90 days of self – love challenge: Estelle is WELL = done and digitized. Part 1

* Updated and posted on 8 June 2020. The process of this challenge was eye-opening and heart-opening. I wanted to share some of my discoveries with all of you in the hopes of helping others to find some clarity amidst the current state of the world.

ESTELLE IS WELL update after successful completion of 90 days.  This is a lengthy deep dive of how self – love can help you to shift into gear especially if you feel like you are just sitting in the same gear right now. I did my best to unpack and deconstruct some applicative aspects so that everyone can see what self- love really is and what it means to each and every one of us.

Disclaimer : AS ALWAYS, I am not an expert nor perfect. I simply share my experiences, thoughts, and views on my journey so that it can help others on their journeys. I am not qualified to give medical advice. I am not a life coach and I am not here to judge or prescribe to others how to live life. I am still in transition myself, but while I might be a few steps ahead, there could be someone out there who does not know where or how to start. Hopefully their glow up starts NOW.HERE.

 

 What lies beneath is the truth.

Your truth will set you free 

and 

heal parts of you,

parts of your family and millions of souls around the world.

Your truth is POWERFUL.

– 142-

Mirror work and deep introspection brought me so much value that I appreciate myself more now.

It is now May 11 2020. Day 45 of Mzansi’s lockdown. I completed my self designed and self – assigned self- love challenge on 20 April 2020.  I have not been able to write  for quite a few weeks now.  I wasn’t experiencing any writer’s block or lack of creativity. I simply could not write. I think all the journalling dried up my pen and long pause was necessary so that my being could digest and process everything.

I have been learning how to harness, save, distribute and transmute my energy and it has been immensely beneficial to my train of thought, level of focus while doing my work and improved my networking and interviewing skills for the business profiles and personal / artist profiles that I have been crafting with great success.

On a personal note, I have so much inner work left to do and my decision to take 90 days and not 21 days was a commitment to myself before everything and everyone else.

It is said that it takes just 21 days to learn a new habit or start a new routine. So what did you do during the first 21 days of lockdown ?

The world being on lockdown and my being on a journey toward myself have so much more significance now than it would have had a decade ago when I naively thought I had made it. That I had somehow had it all because I was abroad and earning good money. I mention money because my view of money has been distorted and it brought me to the conclusion that I am in fact, financially illiterate and that this is now of great importance to my well-being. I plan on putting systems in place to ensure my resources remain abundant in availability and accessibility.

And No, I didn’t blow my money on trivial things or go into crippling debt but I didn’t save and invest as much, best or wisely as I could, because I was a know -it- all. I couldn’t put my pride in my pocket and wanted to prove I could do everything for myself and I didn’t do my homework well enough. 

Yes ! I was and I still am as stubborn as a mule. That stubbornness counts in my favour when it comes to persevering through the storms. Now, I know and DO better and that is a huge leap. I have shifted from the teacher’s seat to that of the student’s. I know that I am never too old to learn and it’s not too late for me to be and stay financially independent and free even if the world is in the midst of a pandemic. I am the midst of becoming the first of my kind. A free- thinker. A thought – leader. A fierce female. A wanted and valued partner. A force of nature. A powerhouse of talent. An African Queen. If Miss World can do it, so can I!

Repeat daily:

“ Failure is fruitful fertilizer.

Failure is fuel.

Rejection is redirection.

Mistakes are motivation.”

-142-

 

Allow me to take you through a quick summary of my 90 day self – love challenge while introducing my second cousin by blood, male counterpart and equal in this journey we call life, one of my biggest supporters and fans, my alley, my advisor, my safe place and fun times friend, Kevin R. October.

He joined in on the challenge so that we could have some yang to my yin and offer the guys of this world some insightful tit bits too. His journey will follow in Part 2. Remember we are growing and glowing together, apart.

Is practising self – love selfish?

The first self – love challenge I did ran on for 21 days. I found it online through some Dutch life coach that most likely popped up as a search result while I was looking for advice or tips on self- love. She was offering some free programs and the task was simple and straight forward. This self – love challenge had a one-page contract where you had to first download it, then print it out so that you could sign your name to bind the contract.

The physical act of signing the contract with your name, location and date meant  that you were taking it seriously like you would any other contract. By honouring those agreements stipulated in said contract meant that you honoured yourself.

 ” In my experience practising self- love is not selfish but self- full. “

At the end of each day or during the day all you had to do was write 3 things about yourself that you loved. My results were refreshing and seeing my thoughts and feelings toward myself in a softer more forgiving light, showed me that I didn’t have to be hard on myself all the time. I could easily  find 3 positive things to say about myself daily ( without repeating the same thing twice ) and that enabled me to do that with others.

Pay attention to  the lessons.

Life is trying to 

teach you something.

It might come wrapped

 in despair and confusion 

but when all is said and done, 

you will find that you have either progressed or regressed.

 If you are a good student, 

you will learn the first time.

142

 

When people crossed my path, I would shower them with compliments, say thank you and show them, love. I felt full. I didn’t lose anything by showing others some love. I reserved my energy, because I had the love I could now see for myself and I just activated theirs, like a mirror. A mirror that showed strengths. And that’s my truth. That has always been my truth. I look past my flaws and hang-ups and quirkiness and moods. I discovered that universal love is my truth and I express love in my own way. Just like you express love in your own unique way. Affirm : It’s all good vibes and we are from the same tribe of souls.

Set professional and personal boundaries 

for yourself and others. 

Do not allow anyone to take advantage of  you. 

Do not sabotage yourself either.

-142-

So with my own 90 day self- love challenge, I had to go deeper. I needed to look myself in the eye and address my self- care, my boundaries and all the ways that I was essentially disregarding myself when it came to my loved ones, friendships, close relationships and my personal identity. I would often give and not receive and vice versa.

Others were giving and I was taking and I couldn’t give back and keep the cycle of love going because I had already spent my love in the wrong places with the wrong faces who hid behind very convincing masks of love but it was all lies. I prefer the truth.

I also had to re-evaluate some business deals and ventures that I had tried to enter in with people who seemed promising but ended up being dead ends and dead weight to my very lively and truthful vision of creating and successfully selling mindfulness through uniquely design products, my way.

Pray.

Breathe.

Deflect negative thoughts by focusing on your blessings.

Welcome new energy.

Smile.

Give and receive love.

-142-

I  had to get off autopilot. I kept reverting to old behaviours because I am in an old environment at this time. I am a new person who has learned to create her own environments and sense of peace within mass chaos and I worked hard to get there.

Familiar places breeds mass chaos for me and that doesn’t leave me or keep me at my best. And that’s where auto-pilot takes over but actually keeps me under instead of rising to the occasion of my life as it is now.

The positives and wins that I discovered in the chaos and uncertainty of lockdown

 

I am strong-willed and I am persistent and I am overbearing and that’s 100% okay. I am also a daddy’s girl. Being in my thirties won’t change that. I have every right to want my father to be present in my life, teaching me things, talking to me in the garden, I teach him things as well. Just having time with him and him alone is a form of love that can’t be bought or manufactured.

Some things can’t be discussed with our mothers in the same way that we can’t discuss some things with our fathers and that is why I love being my father’s daughter. I am really happy to be at home with my parents right now.

 ” EVERYTHING truly does happen for a reason even if it does not bring us the desired outcomes. Out of this too we shall come.”

There must be a reason that the Universe brought me back home right now after all this time, under such questioning circumstances. The Universe wanted me to be back in South Africa right now and I am choosing to embrace it as best as I can.

How does this fit in with my 90 days? 

I divided my challenge into 3 stages ; mind, body and soul. For my mind, I already started trauma counselling and psychotherapy, for my body I had to get into a routine and schedule that suited my body as it is now. I still do yoga and I got back on track with my diet, which went off on a summer holiday and had the time of her life, gaining a few kilos then losing it again during lockdown.

Affirm: Miracles happen all the time.

A few highlights, or things that came to light that have not surfaced before was my soul. My soul needed sustenance that only parents, life long friends and family members can give. People who have known me my whole life. People who have walked this long and hard road with me. People who have helped me pave a new path for myself who believed in me, rooted for me, looked up to me, confided in me and have always been there for me through all my phases and stages. Loving me unconditionally.

Mother nature, mountains, proteas, dogs and cousins Dalton, Tarryn and Lauren

I realised this when I recently went hiking with my cousins on my father’s side. Being in my grandparents’ house again, where we all grew up and played with each other showed me that we are everlasting beings. The physical property and trees and birds are healing. And you can only learn to appreciate your sense of home once you have not been on home soil for so long.

And I thought that not much has changed in 5 years but the whole world has gone through a fast forward in a what feels like split second. Many of us are still catching up. Some of us are on the same frequency and sadly a large percentage will remain stagnant.

I have a place 

in the world 

and wherever I am,

 is where I belong.

142

My best friends, who I have known since my mid teens, who then wove me into their families and now there is a whole network of us. They have also played an integral part of my personal identity and we share one thing that is unchanging. Language. Afrikaans is my soul language and my true self.

” Afrikaans is my taal.”

This was another breakthrough when I realised that yes, I took on the world and experienced other cultures but I was denied to share parts of me because certain parts didn’t seem international or popular enough for other’s liking and that’s essentially their loss, not mine.

It’s something I started to deny every time a foreigner would question me on my upbringing, education, race, heritage, credentials and work ethic, reasons for still being single and without child etc. In these moments, I wish I could have addressed them in a proper Cape Coloured style and tell them “ Loep k@k djy! Wie de hel dink djy is djy om vi my oor my eie goed in en uit te vra?!? Ken djy vir my? Bly liewer still, jy met jou een taal wat djy skaars kan reg praat.” Doing my best to be mature, professional, mindful, respectful and flying the flag as best as I could for Mzansi, I never did. It was best left unsaid. I have an opportunity to counter that narrative now.

Hindsight 2020 in 2020

I have had so many encounters where I was told who I was by people who had very little knowledge of South Africa, people who constantly wrongly introduced me as being from South America ( which is an entire continent and not even a country ).

( as seen on tv)

I would also have to put up with people from (other) third world countries, more underdeveloped than mine that would proudly and snobbishly say they would never go to my country.  ” There are too many poor people who are dying from hunger there ” ” They are not educated or well traveled.” ” They live in small run down dwellings ” ” They have lions for pets”. ” Why is your skin so light, I thought Africa was hot all the time “. ” Why do they speak so many languages? ” Ignorance is rife. That’s just life. I refuse to accept this outdated view. Our view is better now. Clearer now.

I became offended and didn’t want to offend others who had even less to be proud of as a nation. I got tired of educating so many people’s ignorance. I go tired of feeling less than because I was the fairer sex being treated unfairly for just being me. For representing us, a multi-cultural nation and culture. To me, South Africa is one of the most culturally rich nations on the planet. Our melting pot of cultures make us wealthy and priceless.

One family tree, many branches of fruits

I personally think that it’s amazing that both sides of my family consist of different shapes,shades and sizes. That we speak a collection of different dialects and languages That we have lawyers, teachers, chefs, musicians, business owners, dancers, singers, writers, managers, carpenters, seamstresses, nurses, DJs, sound engineers, athletes, scholars and beauty therapists and more from both sides of my family, from both genders and from multiple generations of the same bloodline.

To make a long inward journey short

I guess the most important thing I had learned and something that you may or may not take away as a lesson. Whoever is reading this right now.  If you are in your 20’s, 30’s, 40’s or above, please don’t be a statistic or a stereotype. I am saying this with the highest level of respect. Don’t be generic. Basic. One -size -fits- all. Bland. One dimentional. Just like everyone else. Everyone else is already taken. You aren’t. There is no one like you. Own that.

Don’t be just another nobody. Just another number. Make your name matter. Live up to your name. If you don’t know what you name means, search for it. If you don’t like your government name, create a new name. Create a persona that is you and represents your true essence. And don’t look for external validation once you have established your new name or new persona. Just experience it and live it. Eplore your glory, like you have just discovered a lump of gold.

Plant better seeds,

not 

bitter seeds.

Flourish.

Do not perish.

 142

If you ask me, I’d strongly suggest that you talk to yourself interrogation style if this resonates with you.

Find out who you really are at your core. It might not be a huge revelation or coming of age or suddenly hit you when you turn a certain age or reach a certain stage in your life but you will slowly start to dissipate if you are doing what you are doing right now, just because everyone does it.

Since you can’t go outside, why not go within?

Ask yourself these questions and if it’s of use to you, continue to ask more questions as time passes. Now is actually the perfect time. With it being a worldwide crisis and all, you have the opportunity now to ask yourself:

  • What would I like to leave behind for others who are like me, as my legacy ?

*Think : intangible but meaningful. Think big. Forget small. Forget the box.Forget the templates and molds.

  • What makes me me? What makes you, you ?

 * Not what do people like about me so I can do more of that, so I will continue to be liked. What makes you you ? That awkward non-sensical annoying part of you according to others, that’s who you really are

What doesn’t make me me?

* Whatever you discover here is what you need to evaluate, remove, transmute, forgive, release, surrender to and embrace with that you have.

Do not become 

what you have overcome. 

If you have overcome dark times, 

live in the light.

If you have overcome addiction,

live mindfully. 

If you have overcome abuse. Live lovingly.

142

 

I also realized that I had become bitter and serious again by default and not by choice. Why? Most 30 year old people reach this point and hanging around age-appropriate people does NOt work well for me. I also know some 40 year people who share the same sentiment. My journey is not as demanding, routine, and permanent as theirs.

I have more to be grateful for and less to complain about. Some people might resent me more and that is how I know it’s best to remove myself from age-appropriate circles, or even seemingly like-minded people.

 

Self-check: another essential tool of self- love because sometimes I am the problem

I tend to mimic others energy and sometimes without realising it, I then become the complainer and moaner again when I am around people with who I usually have fun with and talk about things other than daily trials and tribulations. When you can practise awareness and evaluate things from the outside looking in, you win. And if you are able to work towards this with yourself you can and will be able to win with others as well.

Keep glowing up

with Love and Light

from Skylar

P.S  be you , be brave,  stay safe, stand strong and focus on the good now. It’s time for permanent betterment to manifest in our lives.

 

 

 

 

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