Self-love (sĕlf′lŭv′) n. The instinct or desire to promote one’s own well-being; regard for or love of one’s self.
Self-love is often mistaken for selfishness. This is not true. It has been proven time and again, if you cannot love yourself, you will never be capable of loving another. After all, if we do not value ourselves, how can we ever honestly honor someone else?
Self-love is different from being egocentric or narcissist. It means to care for oneself, set boundaries for oneself, being truthful to self, trusting and forgiving oneself. Self-love requires tremendous courage. Have the strength to be who you are in the world that is desperately trying to change you and in return the world will love you.
Self-love is something women have struggled with historically on a gender level. Why is it wrong for a mother to seek “me” time, why is it wrong for a wife to pamper herself, why should women be taken on a guilt trip for caring for themselves?
Only a happy mom can share her love and happiness with her children, a happy wife can keep the family together. Look in the mirror and say “I love me.” Take time to do things that fill you up. Yes, self-love is important.
Many people are deluded by the selfish and in-vain explanation of self-love and find it impossible to come around to loving themselves. They often believe love is finite and by loving themselves they will have lesser love to give. How can it be? Love means care, acceptance and kindness. You can only love, help and inspire others if you can love thyself.
Four reasons why we should love ourselves:
“Love yourself and everything falls into line.” ~ Lucille Ball
1. When you love yourself, you attract love. You tell the universe you are worthy and deserving of positive outcomes and love in life. You put less pressure on others to make you feel loved.
2. When you love yourself you fill yourself with joy. You are of better service, with all the love and joy to have: after all no one can be served from an empty vessel.
3. When you love yourself you are compassionate and gentle to yourself. You eliminate negative self-talk, you are not critical of self. And you radiate the same kindness, compassion and approval to others
4. When you love yourself you are motivated to take care of your body, eat healthier, exercise, think positive thoughts, and emotionally release what doesn’t serve you anymore.
If you are still not convinced, think of it this way—would you love somebody who thinks they are unworthy of being loved? Who is demanding of your love? Unkind? Critical? Disapproving? Unforgiving?
Author: Ruchika Behal
Editor: Catherine Monkman
Photo: Eva Blue/Flickr