What is our major problem? I am not only talking about our problems with our body, but also the mind and spirit. I am even talking about the problems of our society and other societies as well. Maybe even the world! If you listen to people talk, you will often hear them say things like, “I am so mad at myself,” or another unkind remark.
I remember years ago I was talking to a patient about her three-year-old. She said she saw her daughter standing in front of the mirror with one leg outstretched and she said, “I love my legs.” We thought it was adorable.
I also remember a young woman in her later 20’s in my office. She was drop dead gorgeous, model material if she had the desire. And in talking about her complaints, she admitted she didn’t like her legs because she thought they were too fat.
It doesn’t do one bit of good to say, “oh but you are gorgeous.” It doesn’t matter that much what another person thinks about you, but it matters tremendously what you think about yourself. Do you love yourself? Do you love yourself even if you think a body part isn’t perfect or you did something you wished you hadn’t?
We have to ask, what happens to that young girl who grows up and becomes the young woman in her later 20’s that causes her to be self-loathing? We need to learn to see things objectively, but most of the time, I find, that people have blinders to their own beauty, and I am not just talking about physical beauty, but inner beauty as well.
When our inner beauty is not seen by those people who are most important to us (think parents and family) and reflected back to us so we can see it ourselves when we are children, then it becomes really hard for people to see and feel and know their own beauty.
Loving yourself doesn’t mean that you don’t make mistakes. As long as we are alive, we will make mistakes in life. It is all part of being human. The question is, “can you love yourself even when you make mistakes?”
Be as kind to yourself as you would be to a three-year- old in your life. They make mistakes, but that makes them even more precious. This is why so many people have said to me, “my grandmother saved my life.” Grandparents get to “re-do” parenting and, of course, having become older and wiser, our second try is far better than the first time. No matter how great of a parent you are, you will likely be a better grandparent. Experience is a great teacher. And age allows maturity.
Often, it is easy for the grandparent to love the child in a way that the child soaks it in. The grandparent isn’t overly critical. The grandparent is tickled with the antics of the child. Grandparents have more patience and time and don’t make a child feel they are wrong. I guess, when it comes down to it, a grandparent often makes the child feel loved in a special way. I call that way, “unconditional.”
Of course, I’ve had people tell me their grandparents were not fun or loving. So it is a generalization that I use to simply make a point. Often grandparents enjoy the child and allow the child to be a child. The child feels accepted and loved. Loved without doing anything to deserve it, but loved because they are alive and exist in their lives. Loved because they are beautiful, inside and out.
And now the question is: can you love and accept yourself as a work in progress? This month notice your inner dialogue and see if you catch yourself saying something unkind to yourself. This is the first step to change your pattern to loving yourself!! You have heard the saying, “charity starts at home.” Well, love starts at home too. You must love yourself before you can love someone else.
As my Granny often said, “we love them, warts and all!” And the same goes for self-love. Love yourself, warts and all.
If this has helped you see the beauty in yourself, please leave a comment that might help others see the beauty in themselves!