Loving yourself is undeniably the most important thing you could do… not only for yourself, but for your loved ones as well. Unfortunately, more often than not, our first reaction is to simply use the mantra ” I love myself” and that is where it ends. If it were that easy, just walking up to a random stranger and telling them you loved them would have rather…. different consequences.
It has been my experience, that to love someone takes work. It takes doing the things you don’t want to, (most often exercise and diet ) for the benefit of your love (in this case yourself). It means telling the hard truths to ensure the well being of your love. Knowing that we as people have many elements of well being, and reminding our loves if they neglect any one of those elements. It means forgiving mistakes, enjoying good times, and showing concern for each others’ health and well being. Finding balance is crucial to every relationship, so why should your relationship with yourself be any different?
Too many people claim to love themselves, yet they do not see any change. They are absolutely clueless as to what it means to love yourself. So this is what we’re going to do. grab yourself a mirror. Close your eyes, and imagine. Think about the most amazing person in the world. Someone you would do absolutely anything for. Someone who’s happiness is your number one priority. Picture someone that you would defend tooth and nail against anyone trying to hurt. Someone you could not possibly live without. Imagine that person is in front of you. Now open your eyes, and see that person in the mirror.
How many of us can say that we treat ourselves exactly like we would that person we imagined? So if you love yourself, why don’t you? We are so willing to be stepped on, insulted, pushed around, taken advantage of and just basically bullied, all for the pretence that it’s for the ‘greater good’, that it’s our responsibility. That we need to for job stability, social acceptability or politeness. That we need to for the people we love, and yet, we say we love ourselves. Does that make any sense? Any sense at all? Why on earth would you be willing to put yourself through that horrible job, to feed the ones you love? Have you tried every possible alternative? I know you may think you have, but is it at all possible that you are only blinded by your responsibilities. Limited by your fear. And as a consequence, your own personal mental health, even your physical health will deteriorate.
Putting yourself second is in no way good for anyone in your life. You may not realise it, but if you are miserable in, your job for example… all for the sake of your family… when you get home after work, you are not the most pleasant person to be around. You are frustrated, angry, miserable, and without realising it, you may even start taking it out on your family. So where is the logic in that? Instead, try finding your own happiness, let it filter on to those around you, and everyone will be happier.
I’m not saying quit your job and stay at home, far from it. I’m saying, find what makes you happy. Do what you need to. Respect yourself. Love yourself. How? Instead of beating yourself up for mistakes, try seeing those mistakes as lessons. and be grateful for those lessons. As far as I’m concerned, it is easier to be grateful for a lesson, than to forgive yourself for a mistake. Like it or not, get some exercise. Your body needs it. If you have children, you wouldn’t want them to get home and sit in front of the t.v. everyday would you? You can acknowledge that they need exercise, so you’d prefer they play outside if possible… so why are you content to do it yourself? Remember, you deserve the body you want… the six pack abs, the hourglass figure… all you have to do is work for it, and believe it or not, you will get it.
Approval of others, is another huge problem. We are all different, so why would you need approval of some stranger to do something that you need. What to wear, what to eat, where to shop… the reason we have choice is so that we can exercise that choice. Make decisions based on our own personal needs as well as means. Shopping at exclusive stores, buying expensive cars, is it really necessary? If you can afford to, by all means, do. If it’s what you like, enjoy it… but make sure, absolutely sure, that it’s what you want, and not what you think will impress others. It’s one thing to work towards a goal, but if that goal has nothing to do with what makes you happy, it will do more damage than you can possibly imagine.
It is very important to realise that removing toxic people from your life is not something to feel bad about. If someone can’t accept you for who you are, they have no place in your life. Regardless of who they are. Love is supposed to be unconditional. As soon as someone starts putting conditions, it can’t be love, it can’t be good for you. Unless it’s to drive you to your full potential, they have no place in your life.
We need to learn to be happy on our own, that way we can be sure that the people we are with are not in our lives to fill something we can find ourselves. All too often we are with someone just so that we aren’t alone… is that any reason to be with someone? Why would you dislike your own company that much. If you can’t be with yourself, how can you expect someone else to want to be with you? It is entirely possible that you don’t find the right person because you are with the wrong person. You deserve to be happy, and putting the responsibility of making you happy on someone else is never going to work out well. It is just too much pressure, eventually they will be so exhausted from trying to make you happy, and forgetting about themselves, that they give up on you… where will that leave you?
Accepting your faults or flaws is just as important. Remember, there is only one you in the world, nobody can be you as well as you can… so why be someone else? If you look at that loved one, you see their flaws, and love them for it. You realise that the flaws make them perfectly imperfect. And you can even celebrate those flaws for them… why can’t we do that for ourselves? Is it that far a reach to believe our flaws are what define us? what makes us stand out from the crowd? Knowing and embracing our flaws can be a powerful tool in life, we can learn to use them. By knowing our flaws, we can learn to focus on our strengths and if we can do that… the possibilities are endless.
Remember, believe in yourself. Go after your dreams. You deserve your dream guy, the body you want, the position at the office, whatever it is, you deserve it. Go out and have an adventure, live life, loosen up and have some fun, what’s the point of doing anything if you don’t enjoy it. Do something every day… something that you love, something that puts a smile, not only on your face, but in your soul… something that makes you happy. But most of all, be grateful. Be grateful for what you have, for who you have, but more specifically, for who you are, because there is no one on earth that can offer the world what you can… You! There is so much more that can be said about this, I will be more than willing to discuss it in comments below. Please let me know what is holding you back. Share your thoughts and lessons, and who knows, we might even help someone who is in the same situation you were/are. After all, if we can make a difference in one person’s life, our lives will be different.