The Secret to Loving Yourself
You were born to love yourself
And early on, you did. Way back, when you were wee, you thought we were greatest thing since sliced bread and life was grand.
Then, you learned that the sun didn’t actually rise and set on your head. And it was kind of painful.
If you know any toddlers, you know this is a good thing. It was a critical stage in your development, this learning to take others in and to see how your behavior affected them.
You began to measure your impact on the world - to make sure that it brought more pleasure than pain, not just for you, but for everyone around you.
That, too, was a good thing.
But somewhere along the way, things like guilt and shame got tangled up in learning how to "play nice," and they started to cloud over that easy self-love you had. And little by little, you could barely access it at all.
That, my friend, is not a good thing.
And it’s a really hard thing to change. It’s difficult to untangle it all without falling into self-judgement or regret.
So how do you embrace all of those hard won, important lessons and still allow yourself to bask in all your greatest-thing-since-sliced-bread glory?
There’s a back door.
An easy way in. A simple little thing that you already know how to do that will allow you to love yourself without getting tangled up in all the negative junk.
Feeling proud, truly proud of yourself, is the feeling of self-love. Practice it enough, and you’ve got an easy remedy to quiet that inner critic.
What are you proud of?
Proud Out Loud
Every day this week, challenge yourself to find three things that you’re proud of.
These are things about you or things that you’ve done. "I’m proud of my kids" doesn’t count. "I’m proud of helping my kid stay calm in the ER when she broke her leg even though I was freaking out inside" does.
And they can be anything at all… "I’m proud that I left 5 french fries on the plate" would count.
As they occur, jot them down in a journal or in the notes app on your phone.
At the end of each day, look at your notes and choose the one that you’re most proud of. Relive the moment until you can feel the sensation of pride in your body…until a smile washes over your face.
Sit with that feeling for a moment or two.
You really are the greatest thing since sliced bread, aren’t you?