These couple of weeks have been a little tough on me. I’ve at times, been left feeling a tad overwhelmed from the twists and turns from Life itself. It’s been a roller-coaster ride, and yes I’ve been screaming my lungs and heart out – a helluva ride indeed. So a big “Thanks Life!” for showing me that I’m resilient and adaptable and that there’s this great willingness for me to immerse even more into the many adventures that will come.

Truth be told, I’ve been circling and working through a particular concept for what seems like eternity and forever: what is self-love? And what does it personally mean for me to love myself, and how do I practice self-love in my day-to-day?

Self-love is the practice of loving all parts of the self – it is the unconditional acceptance and nurturing of who we are, who we have been and who we are going to be.

In this definition, self-love is a process of accepting unconditionally whoever we are at this moment in time. Self-love is the perspective of attending to one’s needs, compassionately and yet fiercely. Self-love is a practice: it teaches us worthiness, it teaches us friendship, it imparts growth.

For myself, self-love has been what keeps me going when times get tough and unbearable. It allows me to care for myself; caring for facets of me that need it most. Self-love is continually re-affirming, and yet does not impinge upon the rights and well-being of other people. It is holistic in that sense.

Screaming and striking out at someone that has hurt us is not self-love, it is a protective mechanism. The better way to care for ourselves in those situations would be to withdraw, reflect and re-assess: what am I actually feeling hurt about? What of my needs are not met now, and what are they really about? How can I get better allow those needs to be met? If I cannot meet those needs, how can I better allow the other party (or parties) to meet these needs that I have?

So keep caring and loving yourselves, all parts of what makes you, you. The insecurities, the fears, the strengths, the unique qualities and characteristics, the side of you that you never want people to see, as well as the side of you that you do want people to see.

When we fully and completely accept whoever we are, we might then be more ready to grow into who we might be.

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