I asked my Facebook followers for some help:
“We need to redefine self-love. I’d love to hear your comments and thoughts about what it means to you to “love” yourself.”
My intention was to write a piece based on what I received in the answers, but the answers blew me away.
To start to transcribe these, well, I would be doing an injustice. To strip them of the beauty of the essence of the soul voice which spoke them? No, I cannot do that. These voices speak with the tone of joy, the tone of grief and despair, from loneliness, from self-discovery. From contentment, from love. All of them with love.
I have copied and pasted some of the comments I received here, almost exactly as they were written, so you can see what touches you, and allow them to open up your own mind to what self-love means to you. I also felt that to put all the comments here is overwhelming. So if you want to read more, you can click here to go to the original post.
Image by Rita Loyd.
It’s so difficult with self love when most of your life you gave love, but never received it.
Becoming self aware is key to self acceptance and love…
Being strong enough to take time for yourself to do the things you like or need to do, even when yourself and others try to make you feel guilty for being selfish.
I agree ‘selfish’ is not at all about the ‘wanting’ & ‘needing’ society professes it to mean regarding self absorbing & uncaring…… For me now at this time in my life, its about being ‘selfless’ – By being ‘selfless’ it allows me to not only love others ‘unconditionally but myself also! At this time of my life I find I’m strong enough to do so…
To love myself means to forgive myself for my mistakes. To love myself means to be able to look in the mirror and accept all of me just the way I am.
For me, loving myself is accepting all my feelings, good and bad and taking care to acknowledge them and honour the good feelings and try to accept or work through the bad.
Showing myself the same gentleness and compassion as I do others.
Self-love to me is telling that nasty demeaning voice in my head to shut up because what it says is not true.
Loving myself means that I remember that no matter what happens in the world, I am the only person that will always be with me. Doesn’t matter where I am or who I’m with, I am there. My mother always says “if nobody else loves me, my girls love me.” I’ve taken it a step further. If nobody else in the world loves me, I do.
Accepting myself flaws and all.knowing that I mess up sometime and its ok.not allowing other peoples comments about me get to because I know I am not perfect but always trying to do my best.doing things that benefit me first before all.Knowing that I am the most PERFECT being that has ever set foot on this earth.also being able to pour all that love into other beings…
I need to work on this! At 65, I don’t think my generation or my Mother’s was ever given permission to love yourself, that was not a positive thing to do.
Most hard to shed the voices from childhood teachings that told us to put others before ourselves, don’t be selfish, etc. So many tapes…Would guess this is pretty common
A while ago I told my mom that I was finally learning to love myself and her immediate response was, “That’s narcissistic!” So what it now means to love myself is to stay away from negative influences like my mom… caring too much about my Self to engage or get sucked into their judgment and negativity…
We re in the same boat, and it’s a lonely boat. I expect other people to understand me yet I won’t allow myself to do it for ME. I just don’t know anymore. I go through my daily life with anxiety and panic attacks. I don’t want to take ANYTHING for my “issues”. I feel, for me, if I could just keep my mouth shut, I’d be on easy street! I am …strong, and confident one minute then, and then for whatever reason, I am a child who needs a helping hand. Do I love myself? Sometimes. More often though, I am beating myself up because I am not like the “others”, the “normal” people of the world. And I put those words in quotes because, really, who’s to say THEY are “normal”?
Self-love, to honour your limits, to honour your own space, your time, to set boundaries that no matter what, nobody crosses. To take 15 minutes a day no matter what, to meditate. And my last suggestion: Learn the little word “No” it will empower you and bring you abundance!
Self love to me is about remembering that I am actually already love and that what I was searching for was actually already in me, I was just looking in the wrong direction.
Loving myself means staying in the present moment … Because in the present moment I have forgiven and forgotten the past … In the present moment I’m one with the God !!!
To me self love is primary as I think that if I don’t love myself, I cannot love others. In order to give love you must be full of love which comes from loving oneself. If one is full of pain,anger, bitterness and frustration, how can he/she give love??
Self love to me means to “honor” one self, listen to your inner voice, allow you to be “you”. Take time to do the things you enjoy in life. Know that you have a purpose and that you were created for a reason. Don’t hide the true “you”, but share “you” and be proud of who “you” are. We are all different for a reason and we all have our own “gifts” to share with the world!
To Love yourself , is being understanding to your own flaws , accepting & appreciating all the unique qualities that make you a special individual , and reflecting it back to others with compassion , kindness & love
Loving myself means that I am always on my own side, 100%. I back myself up.
learning to love myself was a matter of processing my past with understanding and compassion for myself. As a result of loving myself with understanding and compassion I am able to extend this towards others as well. Loving myself has also taught me self acceptance even with my imperfections and mistakes. I have more self respect and do not allow myself to be mistreated or abused. I have found through self love that receiving love and acceptance from others is not as important anymore because I love myself regardless of others opinions.
Staying as healthy as I can. I can love my spirit but don’t always want to choose healthy option for my wellbeing. So I know I can’t love myself as I think I do. Now look I’m gonna cry, hehehe.
To love Your self means to be good and respectful to Yourself. To appreciate Yourself and Your own company, To pamper Yourself sometimes and know You deserve it. To trust Yourself and Your instincts. To not allow other people to take You for granted or harm You. To stand up for Yourself and do what you need to do for Yourself to be happy. To not feel quilty when You say no !
Accepting my flaws as a part of my whole picture and staying in tune with my inner light.
How do you feel after reading these comments? Can you re-define self-love for yourself?
I’d love to hear your thoughts, please leave a comment below.
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