Loving yourself is the first step in loving someone else. Are you on the right path?
Beauty is about love. There are millions of people seeking beauty from the outside in with make up, spanks and surgeries. On some level we are all preoccupied with beauty. Today, I am present to love. I am aware that after a lifetime of not loving myself that I finally do. I look in the mirror and I'm ok with myself. Finally. What a relief! My view of myself is still somewhat distorted and I know this by the degree of my ability to accept a compliment. I got to a place of loving myself several years ago and luckily it has sustained through today.
When I observe children looking at themselves in the mirror, I am touched. They are simply delighted with themselves. They adore themselves. What happened between then and now? Media, social pressures, and expectations is what happens. Nonetheless, it feels good to love yourself. If you are looking for an improved relationship with your loved ones or if you are looking for a relationship, the first step is loving yourself. How does this come to be? What has to shift in order for the seeing to occur? The seeing of who you really are and the acknowledgement, admiration, and love that emerges though awareness are all parts of it. It is fundamentally about acceptance and forgiveness. Loving yourself is about shifting your relationship with yourself to one of patience, love and understanding.
If I were to record the conversations going on inside your head, what would I hear? Would it be a dialog of loving kindness? Or would it be berating and self-criticizing? The shift has to occur within you, and if it doesn't you are going to be smearing your inner dialog onto everyone you interact with. This could be positive or negative. Just as we clean our bodies and hands we have to create the space to clear our thoughts and impressions. Because we are so attached to this conversation, it can be difficult to distinguish what the conversation IS because we are inside of it! Read on to learn about what type of conversation you're having and how to change it if it's not the most flattering convo you should be listening to.
Step 1: Define The Conversation
What are you thinking of yourself to yourself? Start to track the conversations you are having inside of yourself and how you are feeling as a result. Write the results of this down and see the patterns that manifest. Rest assured that your life is a direct result of these conversations. All the good and the bad. You are manifesting it all.
Step 2: Define The Conversation You Want To Be Having
If you are in pain because you are upset or have a physical problem, you have a dialog with this pain. If you can start to shift the conversation inside of yourself, you may see a shift in the experience of the pain. Try practicing this whether you are in pain or not. Try practicing a new conversation that is in line with the relationship you choose to cultivate with yourself.
Step 3: Change The Conversation
Interrupt yourself on purpose and with intention. This is a tricky practice but you can do it. No one is perfect and I encourage you to try and keep trying. Intentionally catch yourself criticizing yourself or putting yourself down, and then stop. Try to imagine you are speaking to a friend or a loved one and make a change in the dialog.
Please comment as to what is showing up for you in this process. I am here to help. You may encounter resistance or you may not. Let me know and join the conversation!
More personal development coach advice on YourTango:
- Bad Body Image? 15 Ways To Improve Your Self-Esteem
- 3 Simple Steps To Improve Your Self-Confidence
- Love: Tips & Expert Advice
This article was originally published at Helene's Kitchen. Reprinted with permission from the author.