The Vow of A Lifetime

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Self-love (noun): “regard for one’s own well-being and happiness” – this is the straightforward definition of what loving yourself is. Self-love, in and of itself, should be an action.

It is a life-long vow to love yourself in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. Self-love is not, and should not, be a result tied to our life’s achievements.

Think about it: success in love, business and health are major things to celebrate, but they will always carry the baggage of the great unknown. Things, good or bad, may happen, and we will never known when, why or how. We can only control our reactions to them and what we do after the fact.

So, why would you lay the foundation vital to self-love on an unstable, ever shifting tide? That would be madness.

Wherever you find yourself at this very moment, whether it’s lounging around the house or on your lunch break, ask yourself: “Do I love myself?”

The answer should be a resounding hell yes.

If it’s anything short of that, you are sadly missing out on appreciating the most complex, compelling, charming person you will ever come to know throughout your existence.

You might disagree with that – you’ll say you’ve met some pretty incredible people who you feel are worthier of wearing those labels donned on a royal blue sash. And sure, we will all cross paths with individuals who will change our lives, touch them in ways we never thought possible, that much is true.

But they will never be you.

And don’t make the second mistake of believing that the act of self-love is dependent on the value of others. You can perfectly love and appreciate every fiber of your being without diminishing the respect, admiration and love you feel for others.

The very mind you have been cultivating since the early days of childhood wonder, the very eyes that look back at you in every surface’s reflection, the very body that has experienced every ache and pain throughout the years, the emotional whirlwinds life has swept you up in and you have survived, and years’ worth of dreams, fears and goals... No one can remember those experiences the way you do.

With whom else have you shared such a personal experience – someone who has heard every criticism and praise, every nag and grace, and every fearful or calming thought that’s bubbled up in your head?

No one other than you can ever live your life through a first-person perspective, and that is a precious gift.

Wherever you are right now, whoever you find yourself to be – become aware of it. Cultivate this vital sense of self-awareness, and choose to love yourself, as you are right now.

Whether you find yourself in a career, in love or in a financial stump, none of that is ever a reason to skimp on investing in yourself.

You will pick yourself up and get back on track.

The tides of life carry with them uncontrolled variables, and you will learn to adjust your sails when necessary. But, you have to believe and trust in yourself, and that takes love to do so.

If you are not sure where to start, a simple step is to engage in daily, positive self-affirmations. When you wake up in the morning and are getting ready to start your day, look yourself in the mirror, and admire that beautiful person looking back at you.

Tell yourself, out loud, something positive. Maybe it’s, “I like my curls,” or, “I have kind eyes.” Make it genuine.

Write yourself positive messages on post-its and leave them in places you’re often in, such as your kitchen, bathroom or office. Create new ones often, and recite them in your mind.

And whenever that Negative Nancy voice pops up in your thoughts, shrug it off and go on with your day.

Would you spend the entire day dwelling on the rude person you crossed paths with on your morning commute? Would it still be eating away at your mind by dinnertime?

Exactly. “Bye, Felicia/Felipe” those criticisms and keep doing you.

Self-love doesn’t come easy to some, and that’s okay. The journey may take time, but don’t all relationships that are worth it?

The relationship with yourself is the longest one you will ever have, so see it with the same eyes you see those you love.

Protect it. Cultivate it. Let it bloom.

Make self-love the overdue vow you have always deserved.