I have previously written about reaching out and loving others but how is that truly possible? What does it begin with and how do we get there?
Do you love the person who stares back at you every morning when you look in the mirror when you have just woken up? Do you ADMIRE, RESPECT, and have a all out APPRECIATION of who you are?
It seems like I hear more than anything from others when talking about themselves:
- “I wish I could….”
- “If only I could…”
- “I need to lose weight”, “my nose is too big”, “I am too short – too tall”
- “I should (shouldn’t) have…”
- “I am just not intelligent enough..”
- “I am not lovable or loved.”
The first place to look for love is from YOURSELF. The old song “looking for love in all the wrong places” has a lot of deeper meanings to it for me and may for you to if you take the time to contemplate it intensely. Searching for love seems to be the “modern” thing going on as we look around us. Dating sites have taken off in the last five years as people more and more are trying to find that wonderful thing called love wanting that human connection with someone. The media and advertising have taught us that we can never be satisfied with our bodies as they are now. They are constantly telling us we need to look like that perfect fitness trainer, constantly feed our bodies medications to improve, and become something we are not. It is amazing to watch the endless infomercials that tell us we aren’t good enough and need to work harder as well as diet more to become something else besides who we are. IT sells, sells, and sells while feeding us into the economic quicksand that drives us deeper and deeper into financial as well as emotional debt promising us a “better” you.
Why can’t I just be “me” and love that “me”?
I would like to start by looking at what we are as a human body. Those of us who are able to walk have a intricate web of wonderful parts that allow us to be mobile. There are 250,000 sweat glands in a pair of feet, when walking and the foot strikes the ground it forces the toes to carry half your body weight, and the sole of the foot contains more sensory nerve endings than any other part of the body (wonder why your foot is ticklish?). Your eyes contain 2 million working parts, are very quick healers, and are the most active muscle in the body (unless you are Mr. Universe). Each part of the human body contains numerous and wonderful functions that even still baffle science today. Most of us spend our lives looking for the supernatural, the miracles, or some sign there is something “higher” than we are. To me, the most sure sign of a higher power and loving force is the miraculous functions my body performs for me without any conscious input from me every moment of every day. It is as if someone or something has said:
” I am giving your conscious this wonderful vessel that contain inexhaustible complexities that is as wonderful as the galaxies themselves.”
Then we move on to how we treat ourselves and the self-loathing that seems more and more to permeate our lives today. The raising and parenting of small children is a great part of how we can become who we are today. If you take a child from birth and parent that child constantly about their shortcomings/sins , bodily flaws, physically beat them as punishment, and withhold love until their behavior warrants it, what do you think the outcome will be? Yet, it seems that is what many of us do to ourselves all day long. Yesterday is gone and tomorrow is not here – this moment is ALL that we have and to accept ourselves in that moment totally is what love is truly about. There may be no tomorrow where you can become the perfect person you may wish to be or there is no past – IT IS GONE FOREVER and there is NO NEED to constantly berate ourselves for past mistakes. It is NOW. WE are the perfect person now that exists in this moment with all our flaws, mistakes, and blemishes – we are a beautiful creation with it all, that is what makes us. I have a German Shepherd and as I watch him he just seems to always be enjoying the moment just as he is. If he makes a “mistake” I have never seen him berate himself or even worry about the color of his coat. He is in the moment with himself.
Is it truly loving yourself to hold resentment or anger over a lifetime? Or lashing out at the next person who comes our way when we are having a rough time? Or emotionally eating junk food until we feel “satisfied”?
There is one person we will spend our entire life with and that is the wonderful “me”. Yet, it is our decision how we will look at ourselves – wonderful me or the flawed, sinful wretched being we are taught. The great thing about our brains it is scientifically shown it CAN change with the discovery of plasticity with the brain. No matter where we are now with our thinking of ourselves, it CAN be altered. Is it always easy? Absolutely not but it is the most worthy adventure we can ever take on – loving ourselves.
What is it you love to do? What is your body telling you it needs today with your cooperation to function for you optimally? If we love ourselves, each moment of the day the greatest thought we can have is what will I do that is going to benefit my well-being. Can I say no, is it okay to detach from this situation, or do I need to take a breather and just go out into nature to replenish my soul? Developing true self-love can take some time and effort but it is the most worthwhile investment we will ever endeavor in this life and really doesn’t take any money to cultivate.
The irony of it all is self-love is not someone else telling us we need to be different, act different, or look different but when we truly love ourselves and accept ourselves our we are now, we want to be better to ourselves and excel in our ways to benefit my lifestyle. The true motivation in lifestyle changes begins when we truly love ourselves.
Then and only then can we reach out in true love to our fellow human beings. I know it is a controversy but I believe that we cannot truly love another being in the truest sense until we learn that deep love for ourselves first because we only pass along what we have inside ourselves to others. Then with that love we have truly developed for ourselves can be passed to all those we come into contact with.
“You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.”
“There are two basic motivating forces: fear and love. When we are afraid, we pull back from life. When we are in love, we open to all that life has to offer with passion, excitement, and acceptance. We need to learn to love ourselves first, in all our glory and our imperfections. If we cannot love ourselves, we cannot fully open to our ability to love others or our potential to create. Evolution and all hopes for a better world rest in the fearlessness and open-hearted vision of people who embrace life.”
You are beautiful and worth it!!!
LOVING SELF= Respect Ourselves Admire Ourselves Appreciate Ourselves