By Kathleen O’Keefe – Kanavos In part one of this blog we discussed New Year Resolutions, the Chinese New Year and wants vs needs tied into the shift of consciousness taking place in the world.
Now is the dawning of a new year with a shift toward consciousness and self-awareness. I’m ready to make the shift into personal responsibility. My first New Year resolution will be to allow myself to love, embrace, and always put myself first. I give myself permission to be number one in my life. How can I possibly share with others if I am empty? I want to be embraced by others but need to love myself first.
During chemotherapy, my psychotherapist armed me with a powerful mantra to help survive the uncertainty of treatment. “You are number one. No one and nothing is more important than you.” She was right. Years later, as a cancer hotline phone counselor and mentor, that mantra is still important. If charity begins at home, and home is where the heart is, then an empty heart cannot give anything to anyone else.
The importance of this mantra was even more evident during my Stitch-n-Bitch (as we liked to call ourselves) radiation therapy group. It broke my heart to see the care-giver suddenly discarded when their circumstances shifted, and they needed family care. These women felt that without family love and devotion they were useless. Their chances for recovery were challenged by their depression and feelings of emotional emptiness. Our little group spent hours discussing wants versus needs. We want a beautiful house, but we only need shelter. We want to eat in fancy restaurants, but we only need nutritious food. We want others to love us, but we need to love ourselves. The list of wants versus needs is endless. Realizing the difference between them may be the first step in avoiding emotional and financial bankruptcy. When I see something enticing, I’ll ask myself, “Do I need that, or just want it?”
In 2014, I will focus on inner-balance by being kind, and forgiving to myself. I will seek out and join a community “sister-hood of women” who can be my support system. Their strength will keep me from feeling alone during times of despair, and their resources will help me meet the needs of my family and friends.
When my body is fatigued, I will rest. When my soul is tired, I will meditate, and give thanks for all that I have. I will surround myself with things I love; my husband, friends, pets, plants, music, and fragrant candles while taking a warm bubble bath. While I care for my body my soul will soar.
Like the Chinese yin and yang, which are seemingly opposing forces bound together, intertwined, and interdependent in the natural world, we are complex creatures comprised of body and soul. These two diabolically different parts must be in balance as a duality for complete health of body and mind. Like yin and yang, male and female, body and soul are a dynamic equilibrium. If one disappears, the other must disappear as well, leaving emptiness.
Too many of us have lost a part of ourselves and are experiencing an emptiness of being. The two faced mythical King Janus, patron of the new year, had two faces for an important reason; one to see the past and one to see the future. Although we too can also look in both directions, we tend to focus and judge ourselves by past events that cannot be changed. It’s time to face forward into a new year of balance comprised of yin and yang, old and new, need and want. You can learn from your past to build a positive future. The good news is that a sisterhood of women is only a phone call, blog, website, social media site, magazine or tweet away to help refill you with the love you deserve and NEED.
Balance yourself. Know you needs. Embrace the new shift taking place in the new year. Take care of your soul and it will take care of you . . . then you can take care of the wants of others.
BIO: Kathleen O’Keefe-Kanavos, Intuitive Life Coach, survived three breast cancers, wrote SURVIVING CANCERLAND: Intuitive Aspects of Healing (Cypress House, Jan 2014) http://tinyurl.com/p7cjfxa websites: http://www.survivingcancerland.com & Access Your Inner Guide, Hosts Living Well Talk Radio, Cancer Q&A columnist- CapeWomenOnlineMagazine, Dream Queen columnist-Wellness Woman 40 & Beyond,Blogger for BreastCancerYoga.com, YourDreamIntrepretation.com, WakeUpWomen, PATHEOS; R.A. BLOCH Cancer Foundation Hotline Counselor. Represented by Steve Allen Media