Lucille Ball once famously said, “Love yourself first and everything else falls into line.”
There are many ways you can love all of who you are. But if you have been taught that consistent self-love is narcissistic and too much self-care is selfish, loving who you are may not feel comfortable.
In part-3 of the “Finding True Love” series, I am going to share with you five simple and positively life-altering processes for reframing your perception of self-love.
First, we are going to take a brief look at what is perhaps the biggest set of obstacles to loving yourself, which are setting and honoring healthy boundaries.
For healthy boundaries to be cultivated and honored, you must be willing to love yourself enough to not accept it is normal or ok to have your boundaries violated.
Far from being selfish or ego-driven, self-love and self-care are key indicators of how well you set and honor healthy boundaries in your relationship with yourself and others. Unfortunately, many women in our generation were not shown how to love themselves, let alone supported when it came to establishing healthy boundaries.
Many women over the age of 60 were raised and educated during an era where people pleasing was seen as a primary form of giving and receiving love. To take time for self-care was perceived as a luxury, not a necessity.
Therefore, it was easy to unconsciously adopt unhealthy thoughts about yourself, and in doing so, accept your boundaries being violated as normal.
Even if you were raised in a loving family, if you were bullied at school or shamed at social gatherings growing up, this can have a huge effect on how you gauge your sense of self-worth and value later in life.
So, how do you let go of unhealthy beliefs about self-love if you were not taught how to love yourself enough to have healthy boundaries?
To answer that question, here are five processes to reframe your perception about self-love.
An intellectual understanding of what self-love is, without embodying it in your daily life, will not open the inner door to your personal freedom.
Practicing self-love regularly, through daily habits of self-care, diminishes the effects of all the seven myths we covered in part-one of this series. It also silences the unwanted influence of people’s negative opinions, including your inner critic who may say it is irresponsible and selfish to look after your own well-being.
This process is more than just saying positive affirmations. It’s about careful discernment between what your inner critic is saying to you about self-love and what your true, authentic voice is saying.
Once you are aware of the distinct difference between these voices, you can begin diminishing the power and influence your inner critic has over your emotional well-being. You can also turn up the volume on the voice of your authentic, true self.
This is about interrupting the toxicity of limiting beliefs and unhealthy behaviors surrounding self-love when you’re alone and around others.
Observing both allows you to witness the unique ways your inner critic covertly distorts and twists your sense of worthiness for love. It is also where unhealthy boundaries can be seen and more easily addressed and dissolved.
For many people, this process begins with journaling positive affirmations, and speaking them out loud. But don’t stop there.
Taking consistent, proactive measures to embrace your uniqueness and apply your positive affirmations in your physical world is where new thoughts and behaviors take off like a rocket! This is because you are creating new neural pathways without resistance. Plus, your actions are grounded in your physical reality, ensuring what you are adopting as new beliefs and behaviors stick.
There comes a point when getting older is no longer socially perceived as a good thing, which can have a direct impact on your sense of self-worth, especially about being loved and valued. Therefore, when you reinterpret your beliefs about aging, you reframe your perception about how worthy you are to be loved – no matter your age!
Self-love requires more than just affirmations or even happy thoughts. It takes a conscious and consistent approach to observing and letting go of the not-so-pleasant thoughts and emotions as they show up.
Because of this, these five processes are designed to instill regular, daily acts of self-love and self-care. This is achieved by setting new, healthy boundaries in the relationship you have with your own self and with others, which creates a clear path to reunite with your true self.
As much as you seek to find true love in the outer world, particularly with other people, only one relationship can make you love yourself unconditionally. That relationship is the one you choose to develop with yourself.
What is your personal experiences in your daily habits of self-love and self-care? Do you love yourself? Did you start out that way or did you learn self-love later in life? Do you think your self-love is dependent on your boundaries?
Tags Finding Happiness