Self Love – A long and messy business

As I have mentioned before, my journey to self love only really began a couple of years ago. It started the moment that I decided to get up and do something for myself. It started the minute I took a long hard look at my life and decided that I could not carry on hurting myself in the way that I was

A sparkly pink heart on a dark background

So when I say that true self love is a challenge, it is because I know just how hard it it. My journey towards self love had been a roller coaster and I still have to remind myself to take time out for myself regularly.  

To summarise, my self love journey has been painful/stressful/kinda gross. I have sobbed, I have ran out of rooms, I have lost my temper, I have stayed in bed, I have hidden, I have avoided, I have procrastinated, I have been in so much pain, I have had panic attacks that felt like what I imagine an actual heart attack feels like and I have felt shame that has seen me locked away for YEARS on end.

What is Self Love

For me, Self Love first and foremost is self knowledge. You have to know who you are before you can begin to give to yourself..properly.

It is about digging deep and really understanding who you are at your root and why you have evolved into who you are today without judgement. It is about breaking yourself down, in order to build yourself back up again. It is about self compassion and acceptance no matter where you are right now. It is about letting people go out of love instead of clinging on to them out of fear. It’s about looking in the mirror and seeing all the things that make you, you. It’s about stumbling over and over again and getting back up again. It’s about seeing and accepting your imperfections. It’s about seeing all of your mess, chaos, crazy and loving you anyway. It’s about knowing that you were created as you are and this is who you are meant to be. It is about allowing yourself the time and space to really feel and that can be messy. Really messy. 

Self Care and Self Love are Different

..Because you can do all the self care activities in the world. You can go on endless trips to coffee shops, indulge yourself in salt baths, have a haircut a week etc etc. but until you do the work of sitting with yourself and holding yourself accountable, and understanding who you are and what made you so distant from yourself in the first place, you cannot really being to love yourself. 

But with Self Love comes growth and growth is a challenge and its scary and risky and long. So we tend to avoid it because it is far easier to mask the emptiness. It is just so much more comfortable to keep things as they are.

With that being said, If you are struggling with Self Love, here is my message to you:

3 signs for self love on a fence

Take time out to get to know who you are. Journal and journal and journal until you are crystal clear on this. 

Working through the pain will be so worth it.

Prioritising yourself and caring for yourself will change your life.

Self Love will lead to Self Respect.

Honouring yourself will take a lot of time and effort but you are worth it. 

Holding yourself accountable is important but with that comes self forgiveness too. You have to be able to forgive yourself and treat yourself in the same way you would, someone who you really care about.

You have to give yourself space to be human. You will mess up over and over and that is OK. 

You won’t always get it right because loving yourself is a life long thing with many stops along the way. At times you will get it just right and at other times, you will fail but once you do the work, you will know what to do to get right back on track no matter how many times you ‘mess up’. 

A self love journal on a pink background

..And when you love yourself:

. Your boundaries will be firmly in place.

.  You will hold yourself accountable.

. You wont’t rely on outside validation or recognition.

. You will see and know your own worth!

. You will take back responsibility for your own happiness and know that the power was in you all along.

. You will put your needs first.

. You will break old habits and conditioning.

. You will bloom like you never have before and the possibilities will become endless.You will reach new heights and smash all your goals. You will make yourself unstoppable.

. You will learn to receive love and give love in a whole new way. 

. You will become hyper aware of your own self so you won’t take on what isn’t yours.

. You won’t settle for just any thing. 

. You will allow yourself to be vulnerable.

. You will only allow people who see your value, to enter or stay in your life.

. You won’t put up with nonsense from others.

. You won’t be beating yourself up for where or what you should be.

. You won’t be unkind to yourself when you fall down.

. You will be able to give back. 

. You will step outside of your comfort zone over and over again and live the life you always wanted to but thought  you couldn’t.

. You will blossom and be able to look in the mirror at all that you are and be grateful.

So go love yourself and know that you deserve every bit of goodness that is coming your way.

To read more on my favourite topic, see these posts:

When Self Care is not possible

12 ways to be kind to yourself every day

Learning to live life in the slow lane

 

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