Sherry on “A Moment of Change with Sherry Gaba”on CBS Radio.

Most of us believe, in theory, that we should make efforts to take better care of
ourselves, through better eating, more exercise, or working our recovery
programs. But we can fall into the trap of forgetting to engage or these
behaviors. Under the surface, there might be another reason we don’t follow
through: we don’t really believe that we deserve to tend to our personal
well-being. Self-care is often erroneously and critically labeled selfishness. It’s not. Even Jesus and
Gandhi took time for themselves, withdrawing from the crowds to tend to their

Time  spent in self-care fills us up so we can give of ourselves and not be left dried
and shriveled up like last summer’s grapes left on the vine. Most of us can
relate to the feeling of running on empty. This automotive analogy is actually a
good one. What can our car do for us with no gasoline in the tank? Be a large,
shiny driveway ornament? Not so useful. So why do we expect ourselves to be able
to run and give and work and cook and clean and put on a happy face with nothing
fueling us? It’s crazy, and it’s high time we kick crazy to the curb.

Make yourself a priority. Make the time to do the things that fill you up. For some,
it may be a leisurely stroll on the beach. For others, 30 uninterrupted minutes
with a great book. Or a fabulous bike ride or coffee with your friends or seeing
your loving therapist (see how I slid that one in?). Or seeing a movie in the theatre. It doesn’t have to be a
weeklong trip to Tahiti (though if you get the opportunity, I highly recommend
jumping at it). In fact, they should be the small things that you love. The ones
that bring you peace and a sense of reconnection with yourself. Small things are
doable and can be easily incorporated into your everyday life. Pick a few and
put them on your calendar, in your Blackberry, whatever — and then actually do them.

For those resisters who think, “I can’t possibly take that time. I won’t be able to
be there as much for my kids and spouse and boss” — stop making excuses.
Because, honestly, that’s what that is. If your kids or spouse or boss had to
choose between someone who was happy and creative and energized when they were
with them or someone who was barely hanging on by a thread, who do you think
they would choose? Who would you choose? By investing in yourself, you create dividends to extend to those around
you. When you’re running on empty, all you’re giving them are your fumes. Not

Put aside those faulty notions of the nobility of killing yourself for the greater
good. Realize that your greatest gift to give others is the best version of

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