Self love is the new psychology and super dooper wellness buzz word! ‘They’ say if we master self love then life becomes like a ‘walk in the park’. Sounds lovely, but how do we love ourselves?
Oh Courtney… I love you!
Is it just me or is there something a bit schizophrenic about loving yourself? I spent time with a master in India who used to ask the same question. She would say “when you love yourself, who is loving who?” It is a very powerful question… who is the ‘I’ that loves ‘yourself’?
You are love itself. Your very essence is love. Not love because of this or that achievement. Not love because you were a good girl or boy. Just good old plain love…for absolutely no flippin reason. An endless expanse of love, love love. Don’t just believe me. Close your eyes and look all the way to the bottom of the ‘cookie jar’ and see for yourself.
Love is your nature. Love cannot be ‘done’. It is not a particular action. It is a spontaneous overflow that ripples from the core of who you are and out into the world. True love is not based on conditions. It doesn’t take effort or practice…it simply flows when triggered by life.
Who knows when a ripple of love will appear and disappear on the surface of life, while the ocean of love that it emerged from remains eternally full. So from this perspective do we really need to learn to love ourselves? OR do we just need to wake up to the truth that we are love, and the rest then takes care of itself?
Does the tree love itself? Does the ocean love itself? No, they simply are love.
True self love requires our inner eyes to awaken to see all that arises with love. This includes all of our human imperfections and challenges that arise in each moment. The illnesses, painful emotions, destructive thoughts, the dramas, the annoying people, the shitty days, the heartbreak, the tragedies…they are all a reminder or a sign post guiding us back to the truth…you are love.Ok enough big picture talk…lets break it down…and get clear and simple.
5 practical expressions of self love
1. Physical self love– NOURISH, eat well, exercise, create a healthy lifestyle, be creative, follow your dreams, surround yourself with supportive people, sleep well/rest, spend time in nature, balance work, rest and play. Have fun, laugh alot!
2. Mental self love- OPEN – meditate, become the witness of your thoughts, realize you are not your thoughts and withdraw belief in destructive thoughts, open your mind to allow all thoughts to move through, focus beyond thought and allow your deeper intuition to be heard.
3. Emotional self love- FLOW – welcome, embrace and release any emotion that arises with acceptance and love, express yourself with maturity, honesty and authenticity, focus beyond emotions and allow your deeper intuition to be heard.
4. Spiritual self love- AWAKEN – listen to and follow the guidance of your intuition and instinct AT ALL TIMES, say yes and no according to the guidance of your instincts, trust the flow of life.
5. The essence of self love – when you fully realize you are love itself…self love is no longer a practice or a discipline…it is a natural overflow.
Photo by Ally Aubry