Dear Self, I Love You
It’s February and not surprisingly, we are writing about love. Our focus for today is the basic building block of love–the love we hold for ourselves. Truly, without self-love, we have little hope of personal joy or the fulfillment we glean from loving others.
Why is it so difficult to love ourselves? When was the last time you looked into the mirror and said, “I love you.” Why does a search on amazon.com for “self love,” yield 219,147 results? Self-help books advancing self-love are prolific. We might assume the ability to love ourselves would be innate–hardwired, and acceptance of a Higher Power within us would automatically encourage loving kindness toward ourselves.
Our past few blogs included a discussion of shame. In order to appreciate our unique selves, we must do away with shame and take a look inside, applying unconditional positive regard. True compassion and self-acceptance no matter what, allowing ourselves human imperfection.
Let’s try an activity. On a notepad or in a journal, title a fresh page, “Best Friend.” List every quality or action you wish for in that person. Here is the list we created:
- Shares similar interests
- Trustworthy confidant
- Encourages during difficult times, as well as those of success and prosperity
- Dreams with me–pushes me toward my dreams
- Calls me on my sh@#
- Fun–laughs with me
Now that we have this person outlined and have come to an understanding of what we truly are searching for, we can begin to cultivate that ideal best friend . . .within ourselves. By being our own best friend, we provide for ourselves physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually and socially. For some, this may entail a complete shift in thought and action. For others, a simple reminder may suffice. For most of us, self-love is not automatic and is a process.
Next week: Practical ideas on how to be our own best friend.
“You must love yourself before you love another. By accepting yourself and fully being what you are, your simple presence can make others happy. You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love & affection.” ~Buddha [Psychology Today]
More “Best Quotes on Self-Love” from Psychology Today: