No one is keeping a tally. So why am I?

By Christy Uffelman


I’ve been battling my inner Martyr lately and losing.

She shows up whenever I get stuck in the tiresome cycle of Overdo. Resent. Repeat.

Whenever I say yes instead of no.

Myrtle is a capital-P People-Pleaser, and no thanks to her, I’ve spent many a day taking on more. More work. More chores. More obligations. And my hope is that when I deliver on these “favors” (which I do at the high cost of feeling fried), I expect parades and cheers from the sidelines.

Which rarely happens.

In fact this hunger for validation is almost like an itch you can’t scratch. It’s why folks like Myrtle are always fishing for compliments, which (whether they’re aware of it or not) often takes the form of resentment.

The truth is that we don’t need to wait for – or earn – validation from anyone, because it’s right here available to us all along. And it’s from ME.

I ultimately win the battle with Myrtle not through resistance, but tenderness.

The good news is that I have a great accountability partner in my world – my 14 year old, who, when she sees me feeling frazzled and over-committed, grasps me firmly by both shoulders, looks me in the eye, and asks “So Mom, what did you do for yourself this week?”

And with that gentle pause she reminds me of the little reset button that we all have access to. The one that says in big bold lettering: Self-Care Isn’t Selfish.

Because even though I know better, old habits die hard.

I may preach this stuff, but that doesn’t always mean always I live it.

But I CAN notice my behaviors and purposefully make a different choice next time. After all, change begins the instant we choose.


#WorkInProgress #LovingMyrtleNotFightingHer #YouCantPourFromAnEmptyCup #RetireTheTally