The Art of Self-Love
Why Loving Yourself Matters
28 May 2018 by Quinn Taplin
How important is loving yourself? Well, let’s take a giant leap back in time when we were little kids and had little awareness of social constructs and even our own ego. From the moment you woke up to the moment you fell asleep, life was a celebration of joy and curiosity. Then time ticked, we grew older; life became more serious and then came adulthood, relationships, careers, money, and lifelong responsibilities. From the moment you are born and through your years of experience into young adulthood is the real test of the seed planted for self-love. If you’ve learned the art of self-love within this time, then life is more enjoyable for you.
Many of us are taught to put others before us, to be thoughtful, kind, selfless and considerate, but rarely we are taught to love ourselves first. While all these qualities are wonderful, they shouldn’t come from a place of low self-worth. Loving yourself is not being selfish or greedy, it is an ongoing practice and lifelong lesson of continuously living your true expression of radical self-acceptance, self-empowerment, self-expression and self-respect. You’d be surprised when you put your own needs first rather than doing what you perceive others to assume from you. Think about what makes you happy and pursue it! Your path in life won’t always be super clear so knowing what makes you feel good will always enrich your soul and lift your spirit.
“If you aren’t good at loving yourself, you will have a difficult time loving anyone, since you’ll resent the time and energy you give another person that you aren’t even giving to yourself.”
-Barbara De Angelis
Defining your boundaries, choosing the right friends, engaging in social activities, acknowledging your imperfections and finding your go to place for self-care is vital for a self-upgrade. As adults we have configured our brains to be checklists. If we don’t check something off on the list that “moves us forward” then wasn’t it just a waste of time? Wrong. This is a societal construct wired into our self completely detrimental to our thinking in that ‘doing’ is good, and undoing is bad. Reality check! We actually need to be undoing most of what we have learned to actually reconnect back to ourselves. It’s like we are reversing the process of birth but instead we are now working on the outside to go in. Extending to much doing can leave us love deficient for ourselves. As Mark Twain once said “A man cannot be comfortable without his own approval”. The message will come back repeatedly until one day it falls into place. You really have to love yourself FIRST before you can get anything done in this world.
“When you adopt the viewpoint that there is nothing that exists that is not part of you, that there is no one who exists who is not part of you, that any judgment you make is self-judgment, that any criticism you level is self-criticism, you will wisely extend to yourself an unconditional love that will be the light of the world.”
– Harry Palmer
Extending yourself too much outside your bubble will leave you lacking within. There is a fine line of attending to our social checklist while tending to our self without falling second to others. Self-realization is just this. Loving yourself is to know yourself, and to know yourself is to understand the full potential of your true power. Life will constantly throw you challenges, so it is how you consciously stay connected to keep the doors open from where it all began; when life was a celebration of joy and curiosity.