The emotional complexities of self-love

I was talking with a close friend yesterday and our deep and meaningful conversation led to discussing people’s behaviour when they are full of insecurities or inadequacies.

I have to say the wisdom and grace from my friend was so admirable.

I see a lot of people around me struggle with self-love. Male and female, young and old – it’s no different. The difference with the young is that they have not matured enough, or have not gone through enough hardship, to learn some tough lessons and wisdom to discern. The older crowd are generally stuck in their victim story and are resistant to change.

To create a meaningful life, one must take courage and risk some comfort.

Self-love does not come from your external affirmations. You should not get validated from other people telling you how good you are, or how beautiful or gorgeous you are, or how successful you are! These are all flattering and very superficial compliments. It’s not the flesh that is seeking love, it’s the heart.

If I am really honest, I have learned my self-love from all the hardship and rejections in my life. Trust me, the past two decades have not been a picnic in the park. It’s been really tough and rough in some spots.

I have been rejected in business – multiple – multiple times, I have been rejected in friendships that I thought were valuable to me, I have been rejected and cruelly dumped in meaningful romantic relationships.

Maybe there are some of you who can relate to some of my story, and ask ‘how does one keep going when the going is tough?’

Well, firstly you need to take time to process and heal from all the pain that you or someone else has caused. Take responsibility for the things you did to create your miserable story.

Secondly, you need to realise that certain treatments are not OK. Gossip, lies and dishonesty are wrong, and you don’t deserve to be treated with such dishonour.

Thirdly, you need to set boundaries, and let people know what behaviours are and are not acceptable. People need to earn your trust. When they enter into your life, they should see what you represent and that it should be a privilege to be part of your life. You deserve that, we all do. There is a saying ‘Don’t throw your pearls to the pigs’, and that is exactly the value you need to place on yourself. Set up those boundaries and stick with them. Don’t be so casual with your belief system.

And lastly, don’t get seduced by a corrupt selfish world or people that lure you into believing that you are weak, deficient, powerless, imperfect and inadequate.
Look at your heart and see how beautiful it is. Choose people in your life who deserve to love you the way you were created to be loved. Unconditional and nurturing love that will help you grow and develop into an amazing, honourable and honest human being.

I love this:

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonour others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.”

Choose and practice all these qualities and you will learn that loving yourself first makes you ready to love another or other people around you.