Are you nice enough to yourself?

After college, I taught English and business for four years in a city 300 miles away from home.
At the time, it was the custom to board with a family rather than rent an apartment.
The first year, I stayed in the home of a sweet older couple. Mr. and Mrs. Fretz took very good care of me. And Mr. Fretz was liberal with advice–especially when I stayed out too late.
I loved living in their home, but there was one serious problem. Their house was two long blocks from the trolley. That was OK in the daytime; but at night the blocks were desolate and poorly lit.
So the next year, I chose a house with good bus access and roomed with another English teacher, Lois.
Vi and Cec had a fun four-year-old son and Vi was a wonderful cook. But the most interesting thing about that year was getting to know Lois better.
Lois was the most polite and gracious person I’ve ever met in my whole life. She would never go through a door first, she would never take her bath first, and she would never let herself be the first person to be served at dinner.
She always thought about other people first.
In fact, she was polite to a fault! ?
She was so polite at meals that sometimes Cec became irritated and would say, “I’ll just serve myself first!”
It was wonderful to live with a person like Lois and she made a permanent impression on me!
Most of us could learn from Lois. But, on the other hand, many of us who are in our 60s, 70s, and 80s were taught by our parents and teachers to always think about other people.
That’s good, in a way. But what about our needs? Are we nice enough to ourselves?
Are we sometimes too hard on ourselves? Last Thursday, my calendar saying was “I forgive everyone, including myself.”
And most important of all, do we pamper ourselves enough?
What would make you feel pampered? What would make you feel special? Choosing three fabulous chocolate truffles and savouring them slowly? Hiring someone to wash your windows?
Or better yet, re-reading the book you loved most when you were nine.
In case you need help pampering yourself, why not look at “2,001 Ways to Pamper Yourself” by Lorraine Bodger. All of the previous suggestions came from her book.
Her ways to pamper yourself range from the silly to the sublime. Her book offers more than five years of tips if you do one each day!
She suggests “Get Call Waiting” or “Get Rid of Call Waiting.” Pampering yourself is all about you. It all depends what would make you feel good.
Breakfast in bed–even if you have to make it yourself. Taking a child to a petting zoo–so you can pet the animals. Or eating peanut butter straight from the jar.
Never forget about other people, but always remember that you are someone special also. So pamper yourself whenever you need it.
A little pampering can help you stay happy and healthy.
Marie Snider is an award-winning health care writer and syndicated columnist. Write her at or visit

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