Self Love as the Key to understand Love
March 31, 2021
Self Love –
It sounds so easy; and yet, it is one of the hardest achievements for many human beings.
It is also one of the most important steps toward living life in balance, joy and freedom.
While there are many tools and wisdom that teach us to love, there is no set formula on what works for you personally. Each of us has to find our own unique way to feel love for self.
Below you will find tools, habits, information. All of it is about igniting that love within you. Of having the confidence and courage to reflect on the vision of who you truly are. The one that you love, the one you know is in you. To see yourself for all the beauty, the gift, the treasure you are. As you get to know yourself in your highest brightest being, the love inside yourself will open all layers of your life like petals of a flower.
1. We all have different needs and distinct ways of how we feel love.
How do you feel loved?
A good question to start exploring on how to love yourself.
What does feel like love to you?
Have you heard about the different languages of love?
There are Acts of Service, acts that require some thoughts and effort. Such as cooking your favorite meal for yourself, inviting yourself to your favorite restaurant, giving yourself the gift of time and presence.
The second love language is Quality Time. The time to see the movie you want to see, the time to have a coffee with a friend, to read a book, to just sit still and hear yourself. To listen to what your body is telling you, your mind, your emotions.
Another language of love are Words of Affirmation. To tell yourself "I love you,", to have a Mantra that helps you through the day, to listen and take in when you receive a compliment.
Love Language number 4 are Gifts. Be generous with yourself. Gift yourself that special crystal, that piece of art you like to look at, those flowers you like so much, the candle that smells so yummy, that lotion that makes your skin so soft to the touch.
The 5th love language is physical touch. Hug yourself every day. Touch your skin with love. Braid your hair. Let yourself sink into the pleasures of water touching you. Of wind playing with your skin.
What is your favorite way to receive love?
What is your way to express love?
2. An essential part of self love is the courage to acknowledge your truth. In all layers, perspectives, depths. What is good in my life, what is not.
Find your truth by asking yourself questions such as:
Where/When do I feel like I am hiding, dimming, retracting?
Where/When do I feel passionate, confident, in the softness of love and wisdom?
Where/When can I be myself?
Where/When do I feel all my insides coming to life?
3. Treat yourself to your best..
Be kind to yourself. Most of us have grown up being kind to others but have no mercy on ourselves. Be your own best friend. Think about forgiveness, compassion, gentleness when you think about yourself. When you talk to yourself, talk softly like you would to a newborn baby
4. Create a special space within your home, your room.
Create a space that feels like a sanctuary. Safe, comforting, where you can feel your own divine self. Where you can unwind, find your center, be yourself. Decorate it with things that are sacred to you, that have meaning to you. A place, a corner, where you can sit in silence, that will lift you up, where you feel supported, where you can allow yourself to just be yourself.
5. Take time for yourself.
Spoil yourself, gift yourself the present of presence. A time to feel yourself, feel the love from your heart, where you clear your mind, where you relax your body and you feel the goodness within. Even if that moment is fleeting for now, remind yourself every day. You can do it in the morning right after you wake up and/or at night, before going to bed. Any time you spend paying loving attention to what is going on within yourself is a good time.
6. Create a mantra.
Every morning, as you wake up, let that Mantra enter your field. Repeat, until you can feel it. A mantra is something that helps you to center and balance yourself. It is simple, it can be just one word, repeated over and over again. My own first mantra as I started my journey was "Love, Light, Peace and Hope". Over the years it has changed as I needed.
7. Do you have a Gratitude practice?
Gratitude is the number one door opener to all the beauty within the universe as accessed within and through yourself.
Every day, name at least 3 things you are truly grateful for. Feel it deep in your heart, the opening that genuine gratitude brings. Nothing is too small.
Are you healthy?
Do you have food for today?
Do you have a roof over your head?
A true friend?
Take it in and hold it dear.
The gratitude and the mantra are a great combination to practice in the morning just before getting out of bed. They will carry you through the day with a lighter, brighter, more positive attitude and mindset.
8. Compliment yourself.
Recognize the beauty in yourself and notice what you accomplish, what you do well. Even if you might not get the credit for it from the outside world, you know what you have done and where you can hold your head high. Acknowledge it to yourself. All the way down inside your belly, into your heart and into your mind.
A psychology teacher taught us that a compliment will cut through all layers of someone's shell or protective shield. The secret is that the compliment has to come from honesty, it has to be true. Several decades later, I have not found one person without something I can compliment them on. When you look for beauty, you will find it. Start with yourself.
9. Look at yourself in the mirror and tell yourself "I love you". Every day, every time you see your reflection.
At night, right before you go to bed, look at yourself in the mirror and think about your day.
Remember the person that did look so much happier after you talked to them.
What did go well today?
Where and when did you feel good about yourself?
Did you finally have the courage to tell someone that it is not ok how they treat you, what they do?
And tell yourself again how much you love yourself.
10. Remember what you do for others you do for yourself.
To love ourselves is sometimes easier when we can admire it in other people. Treat everyone around you the way you want to be treated. And see what happens. There is a magic in this, as that love that you extend will come right back to you. It is a universal law that whatever you put out into an environment will come back to you. In one way or another.
Just being mindful and treating others as you would like to be treated, with respect and honor, will change your world and will be mirrored to you from within. The compassion you find for others will give you the ability to look at yourself in a softer light.
11. Know your value. Honor and stand firm in your boundaries.
What will you allow in your life to take up space and time?
My own experience confirms what so many have said. This is one of the hardest practices to build, and one of the most rewarding things you ever do.
As you learn to say "No!", your yeses will become choices. When you choose to do something, it will fill you with enthusiasm instead of a sense of duty. The difference is huge and, for me, I have learned that I say "Yes" a whole lot more.
12. Each of us has trauma within that is crying out for healing.
Are you valuing yourself enough to attend to it? We like to repress trauma and pain. It so often is overwhelming.
The only way to heal is to feel, to love yourself. For it, despite it. And learning from it. Learn to heal yourself. There are so many practices out there that allow you to connect to your own inner being. The child that never was heard. The adult who is scared. Do one, do them all. Develop your own practice. The one that works for you.
Integrate what you learn into your life. Live it. I can safely promise you, along the way there will be self love, there will be love.
13. Stay with your emotions and feelings as much as you can..
That which affects you the deepest, may hold your greatest gift. Not dismissing your emotions and your thoughts, instead exploring what made you react, what made you loose your balance will lead to deeper self understanding and self love
14. Study love.
Make yourself the test object of what love in all its beautiful expressions truly feels like. As you recognize it within, you will also see it in others. You will know when it is fake, or conditional, and you will know when it is true and pure. Explore all the facets of love, such as compassion, kindness, forgiveness, honor, respect. Explore what it feels like to look at yourself in the mirror and see your own light. Examine what makes you feel more alive, more bright, more aligned within. Notice what ignites your passion. When and where do you buzz with excitement. What makes you want to dance and sing. What makes you want to get up in the morning, what makes your day.
Make sure it is about what you do, not dependent on outer circumstances. Softness, vulnerability, humility are benchmarks of Love in its purest form. In the end it does not really matter what other people think about you. What matters is how you feel about yourself.
15. Whatever you do, give it love. If you are not able to, don't do it.
Explore and find where you can express yourself in your brightest, your purest, your truest. Surround yourself with people that support your brightest expression of self. People you can trust and where you can express your deepest truth.
Be that person to others. Listen to what people tell you. Listen to what a situation, a place tells you. Believe what you see, hear, smell, taste, touch and feel. It is your truth. And as you support others in their highest expression, so will you be supported in your brightest. It is a universal law that what we put out will come back to us.
It is about learning and applying that which makes us feel we can breathe. Where we feel the freedom to be ourselves at our best. Where we are given the opportunity to think, speak and act within the perimeters of the person we want to be. The person we wish we would encounter when we are in a similar situation. Empathy. Grace. Acceptance and a true mirror that holds us up to our highest, our brightest, our most shiny being.
Remember that you can not give anything you don't have. If you have no self love, you can not love. And remember that it is a journey with many twists and turns. Be kind and gentle with yourself at all times, that in itself holds so much love.
Love, light and life are interchangeable terms to me. When you love, you become alive, living life fully, thriving. Your world becomes brighter as you become brighter. So many of us have been taught that self love is selfish. This is the time where we come to understand that self love is the bottom line to a world where we as a collective can thrive.
When you truly open to yourself, you can not help finding love in and all around you. The gentle breeze that hugs you, the warmth of the sun, the water flowing through your fingers. The beautiful tree that gives you shade, the feeling of your favorite cloth on your skin. Let it all sink in, feel it and feel the love that surrounds you. It is a reflection of how you love yourself.