For the past few months we focused on love and the relationship that we all have with ourselves. I pose the following question: How can we give what we don’t have? Think about this for a moment. If we don’t have love for who we are, how will we attract love from others? Our goal here is not to allow our own happiness to be dependent on others, but rather to surround ourselves with people in a nurturing environment to cultivate our personal growth.
In our February journaling challenge, we described ourselves with words inspired by nature, sports, activities we love and our heroes. This journaling exercise sent us on a discovery about what we think of ourselves and how we view our lives. Take for example, being passionate as a self-love word. How do I elevate this energy to incorporate it in my everyday existence for a solid foundation?
What if my energy has competition?
Let’s start by exploring competing energies. The opposite of passionate is apathetic or phlegmatic. For example, if I’m a passionate person, what will happen when I am surrounded by apathy? If every morning I wake up next to someone who judges my passions, dampens my enthusiasm and criticizes my choices led by my passions? My energy shuts down and my self-love shrinks.
On the other hand, my work is filled with passionate people, but with NO time for quiet reflection and it’s go-go-go ALL THE TIME. Their passion moved into hyperdrive and it has become something to chase, rather than a treasured fire within. This energy can lead to us becoming burnt-out especially if we don’t have any self-care regiments in place.
These are two extreme examples of how competing energies can influence your own self-love. Think about your own list of words that describe you.
How does external influences within your close relationships or work-life compete to deplete your energy?
Take a step back and consider the following:
How often do you go to a place where you feel at peace with yourself?
Which environment is not competing for your energy and love?
What if love competes with anger?
Anger is the outlaw of all emotions. When we are young, anger is one of the first emotions we learn to manage. In schools we are taught how to use a toolbox of skills, for example talking about our tantrums, walking away or ignoring anger. It is however important to acknowledge the importance of anger. It is a messenger for an emotional knot that needs to be untied immediately. At times when we experience extreme anger, our whole body reacts.
Some of the long-term health effects of anger include insomnia, increased anxiety, depression, high blood pressure and heart failure.
Let’s then deal with anger in a better way to enhance our love for ourselves. For a guided visualization on anger and how to manage it, kindly view our video:
Journaling about our anger and trying to understand the message is a great way to enhance the love for ourselves.
What if a life-altering event rocked my boat?
Divorce, death of a family member or friend, cancer diagnosis, a relationship that ended, and the list goes on. How do we elevate self-love when something so traumatic happens to us? In our Journaling Through Breast Cancer we have a section called:
I have breast cancer. I AM NOT BREAST CANCER.
This mantra can be applied to any and all life-altering events. Journal down the following:
I am (insert name). I had a (insert life altering event), I AM NOT (a life altering event).
Feel how your energy and self-love elevates!
Your relationship status, marital status, health status, sexual orientation is only a tick-box on forms we fill in. It does not define us.
What if I discover I always had it?
Our self-love is not contingent on what happens to us. We always have the power to love ourselves, sometimes it means to make tough choices that is right for us, but not for the other person. Understanding our emotions better by journaling and visualizations we allow our inner light to shine on the areas that need healing. If we have experienced a life-altering event, we can commit to our own health by completing a guided journal on that specific topic.
In the beginning we asked how we can give what we don’t have. Do you have and nurture self-love throughout your day?
What if I embrace my self-love?
Embrace yourself with words of love: you already have all the power and words within you. Through prayer, meditation, journaling and guided journaling you can elevate your self-love and become the person you and others respect and adore.
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