4 Ways To Love Yourself More…Written by Andrew_McFarlane
First things first….
You love yourself.
This is not debatable. We must start this conversation from an understanding that every human being loves themselves.
It is very clear when you consider our fundamental desires. We all want to be happy, healthy, inspired, and deep down live fulfilling lives.
The main distinction that we need to make in this conversation that our methods for gaining these experiences might be more or less effective.
Why are most of our strategies for finding and ultimately experiencing these universal qualities not working?
Because many of us settle for temporary pleasure and spend so much time avoiding discomfort that we never get around to actually watching these deep seeded desires blossom…
Yes, these qualities that we are all hoping to experience are very much like little seeds. Their potential is unlimited, but it takes nurture to get us from where we are to where we want to be.
When we are constantly pursuing pleasure we can get addicted to the method (food, sex, television and so on) and find ourselves in a cycle of attachment.
This is a problem because this experience comes from “outside” of us and will literately lead to pain if we feel that we can not fulfill these desires.
There is also usually a diminishing return with the fulfillment of these pleasure. Whether it’s food, money, drugs watching Tv etc..every time we have the experience of “getting high” it does not have the same level of satisfaction as it did the first time.
Needless to say, we realize that this means of experiencing happiness is not sustainable.
What is sustainable and will give you positive returns overtime?
Become more self aware and nurture yourself.
When you become more aware of yourself you can then realize many of the things that are not serving you.
From there you can bring compassion into your approach and move in the direction of your heart. Nurture and loving yourself you will give you long lasting joy, inspiration and fulfillment.
Because you are the common dominator. You are always there, so you will bring that joyful presence that you have cultivated inside of you into whatever you do.
This creates profound freedom. This means that you will not be dependent on external things for your happiness. This does not mean that you will completely stop or never go back to some of the things that bring you pleasure now. But it does mean that you will no longer experience them from the same place of attachment. You will experience them from a place of deep peace, knowing all the while that your life will be just as beautiful with or without them.
So here is a list of methods that I have found to be effective in nurturing those internal seeds.
1. Take time each day to reflect.
It is important to take a personal inventory of whats going on inside each day. Doing this gives us the chance to hear what we need on a deep level and from there we can take the actions necessary to continue to be in and expand our present state of joy.
These reflective activities could include:
Meditation (my personal favorite)
Or anything else that really puts you in a state of introspection.
The key is to allow this activity to create more silence in your mind so you can hear what is going on inside.
2. Surround yourself with inspiring people.
It is important to make sure the community that you are involved in really reflects and inspires who you are. This is not always easy for many of us. Many of us have potentially lived in the same place for a long time and gone through many internal shifts along the way. These long term bonds can make it difficult to explore relationships that are not familiar.
The people in your life can often times be our greatest source of support and comfort or our greatest source of challenge.
Now this does not mean you should just drop all the people you love just because they have not grown in exactly the same direction as you. No.
But it is an invitation to become more aware of the nature of your relationships and begin to start incorporating people that really inspire you to be a better person.
3. Eliminate negative self talk.
Sometimes the things we say to ourselves are more critical than our worst enemies. Many of the things we say stem from fears and from the lack of truly knowing ourselves.
So what can you do?
Catch yourself when you are saying something overly critical or judgmental about yourself and smile:) Take a deep breath and smile at the absurdity of this approach with playfulness.
Instead, remember that you are here to learn and grow and affirm something that expresses you nurturing yourself.
“I will do better next time” or “It’s great to see how much I am learning”
It is important to see that the context of our lives can be met with love. Even when we catch ourselves not being nice to ourselves, that we can meet that self hatred with love too.
4. Be Good To your body.
Your body is the home of your spirit. When you are feeling good in your body, naturally things in your life are more beautiful. Take time to do activities that will have you feeling strong, flexible and in balance.
Yoga, Running, Swimming, Playing Sports, going to the gym are a few amazing approaches to accomplishing this.
We also need to make sure that everything we put in our mouths is really an offering to our bodies.
This is a way of saying thank you to our bodies for being so resilient and honest and taking us on this human journey.
In conclusion, nurture your personal growth. Just like a tree, all things in nature are here to grow, we are no different. There are so many things we can do that will nurture our personal growth. Here are a fewI would love to offer.
Find mentorship. Mentors are great because they have seen so many things before us. They also hold the energetic key and embodiment of what we want. Be sure to only work with a mentor that truly inspires you and has qualities that you admire.
Read books that inspire you. So many books have been written by great people. Inside of these books there are keys to their wisdom that can unlock many doors of potential inside of you.
Challenge yourself and pursue your fears. A wise man said ”If you are ever curious of what path to take in life, pursue your fears.” Stretch beyond your comfort zone in the direction of your hearts calling. Our fears are great teachers. They teach us where we have opportunities for great growth. They teach us where we are not fully experiencing the full flow of life. I invite you to take inventory of the things that you are scared of and why and make a commitment to moving toward overcoming these fears.
I love you all.