I recently spoke to Phylicia Sadsarin, a Denver, CO based beauty and lifestyle content creator at askpRoy.com, an inspirational website that covers an array of beauty and lifestyle related topics with a strong focus in natural hairstyling and care. She has been natural for nine years now and personally, one of my natural hair motivations throughout my own journey. Here she discusses her latest initiative, Self Love Project 2018.

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The moment I cut off the relaxed hair from my natural growth, it was like a "f*%k it" moment.

Regardless of what came from it, no matter how my curl pattern looked, didn't even matter if it was a TWA or longer, I knew in that moment I had to accept me for me. Loving my hair came easy and because of the cut, I was able to see me fully and completely. It is so much bigger than "hair," however hair was the starting point on my self discovery journey in finding my true and authentic self.

In 2014, I decided to embark on a self love journey.

I started the Self Love Project in February and went 28 days posting positive affirmations, completing self care, posting a self portrait, and complimenting someone.

Toward the end of 2017, I realized I hadn't continued with the self love project as I had hoped to every year. (Why did I abandon it in the first place?) Likewise, there were a great deal of people in my life that wanted to make a change, yet didn't know exactly how to go about doing it whether it was new mamas wanting to reconnect or reaffirm with themselves or friends who wanted to better themselves for the new year.

Since January was right around the corner and is the official month for self love, I hopped on the opportunity to relaunch the project and invited others to join in on the fun and potentially transformative experience.

Yes, every single day I have to pamper myself.

Pampering myself means self care and self care isn't always a bouquet of roses. Since becoming a mother, simple day to day self care has become a challenge. The truth is I sometimes sacrifice my self care in lieu of doing something else "more important". The reality is, I am more important than mundane tasks, so I have to make time for myself.

My favorite way to decompress after a long day is definitely taking a long, hot shower alone (I stress alone because my baby is very mobile and will find me wherever I am in the house -- new moms know the struggle).

I sometimes find it challenging to get my posts together because -- as aforementioned -- other tasks get in the way. This project has challenged me to focus on "me time" and commit to taking care of myself and doing the things I love (this project being one of them). I just take it day by day and give myself grace if I can't get every aspect of the project completed. The great thing is I've made it past the halfway mark without failing - so far, so good!

The greatest reward has been me being able to live my best life while inspiring others to do the same.

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You've got two pots full of dirt: one you plan to keep for yourself and one you plan to give away. You have one seed. Where do you plant the seed? If you plant the seed in the receiver's pot, you are left with just dirt. Two things could happen: the person decides that when their plant grows, they will give you seeds in return. This could work, but you would be betting on someone else to give you what you need in order to be fruitful.

The other outcome is the person gives you nothing in return and there you are: just you and your dirt.

Rather, if you plant that seed in your own pot -- water it, prune it, and nurture it -- once it's grown and it bears fruit, you can enjoy the fruits of your labor, harvest the seeds, and give those seeds to not just one person, but to many people while still having some left for yourself. The planting process can take place again and you can all grow together.

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In this case, your seed is love and the pots represent hearts...

It's true, you don't have to love yourself in order to give love, but what are you truly left with if you aren't giving yourself love first? If you show yourself love first, then you can freely give it to others. You can't bank on others give you love in return, so you have to give it to yourself first and foremost.

Likewise, when you have enough love built up, you have an excess. Why hoard it? Give it away!

Perhaps when you give it away, the person who bears fruit will share of their seeds with you just as you did with them. Even if they decide not to, you will have more seeds than you can harvest so you're good either way. The end goal is to be self reliant on happiness and love, yet understand that the more you give the more likely you will receive. This is why it is just as important to give love as it is to receive love.

Want to be part of the Self Love Project 2018?

Follow Phylicia's self love journey on askpRoy.com , @askpRoy Instagram, and on Facebook, or Twitter. and/or by using the hashtag #askpRoyselfloveproject on Instagram.

If you would like to join, it is very simple: For 31 days, commit to posting a selfie/portrait daily, post one affirmation daily, compliment one person daily, and commit to one act of self care daily. That's it. We would love to be inspired by your transformation, so if you're up for it use the hashtag #askpRoyselfloveproject to document your journey.

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