How to Give Yourself Permission to Give Yourself Permission

Between your job, your family, and your eBay store, you spend so much of your energy on things other than yourself. You’ve spent so much time indulging others, and now you’re overdue for some “you” time. But where do you start when you feel guilty for letting yourself do anything? Follow these simple steps and you’ll be letting yourself let yourself do something for yourself:


Step 1: Take a deep breath. Giving yourself permission is a big, scary thing, so make sure your body is fully oxygenated. Inhale deeply from your diaphragm and exhale freely through your mouth. You can’t allow yourself anything if you’ve passed out from holding your breath. Make sure not to inhale too deeply though, because that can also cause headaches. Ugh, letting go is so complicated!


Step 2: Get high. You know who don’t have to think twice about giving themselves permission? Potheads. Those stoners just give themselves permission to do whatever they want without giving a second thought, because they don’t always have second thoughts. Since this exercise is all about permission, put the vaporizer away and roll yourself a nice, indulgent joint. You’ve earned this.


Step 3: Think, “What would Oprah do?” If there’s one woman on God’s green earth who knows how to give herself permission, it’s Mama O. If Oprah could allow herself to create an entire television channel against everyone’s better judgment, surely you can permit yourself a few permissions here and there.


Step 4: Feed your soul. Give yourself permission to give yourself permission to go ahead and make some mac and cheese. If you haven’t already torn open the box and started munching on dry pasta, go ahead and allow yourself to boil some water. While the water is boiling, remember that giving yourself permission is a process. You can’t just allow yourself to “do” what you “want,” duh. It could take weeks, years even, to get to a place of self-permission giving. Order a pizza or two, sit back, and bask in the glow of your newfound independence from not permitting yourself to give yourself permission.


Step 5: Ignore the naysayers. While your husband, children, and employer may accuse you of “abusing substances” or “not leaving the house in a month,” it’s important to remember that making the change to change is scary for others, too. This fight is worth allowing yourself to fight.


Whether you’re hoping to get permission from yourself to eat a cookie even though it’s not your cheat day or want permission to love more freely, permission to give permission is granted.