The movies we’ve watched, the books we’ve read, the magazines we’ve flipped through our entire lives have subtly taught us how to be bound to the idea of loving someone else. So we grow up trying to mold ourselves to be the perfect image so that we can possibly find the perfect soul mate to fulfill the fairy tale we’ve played in our heads a million times.
While society has done a lot to encourage us on how to love others, there is minimal information being made to encourage us on how to love ourselves. If anything, we’ve been taught that if we do love ourselves, it is much too of a self-absorbed, narcissistic, big-headed ego thing to do. It has become easier to shun ourselves and our bodies more than it is to love who and what we already are. Our every flaw, our every stretch mark, our every imperfection. That already sounds like it’s a hard thing to do isn’t it?
I don’t blame you. The great thing is, it’s never too late to reverse our thinking and change our perspective on what it means to love ourselves. I know the term “self-love” has been thrown around a lot lately so I wanted to take a moment to press the “pause” button and to put on a twist on what it means.
Before I get to that part. I just wanted to let you know that I understand.
I understand that you’ve made some mistakes in your life that you may beat yourself up over.
I understand that you have a lot of people in your life to love and to take care of .
I understand that you have so much going on that it’s hard for you to take time for you.
I understand that you might’ve been told degrading, hurtful comments in the past that you actually believe.
I understand that you even feel guilty if you do something nice for yourself.
I understand that sometimes accepting who you are and loving yourself is the hardest thing for you to do.
And up until this point, that’s okay. But now it’s time for you to know and remember this:
You deserve your love more than anyone else.
You deserve the love you have been unconditionally giving away.
You deserve a love from yourself that runs deep as the ocean.
Self-love is having a deeply intimate sense of nurturing your over all vitality in mind, body and soul to bring about happiness in your life. One of the most resting things I’ve learned in my studies with Yoga Science is that the highest principle of all of yoga is a Sanskrit word called “Ahimsa”, which means non-injury, non-harming towards yourself or towards others. To have compassion towards yourself in every thought you think, every word you speak, every action you perform. It is ultimately self-care.
For instance, when you look in the mirror, what kind of thoughts are coming up in your mind?
What are you often telling yourself?
Are they self-deprecating?
Are these thoughts the kind of thoughts that you would want your best friend or sister to tell herself?
Here’s a quick exercise for you to do right now:
to re-frame your thinking and practice on loving yourself is to think about someone you really love.
Who is someone you really love?
Ask yourself the following questions:
How would you treat this person?
What kind things would you say to this person?
How would you want this person to feel from being in your presence?
Whatever answers you get from asking yourself these questions, flip it back on yourself.
When it is hard to love ourselves, it is easier for us to think about those we love and how we would treat them. It makes it more simple for us to imagine that it is possible for us to give ourselves the same kind of love and it doesn’t feel so out of reach anymore.
While I understand how it may feel like you’re being selfish. It’s worth asking, while you’re taking care of and loving on others, who is taking care of you? How can we continue to give others love, when our own fountain of love is running dry? It can turn us into resentful beings that we never intended to be.
I invite you to take a moment to think how for today and the rest of your life, you will begin to practice self love with each passing day. It is not selfish to love yourself my dear. You will learn that the more you can learn to foster self-love, the more you are able to love others in unselfish, and unconditional ways. You expect less or nothing in return from them because your fountain is already full and flourishing on its own.
You have spent years picking yourself apart, criticizing yourself, and giving all the love you have away to people who may or may not have appreciated you. Give yourself the approval stamp. Give yourself the,
“I AM AMAZING”
“I AM GREATNESS”
“I AM WORTHY”
” I LOVE EVERYTHING I ALREADY AM”
And just see what happens 😉
P.S. Don’t leave me just yet! I’ve taken it a step further and wrote a practical blog post on “8 Ways to Practice Self-Love for Happiness “. Give it a read. I think you will enjoy it.
In Love and Light,