What is Self-Love?
I found self-love in the middle of hating myself…well hating my life. It was a low point and I had no meaning for me or for life. I wished it would all go away, except I had children and couldn’t imagine not figuring out a way out the despair I found myself in. I felt like if I didn’t find a way, how can I expect for them to find one one day?
So I started to practice meditation and with it began to heal my inner angst caused by suppressed emotional memories. Those things that held me back and caused damage to my identity. I worked on the buried deep issues that held me back from seeing my life as worthy. I kept on it because I had to succeed; there was no other choice for me, I had others that depended on me.
Hit Rock Bottom
There is no better place to start then rock bottom. Really, you can’t sink deeper. However, not everyone needs to reach this level to begin emerging into love and joy for life, for the self. Self-love is not about treating yourself better by having a spa day or an extra piece of chocolate.
The psychological definition and suggestions on its treatment gives the idea that self-love is like an injury you can heal by simply talking, or taking temporary medications. Those of us who have reached a different level of understand of the self, come to realize it’s too narrow a wish to want to acquire self-love.
Why be satisfied with a piece of a puzzle when you can have all the pieces. Don’t be gratified with wanting so little for yourself; you can have a life beyond your greatest expectations. You just have to unleash the shell you call you and find the center we call ALL.
It’s in the ALL
Let me explain what the ALL is, the ALL is a unifying center that connects everything together. An easier way to explain this is to give you a picture and have you connect the emotion that is the ALL.
If you have ever been to a church and have experienced that beautiful quietness and serenity of everyone praying and listening to angelic music, at that moment that feeling you felt, so connected to everything, that is the ALL.
Also, if you are not religious, how about picturing yourself back at one of your favorite hikes and you stop for a drink of water at a particularly picturesque rock that overlooks at a slopping mountainside. That feeling you get from that vastness and beauty makes you feel so connected to everything within you, all at once…that is the ALL.
So self-love is finding this inner connectedness to everything within you and outside of you, all at the same time. When you walk around in your daily life with that kind of beauty that is when you have realized you have reached self-love, and nothing can ever take that away, not ugly people, not horrible politics, not pettiness from people…nothing!
How to find it
The best way to find self-love or self-realization is by meditating. Having a meditative way of living seems to bring about a life satisfaction unlike any “self-love “day you could ever hope for. The reason this helps is because it calms the negative voice inside us. calm that voice and watch your self-love grow.
Since Self-love is really not about the self, but about the inner peace, you will find it easier to take care of the body (local self). Self-peace is quite extraordinary; it makes you feel contentment, without a cause. When you feel contentment you are capable of living life just for the sake of living.
Living life without a reason for finding something is truly what we are here for. When you stop searching, you stop suffering. Suffering is caused by constant longing to belong to something bigger. That something bigger is a beautiful unity that you might recognize as God, Spirit, Cosmos, Science, Ultimate Knowledge, or Creation.
When you find that unity in you, you stop looking, you find the most amazing inner peace. But don’t think that peace means a complete stop, in the contrary for most it means an unleashing of energy for life quests.
What does love have to do with it?
Now I hope you are not shaking your head in disbelief and saying, so what, what does that have to do with self-love? Well we are really only looking for contentment, right?
So once you are happy with YOU, you begin to busily live life as you always wanted to. Gladness with you can lead to uninhibited decision-making. Decisions are often made by the scared part of us, the one that whispers that others might not like what we do or choose. If that is quiet, you get to choose what you love without any internal fight about “what others think. Self -love is about being respectful of you and your wishes.
#1 The Body
Respect for your body is allowing your body to get enough nutrition, sleep and exercise.
Nutrition is a vital part in our care, without it we see increase in disease, and overall depletion of nutrients that our bodies need to sustain life. Getting adequate nutrition is really not that hard, we tend to make it harder.
Our bodies react to just about everything, so the art of the game is to lessen the amount of reactions. One way is to look at science; foods such as fruits and vegetables have the least damage to our bodies.
Second is nuts, and grains. Third is fish, and other animal products including milk and eggs(except honey). Any food after second through third, eat minimally.
Another thing that complexes this food thing is understanding what your goals are for life. Do you want a body builder physic, run a marathon, practice yoga, or just do as little as possible.
Food consumption should be adjusted according to your bodies needs, listen to your body.
If you have a body, then you need sleep. People are constantly minimizing their sleep to fit hectic-ness in. Sleep is when our bodies repair by realign your spine, increasing collagen, and boosting immunity.
You would not travel in a car without maintenance, so don’t suffer needlessly. Go to bed on time. Most things can wait till morning, or be done earlier. The only people with an excuse for not getting enough sleep are new parents, and other caretakers with responsibilities.
That’s it; everyone else should disconnect from whatever is keeping them awake and make sleep a priority.
Exercise is any movement that raises your heart rate a bit and then brings it down. Going for walks, working out in the yard, any activity outside is beneficial. Check out Delighted Minds post on 12 Tips How To Start Working Out And Make It a Habit
Fresh air is nature’s nectar; the energy that we get from just being around nature is real and has been documented scientifically. Take your cat for a walk, or maybe your kids, or mom.
#2 The Mind
Taking care of the mind is second, although the mind is part of the body. One of the biggest ways of taking care of you mentally is to meditate.
Once again I urge you to see the amazing meditation, it can decrease anxiety and bring overall wellbeing. But the number one reason for starting meditation is FINDING YOU! It calms that darn mind of yours and allows for a deeper connection that you are seeking. Here is my favorite meditation.
Everyone that has ever stuck consistently to a mind calming routine such as meditation, yoga, or deep mindfulness has obtained a deeper sense of self.
If you want to find self-love you have to meditate (I am using meditation as a generality. I am referring to meditation, yoga, and mindfulness).
Emotional regulation is part of mind care. Regulation of reactions can lead to control and mastery of other reactions. You learn to let go of jealousy, anger, laziness, and other self-sabotaging emotional holds.
Everyone should want to learn to self-regulate. Meditation regulate emotions like anger, and stress. To find out More on How Your Body Changes With Meditation click here.
Gracefulness is an often a forgotten self-love part. How can you learn to love you, when you are not grateful for your life, for what makes you alive?
Look for ways of increasing your grace by giving thanks to more things around you, your home, your car, your husband, girlfriend, kids, makeup, everything deserves your gentle grace. Practice looking at something everyday and giving it thanks.
This is way therapist encourage a gratitude journal. People naturally notice a grace lifting up their life after they begin to make it part of their every day routine.
Get rid off STUFF. I don’t mean get organized, just learn to let go off things around you that are making you stressed. Maybe you have too much laundry to do. Or you notice yourself organizing more and more.
You should ask yourself, why? Why, am I constantly buying new and more stuff? Buy with awareness things you need. Yes sometimes you will NEED a new tool or make up set, but at least you bought it with awareness for its need. This will build on your ability to give grace.
Last, but so important is in-clusivity without attachment. Learn to love those around you from the mail-man to your mother, without judgment. Have you ever chatted with your best friend and you thought, ‘man this such a nice moment’? You can have that with anybody.
We have created a need for inclusion, inclusivity only creates exclusivity, but if you release that hold of having inclusion, you open tremendous opportunities. You might never feel lonely again.
I suggest you choose a moment per day and focus on any person in your path, don’t judge, or ask of anything back emotionally for yourself, just be there smile, if they say something listen intently and make it about them. Once you finish go on about your day and notice an increase in self-fulfillment.
It really does give you joy and meaning to just give your full attention to someone and expect nothing back. Once you do this for everyone in your life, you no longer feel like you have a deficit in love, but abundance in joy.
True Meaning of Self-Love
I leave you with a brief ending.
When you love where you are, you love who you are. Respect for the body, mind and soul are all consequences of being in peace with you.
Your body becomes as important to you, as your mind. Things like sleep; food, exercise and environment become regulated with minimal effort.
Self-love begins inside of you by quieting the negative voice. Begin with meditation and see the self-dissolve to show a deeper connection to everything, this is the true meaning of self-love.
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