Have you ever noticed that when life becomes difficult, it can be hard to love ourselves? And not only that, self-hate can try to creep in and take the place of self-love?
Why is that? Where does self-love go? Why do we abandon ourselves?
I think the reason for this is because there are 2 kinds of self-love and we are confusing one for the other. You see, there is real self-love which comes from our spirit and its love is unconditional. And then there is ego-based self-love which comes from our ego and is a conditional love; which means we only love ourselves when life is going our way. Ego-based self-love is more about pleasing the ego than it is about love.
Why are there 2 kinds of self-love? It’s because we are made up of both spirit and ego and while both serve a purpose, when it comes to love, its best to follow the voice of our spirit rather than the voice of our ego.
The ego is about survival, power and appearances. Its voice is critical and judgmental and always wants more right now AND wants it to be easy. If it detects any flaws or difficulties in our lives or in the appearances of our lives, its love disapears. This is because the ego is riddled with self-doubt and it has no patience or tolerance, so the minute it detects any short comings, it abandons us and invites self-hate to take its place.
So the solution is to consciously shift away from ego-based, conditional self-love and move towards spirit-based, unconditional self-love whenever we detect self-hate trying to creep in. The key word is “consciously” and that means it will take conscious effort to pay attention to our self-talk and catch our negative thinking. We will need to listen and notice how we talk to ourselves in the midst of our mind’s continuous flow of thinking. Which isn’t easy because the continuously thinking mind can be like a strong river current that easily carries us away.
When we catch ourselves being self-critical, we need to say, “Stop! I am being critical and judgmental with myself. I no longer want to discourage myself, scare myself or depress myself. I want to change the way I talk to myself and come from a place of love. I want to be a friend to myself rather than my worst enemy. And that means that my words need to be encouraging, kind, loyal and patient.”
What would that sound like to speak to ourselves in this way? Can you think or write down a sample sentence for each?
- What would an encouraging statement to yourself sound like?
- What would a kind statement to yourself sound like?
- What would a loyal statement to yourself sound like?
- What would a patient statement to yourself sound like?
With conscious effort, we can learn to be there for ourselves when facing the difficult times in life instead of abandoning ourselves. It just takes practice.
I will continue to share Lessons in Unconditional Self-Love with you. It is my hope that my words inspire you to continue, to renew, or to begin your commitment to always love yourself with unconditional love. I will post Lessons in Unconditional Self-Love on a regular basis 2 to 4 times a month. And I hope you will join me and share with me your thoughts and experiences.