Posted on Mar 28, 2011 | 0 comments

Back about a million years ago I was a certified life guard.  I was in my teens and had worked my way up through the various Red Cross swimming certification levels all the way to the top,  It was a grueling process of written testing and physical stamina.  I did my certification at my summer camp so I had exactly one week to complete the entire process.  I spent every free moment and then some on studying or practicing rescue and loved every minute of it.  But recently I have been reminded of one aspect of that training.

First rule of rescue: SAVE YOURSELF FIRST.  It is a little counter intuitive but the theory makes perfect sense.  If I go out there to save a drowning person who is panicking, they WILL try to climb up my body to get out of the water.  That is just basic human nature.  They do not understand that in that moment they will drown me right along with them.  So my job as a life guard was to save myself FIRST then save the victim.

So here is my point: Are you saving yourself first?  Do you put the needs of your family and work before your own?  I know – I really do.  I’m a Mom and a Wife and an employee.  We have been taught to put our children and spouse first and work second.  But if you don’t save yourself first, then who will be there to do the laundry, cook the food, create the spreadsheet?

Here is what I mean by saving yourself first.  Do you make sure that you are properly feed?  Do you make sure that you take your vitamins?  Do you make sure that you get your Yoga time?  How about that meditation time?  Do you make time for (fill in the blank)?  Or do you just let it slip away?

Here is the real truth.  When you take better care of yourself you take better care of others.  I promise you that after a yoga class with a nice quiet Corpse Pose you are a better parent.  When you eat healthy food that feeds your body what it needs you are a better spouse.  When you take that 20 minutes to sit and meditate that spreadsheet will be a thing of beauty.

Is this an easy thing to do?  NO.  You really ought to know by now that everything I tell you (almost) is hard.  But you know what?  If it were easy you would already be doing it.  Somehow the human species is really great at figuring out the easy stuff.  It is the hard stuff, the worth while stuff, that makes our lives richer and deeper and it just takes work.

So the next time you are tempted to skip breakfast, yoga class, a 5 minute sit, (fill in the blank), remember that you have to save yourself first.  Everybody else is counting on you, but if you are run down, stressed out, sleep deprived you will drown right along with them and then who will do the laundry.


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *