5 fabulous reasons to cultivate self-love
Self-love some of the backstory…
Once upon a time, I felt such shame, guilt and self-hatred for my things that happened in my life and the hand I perceived I was dealt. I have found myself caught up in my stories. Isolation was my default stance. When I can’t bear things any longer I hide. The truth is I’ve hidden from my ‘truth’ and in doing so not allowed myself to love me. What I have come to realise that my crappy life is a fabulous gift. Writing is my saviour. Through writing, I have learned that I have a right to love.
“The unexamined life is not worth living.” Socrates, in Plato, Dialogues, Apology. Greek philosopher in Athens (469 BC – 399 BC)
Not just writing if I am honest – pure bloody-mindedness as well.
When I was expelled from school, I called my dad at work, expecting the usual telling off. The sting of his words, ‘are you mental or what?’ wrenched my heart. I held back the tears and swallowed hard; he simply put the phone down on me. No one talked or looked at me that week, while I, slightly unconcerned, relished my newfound freedom. A few days later I found myself on a farm with the Moonies. More on this in another blog.
Then I entered the world of work.
Every day I dragged myself out of bed to go work, I wanted more from my life, but I was caught in a limbo land where I couldn’t move. I was trapped, caught in the spider’s web and watching horrified as life passed me by. Don’t get me wrong I have had some wonderful jobs, but I was never fulfilled. I wore the suits and did the stuff and on the inside, I was dying.
I thought that relationships would save me…
What I failed to realise was that it gets easier to deal with things, not that life would get easier. Blinkered and unaware of the tougher times to come I lived in a weird smog. My desire to learn, heal and grow and my knowledge of how to look at things didn’t desert me, but somehow I stranded myself on a loveless Island with a strange bedfellow.
One day in what I thought was the sanctity of a boring marriage, the one where I thought was safe, I was delivered a hellish wake-up call.
I relocated my life but not my self-hatred until I made myself look in the mirror.
Then it changed and I learned about self-love
I have been made to face up to life, who I am and why I am here, it has been freaking hard, but, it has taught me several things.
- One, don’t look for the key, the key will find you.
- Two, the same for love, don’t look for it.
- Three, I have to open my heart to receive love.
- Four, constant giving of love is all very well, but it doesn’t mean that you will get love and respect back.
- Five, listen, watch, hear the signs and symbols for they are messages for you.
- Six, faith and trust can be hard taskmasters.
- Seven, loving yourself is awesome and makes such a difference to your life.
5 fabulous reasons to cultivate self-love
You learn that self-love is not selfish
It sounds rather narcissistic to say that you love yourself. If you are a preening prancing horse then maybe it’s not so cool. However, the conscious evolved kind of love where you honour and respect who you are is a wonderful place to be. Through this, you start to see that you have value.
It lets you be who you are
I’ve always been a bit crazy or as I was once described a wild child, though I think I may let that label go. Instead, you can I can relish the silliness of being just who we want to be. For me, that includes singing to my doggies – they do like it, I’m sure. Dancing with them and generally feeling good about just being rather than trying to please others. When you love you, you can be real.
Your essence shines through
This is my essence as well as my values. I’m essentially a free spirit (my essence) who dislikes rules and adores freedom (a value). Intuitive and demanding fair play and justice. When you love yourself, it is easier to stand by your values and life your life as essentially you. That is, like above, not being afraid of being seen as you and walking your path, your way.
Acceptance and no judgement
This has to be one of the hardest things to do. Accept and do not judge yourself or others. However, it is one of the most satisfying and for me funniest ones to do. When I catch myself about to judge me, I eat my words, sing it away, make myself laugh and then quickly reframe. Of course, there is always room for expansion and transformation and that will come.
You can stand tall around bullies
Where once you may have had weak boundaries now you hold your head high and let the behaviour of manipulators and bullies pass you by. It becomes easier to say no, without making excuses. And when people try to emotionally blackmail you, you’ll find that it’s stuffed in the trash can as their stuff.
We’ll look at more reasons another day. For now, understand that cultivating self-love is one of the keys to inner peace and contentment.
What about you? What has loving you given you? If you don’t have it, what is the one thing you can do today to start this process and practice?
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