Loving Yourself Comes First
Not in a superficial, oh I’ll have a bubble bath or book a massage kinda way. But in a true deep totally unconditional, no matter what way.
And that love is hard to give. You know why?
Because we hardly ever see it in the world.
Most love given and received is transactional. I love you because you’re pretty or handsome but the minute you let yourself go, I’m no longer in love with you.
I love you so long as you’re good and do as I say.
I love you but could you not do/say/be this thing that you do/be/say sometimes?
I love you but…
I’ve only truly been loved totally unconditionally once in my life and it was by a being far wiser than an human. And that wonderful being showed me how amazing I am, how truly absolutely fucking wonderful he thought I was every single day.
That’s the kind of love we need to have for ourselves. But its not as easy as just flicking a switch and starting to love ourselves. For some reason, we’ve made it hard to love ourselves.
We reject ourselves, we’re not enough, we have to do this, stop doing that, be something else before we’re worthy of loving ourselves.
We have been conditioned to find love outside ourselves rather than from within. And that starts from birth as a basic survival mechanism, we have to get our Mum and Dad to love us so they will take care of us, so we adapt ourselves to be what we think will win their approval and love.
So right from the start, if we don’t have parents who love and accept us as we are and take care of us for no other reason than we are here, we already learn to camouflage the parts found ‘unacceptable.’
And we continue through life looking for that ‘perfect love’ to bring us joy, happiness, peace and acceptance.
But how can we find it outside when we don’t feel it inside?
The most important relationship you can develop is one with yourself.
Ruda Lande explains: ‘If you do not respect your whole, you cannot expect to be respected as well. Don’t let your partner love a lie, an expectation. Trust yourself. Bet on yourself. If you do this, you will be opening yourself to be really loved. Its the only way to find real, solid love in your life.’
The word that stands out in the brilliant quote above for me is ‘expectation.’ We expect the other person to make us feel a certain way and when they stop doing that, the relationship falls apart.
But how can we have expectations of other people to make us happy?
As I keep saying, over and over again, don’t go looking for outside thing to fix an internal issue.
Start looking at yourself as someone you’re totally love with, in that honeymoon period where everything the other person does and says is perfect, they’re wonderful, oh how you love them!
How do you do that for yourself? How do you give yourself the gift of self love?
Start by creating a list of things you love about yourself.
Yeah, I know, you’re squirming in your seat even thinking about doing such a thing. How big headed is that?
It was one of the playground taunts that would get shouted at people who were more confident, more sure of themselves and perhaps who liked and loved themselves better than most, ‘Who do you think you are, you really love yourself, don’t ya?’
Why were we trained to not appreciate just how bloody wonderful we are?
I still struggle with this but everyday I practice saying ‘I love myself’ over and over again. I look in the mirror and say, ‘I really love you,’ to my reflection and everyday I write down one thing that makes me special.
If you don’t love yourself, you don’t get to live. You exist. That’s all. Not the same thing at all.
So make a list of all the things you love about yourself, the things that make you special, and the things you want to be loved for.
Take your time because you’ll probably struggle with this at the start and I suggest you aim for one hundred but no less than fifty things on your list.
Put aside your insecurities and focus instead on what makes you such an amazing, interesting, fascinating person. And remember, its not about how you look, its about who you are. Although how you look is fabulous too.
Find more than self acceptance, find big self love.
Its time to let go of the childish desire to not seem too in love with yourself, because its what we were born to be, all the time.
And as you’re making this list I want you to take the time to congratulate yourself on having all these amazing qualities and characteristics. Allow yourself to feel a sense of satisfaction about who you are.
Because if you don’t take the time to love yourself and appreciate yourself, why would anyone else?
Now I want you to reflect on how you talk about yourself.
Imagine you’re telling your life story to a journalist: how much does your story rely on other characters versus being all about you?
There’s nothing wrong in referencing other people in your story but if its about how you reacted to them, then its more about them than you.
Understand how your lack of self love disempowered you. When you truly love yourself, how would you tell your life story differently?
We all suffer from a lack of love, true love, not the transactional variety. The place to start finding it is within your own heart.
Fall in love with yourself today.
Try this simple exercise for everything, because its amazing how quickly it changes…everything.
Before you do anything, stop and say ‘I do this…whatever it is, because I love myself.’
If you are a smoker, before you light up a cigarette, say ‘I am having this cigarette because I love myself.’
Imagine how quickly you’ll stop wanting to smoke.
I am currently using this to overcome my chocolate habit and its working. Even in the supermarket, as I reach out to pick up a bar and put it in the trolley, I’ll say, ‘I’m buying this for me to eat because I love myself.’ Its amazing how easy its getting to put the chocolate down and walk away.
And when you’re starting a new habit, for me its some easy yoga, I say to myself, @I’m doing this because I love myself’ and its so easy to get the mat out and get on with it, rather tan resisting something I know is good for me.
So, to recap:
- The most important relationship you have is with yourself.
- If you don’t take time to love and appreciate yourself how can you expect anyone else to do so.
- Make a list of all the things you love about yourself, no less than fifty and regularly give yourself congratulations and appreciation on being so special for having all these great qualities.
- Change your life story to be about you and not how you interacted with other people.
- Say ‘I’m doing this because I love myself.’ to everything.
- Fall in love with yourself like you are your own new lover and have an extended honeymoon where you just love on yourself all day.
You want your world to change? It starts within and the very first step is loving yourself. This changes everything.
Just writing this made me feel good. I’m off to the mirror to tell myself just how great a writer I am!
PS. Please like, comment and share below is this message connected with you. I love to hear how my work lands with people. And also, stop messing around! If you’re reading this, you need me. Email or message me to see how best we can work together to give you what you need. It might be a list of free resources I offer, it might be a program or course that’s not too expensive or you might want to jump right in and fully commit to yourself with a personal 1:1 hypnotherapycoaching program. Whatever you need, I’ll work with you to guide you to gaining it all. That’s a promise xx