We need to make self-love a lifestyle, not just a practice! I truly believe that the root cause of the majority of the challenges and problems that we as humans face is a lack of self-love, self-worth and self-respect. This is the true epidemic that we face at this time in our evolution.
The funny thing is, though: we are all born with the natural ability to love, respect and value ourselves. It is not something we need to learn how to do as we grow up – for the most of us it is something we just need to remember. If you don’t believe me, go spend some time with a 2 year old. They will show you how easy it is to love and value ourselves.
For me, one of my greatest teachers is my niece Willow, who is almost 3 years old now. She has no issue at all with saying “I love you” to herself in the mirror or blowing herself kisses. She doesn’t stop herself from saying or doing anything because she is worried about how others may think or react. It is not in her consciousness to worry about judgment from others… yet.
If we are all born with the natural ability to love, respect and value ourselves, how do we lose it? From the first moment that we hear the words “no”, “you are wrong”, or “this is the way you have to do it”, we begin to question our own ability to think and feel for ourselves. We begin to give our power away to others in our lives, whether it is parents, siblings, friends, teachers – anyone who is in a role of authority or “knows better”.
We are taught from a young age to put the opinions of others above our own. As we grow older, the cycle continues until we get to be a teenager. At this point we begin to carve out our own identity and wonder who we truly are. We experiment with many forms of expressing ourselves, BUT, for the most part we look to other people or our accomplishments to validate what we say and do. We try to take our power back by looking to the very people that stripped it away from us in the first place.
For me, I was on this path until I was 19 years old. I had lost the majority of my self-esteem and self-worth at a young age – because I was labelled as “different” and “spirited” – so I never truly felt understood and accepted. In order to love ourselves fully, we need to feel understood and accepted.
It wasn’t until I had a complete breakdown that I realized that I was never going to get what I was truly looking for from anyone else but MYSELF! I realized that in order to feel accepted, loved and valued, that I needed to remember how to love, value and respect myself – and when I did that I would no longer rely on it coming from anyone or anything.
This is what we need to be teaching our kids from the moment they are born. Instead of looking to others in our lives to validate the feelings we have inside, we need to empower them to fill their own cups up from within. We need to stop stripping them of the very essence that they NEED the most to thrive in this world and instead show them the greatest gift of all is the ability to love ourselves, no matter what!