I heard someone recently say, "Be the most safe person for you to be around." Awkward phrasing, I'm sure a better phrase could be found. But the thought behind the sentence stopped me cold.
What is a safe person? To me, it is someone who does not criticize, judge, or blame. It is someone who always listens intently until they understand, who gives undivided attention to my hurts and fears, someone who is always available, compassionate, and empathetic. Someone with whom I feel completely free to be myself.
To be that person to myself was a new concept. That is, I have known for a long time that I "shouldn't" judge myself, that I should be kind to myself, supportive, attentive, caring, etc. But to call this being a "safe person" is to cast it in a very different light. I know what it means to be a safe person. I know what it feels like when I feel safe with someone. It is a visceral experience, one that allows me to relax, be myself, and dare to say things I would not want to say otherwise.
To be the person with whom I would have that feeling of safety, warmth, and acceptance, suddenly makes it much more obvious what it is I need to be. It becomes intuitive how to prepare a safe space for whatever feelings come up in me, rather than my living by a bunch of "shoulds", trying hard to be my own best friend.
I am grateful for a new vision of how to be.