Self Help Newsletter
"Learning to Love Yourself"
I’ve been on quite an intense journey the past couple months: attending back-to-back personal growth conferences, meeting lots of new people, and just generally getting in touch with what I want my future to look like. I turned thirty this year, so it’s time to *finally* stop asking myself what I want to be when I grow up and officially grow up! Lucky for me “thirty is the new twenty,” so I’ve had more time to figure out what I want for myself than previous generations.
One of the lessons that has been revealed to me over the past couple months is how important it is to truly love yourself and consistently practice the art of self-love. It’s become a theme in several of my recent blog posts and I’ve been gravitating towards books and articles that speak about self-love. I’m pretty sure that anyone reading this newsletter knows the importance of loving yourself, but sometimes it can be so tricky to figure out exactly what that means! How exactly do we go about loving ourselves?
Some things I’ve learned recently (and I’m sure there will be several more articles on this in the coming months so stay tuned!) are the importance of setting clear boundaries and showing up in the world as who you truly are.
Setting boundaries and maintaining them is important for several reasons, but in terms of self-love it is especially crucial. Without setting boundaries, we can find ourselves doing things that don’t resonate with our personal values, spending time with people who don’t have our best interests at heart, and just plain living a life that doesn’t make us happy. I’ve always been pretty good at setting boundaries to avoid being mistreated, but I realized recently that I wasn’t super great at setting boundaries regarding who I am.
Instead of staying grounded in who I really am and the vision I have for my life, I was allowing other people to determine which path my website would take and how I would spend my time. I was giving my power away to others and allowing them to make decisions concerning my life, rather than making the decisions myself and sticking to them. I was even allowing other people’s preferences to dictate how I would show up in the world. Not anymore!
As far as I’m concerned, showing up in the world as who you really are is of the utmost importance. We’ve all been raised with various “masks” and “personas” that we show to the outside world, in order to gain approval from others, fit into society, and sometimes just plain survive. Taking off the masks, however, and showing the world who we truly are is an absolute necessity if we are ever to find true happiness. Not only will you feel more at peace within yourself, but you'll be amazed at all the opportunities that seem to come out of the blue to help enforce who you really are!
I’ve lived in Washington, DC for about six years now and have always been convinced that I would have to move to the west coast to find people with similar interests as me, i.e. personal and spiritual growth. However, the minute I started showing up in the world as a person committed to personal and spiritual growth, rather than hiding that side of myself, people who are into the same things as me have been coming out of the woodwork! I’m just amazed at the opportunities that are springing up right in my own neighborhood, and it looks like I won’t have to move out to the west coast anytime soon. Don’t be surprised if the same thing happens to you.
Above all, learning to love yourself will lead you to a place where you make peace with yourself, faults and all. There are surely things you’d like to change about yourself or improve, but when you learn to truly love and accept yourself, those parts of yourself will either change on their own or you'll realize that those places in you aren't so bad after all. In fact, sometimes those qualities in ourselves that we view as weaknesses or faults can actually turn into our biggest strengths, once we change our perspective and learn to love them!
All of our various qualities and characteristics, both those we consider “positive” and “negative,” are here to teach us something about life and about ourselves. Once we accept that fact, it becomes much easier to love ourselves and really see the magnificence that we all are!
For more self-love resources, be sure to check out the self-love page.