How Can I Love Myself More?
When Valentine’s Day rolls around each year, and there’s talk of love in the air, I like to contemplate how I can love myself more. How I can show up for myself more consistently, more compassionately, and more honestly.
I generally contemplate how I can continue to grow love in my heart for myself that outshines any negative self-talk or harsh criticism I hear myself say. We are often our own worst critics, and if you pay close enough attention to your inner dialogue, you may be surprised to find that what you say is sometimes downright harmful. Over the years I've learned to shift this script, and I do have to say, I rarely hear myself saying anything mean or criticizing to myself any longer.
And if I do start to hear any level of judgement, I quickly catch myself, and immediately change course to bring in understanding and compassion to myself.
*I don’t criticize myself up for the initial criticism.*
This only adds an additional layer of shame and judgement.
Committing to this practice of self-compassion has allowed me to build a level of trust within myself that feels so relieving and stabilizing.
Cultivating a trusting relationship with yourself is one of the foundational principles of body communication that I teach in the Golden Stone Wisdom School.
It simply takes dedication to being mindful and commitment to growing love for yourself. (Simple but not easy.) Self-love is one of the most important things we can cultivate as humans. It is absolutely true that more we love ourselves, the less hate we spread in the world. The more compassion we have for ourselves, the more compassion we can offer others. Everything is a reflection of how we feel inside. The more we accept and love ourselves, the less destructive behavior we will lash out onto the Earth and onto others. Valentine's Day arrives in just a couple days, and I encourage you to spend some time this week really loving up on yourself. We don’t need to wait for external validation or external sources to tell us we are loved. Although we all need that to some degree, we can also give that to ourselves first and foremost.
Below are a couple ideas and journal prompts to help jump-start a self-love cascade.
IDEAS FOR LOVING UP ON YOURSELF
What is the most common thing I criticize myself for/what do I often hear myself say that’s critical or judgement to myself?
What is one thing I can commit to doing for myself when I hear judgmental or critical language?
How can I tend to the needs of my inner child, my body, and my heart in a way that feels trusting and loving to myself?
What do I love about myself? Make a list as long as you can. It can be anything from physical features to quirky personality traits.
* Make an altar for yourself with all things that you love. Sit in front of it and allow it to shine your own love back at you. Really absorb the radiance of these objects you've selected * Make yourself your favorite meal and eat in candlelight * What is your love language? Tell yourself how much you love yourself by doing something in that language: For example, if your love language is quality time, take yourself out to a meal and spend the time asking yourself how you are and really listening. If you love language is gifts, buy yourself something special. If your love language is words of affirmation, write down or speak out loud to yourself all that you appreciate about yourself. * Give yourself a massage, rubbing lotion or oil into each body part, and sending it gratitude for all it does * Look in the mirror, into your eyes, and say “I love you” over and over again, until you really feel like you mean it * Write a love letter to yourself, then send it in the mail to yourself. When it arrives, open it and read aloud
And if you're in town and available I'd love to see you in person at the Gifts of the Body mini-retreat this coming Saturday.
Enjoy your own love!