The Art Of Self Love
I’ve always loved the quote “Self-love isn’t vanity, it’s sanity”, (Katrina Mayer) and I agree that we must learn to love ourselves before we love others. On the flip side, this statement can be misleading and almost assumes that learning to love ourselves is a new concept. What we may fail to remember, is that we were all once full of self-love! As young children, we never thought that we were not good enough, not attractive enough or not clever enough!
As we grow however, we misinterpret experiences and believe that we are not enough. Trusting that others know us better than ourselves we begin to live moulded by the opinions of others. We focus on what we perceive to be wrong with us, rather than what’s right. Self-love can easily become self-loathing without the right knowledge. So how do we take back what is rightfully ours?
The first step is to understand that you may be believing fictional things about yourself based on your experiences. If a parent left the family home when you were young for example, you may have started to believe that you were not enough. You did the best you could with the knowledge that you had at the time to make sense of the situation. As an adult though, it’s possible to look back and ask yourself, “Was that really about me, or were my parents simply not getting along?”. When we look back at our experiences from a logical point of view, we can understand that as children we lack knowledge and create fictional stories about ourselves based on what we experience. As adults, we have the ability to reflect on challenging times. We have the ability to understand that the fiction that we created holds us back and looking at the facts can help us retrieve self-love. The second step is to understand that the opinions of others do not have to define our reality. If people try to bring you down with their words, it’s not about you it’s about their insecurities. It’s easier for them to keep you down than for them to rise. Remember that what we go through in life doesn’t have to define us, but it can help to find us. And it’s never too late to take back self-love!
I highly recommend this book by David Hamilton, “I Heart Me” to help you re-discover your self love: