How Self-Love Saved My Life:
I once despised the term self-love. I thought it was so narcissistic to “love yourself.” I couldn’t even resonate with authors who wrote about self-love as I found myself flipping through their books on the shelves. At the time, I also had a hard time finding things to truly love about myself, even though I had plenty of reasons to. I just could not accept love from myself. It felt wrong and selfish to be so “into one’s self.” I suppose I only knew the egoic side of love back then, rather than the unconditional, Divine side that I know now. It was easy to accept unconditional love from my cat, but not from myself?
Can you relate?
I got to a point in my mid-20s that was really dark. You couldn’t quite see it from the outside unless you knew what to look for, but I was depressed. Call it the “Quarter Life Crisis,” when you think you should be further along than you are, and you get all down on yourself about it. I was also trying to run away from myself to avoid dealing with the depressing stuff, aka, my emotions.
I couldn’t run for too long though. Eventually, I’d hit my darkest point.
You could say I was being presented with a “death door” as the topic of death and the word itself were appearing everywhere in my reality. Maybe I had kinda invited it in, and it scared the crap outta me. So much so, I ran for the Light by joining a group meditation center, where I started to learn what love is and begin directing it towards myself through meditation.
A few years later, I was intuitively guided to inner child work, as explained in another recent article of mine. With a sincere interest to dig deep and find the scared little girl still in hiding, I was able to re-connect with the parts of me that were hurting the most. I held that little girl with love as I explained the truth to her. I “pulled back the curtain” and showed my inner child what was really going on, from the highest perspective I had access to, and helped her see the experience in a new way that felt much lighter and bestowed her with wisdom.
Over the past 3 years, I’ve been deep in my healing journey, detangling all the emotional ties, and rebuilding my foundation and boundaries from the ground up.
This has been a time when I needed my own love and support, the MOST. Having learned that I cannot look externally for the love I needed to re-grow, I, again, turned within. The first step was accepting where I was at. There was no more room for criticizing myself when all I really wanted was my cooperation and support. I learned to change the negative self-talk to positive encouragement and lots of reassurance. Rather than being my own worst enemy, I learned to be my own best friend.
In the same timeframe, I was guided to change my diet and adopt a much healthier menu. I’m now gluten-free and dairy-free due to food allergies that were making me miserable. That healing experience taught me how to care for and cook for myself in ways I’d not known before. I actually started to enjoy this new creative outlet! It became nice to be able to make myself a delicious and well-presented meal, and to eat it with my new favorite company! Me!
While along my journey, I also stopped complaining about things I could change, which made me feel more empowered to actually change them. I made sure to notice the subtleties showing feedback of my improvement, congratulate myself on small accomplishments, and be happy and understanding with my progress.
I honestly just decided to get on my own team.
I really couldn’t get far without ALL of me being on board and aligned. I mean, the entire Universe is on my side, but I’m not on my side? Come on now. Let’s wake up.
My inner child has been the most challenging part of me to get on board and aligned, so I am sure to do things she likes and incorporate her essence into my adult life in some way, so she still feels included. This may consist of adult coloring, which in her eyes is coloring more elaborate pictures with professional colored pencils, and doing anything creative for that matter. I allow myself to get excited about little things my younger self would love too, whether it be eating chocolate, petting a cat, or liking rainbows and unicorns. When that little girl feels loved, she’ll do anything for me.
Looking back, my entire healing journey has been an act of self-love to the fullest capacity!
For sure, had I not sought out healing from the desire to be better and be happy with myself, I would be incredibly empty and living a life with only flashes of happiness, joy, and bliss here and there. In fact, I remember now how I never thought I could “be happy all the time.” I accepted my moodiness and grumpiness as me (not knowing it was really because I was an empath with hormonal imbalances due to the “food” I was eating.) Loving myself and therefore healing myself has helped me come a long way.
Some final words on loving yourself I’ve learned along the way: Be the person, for yourself, you’re wishing for or looking for on the outside.
Treat yourself with kindness; you’re doing the best you can do. Communicate with yourself either through a journal, having inward talks with yourself in meditation or having outward talks with yourself in conversation. Speak to yourself with love and respect, and definitely give yourself a break. It could save your life and guide it in a whole new direction!
After all, you need more love, not less.