Love you

There is a very simple question I want to ask, simple yet challenging:  Do you love you?

If your immediate answer is a resounding ‘Yes’ then rejoice, for you are in the minority.  Sadly most people would answer, ‘maybe’, ‘sometimes’ or even ‘no’.  To love yourself is hard, its about looking yourself in the eye, warts and all and choosing to see the truth.  The hard truth that this is it, there is no one else, you are who you are, not who you keep trying to be.  Let’s face facts; there is no one else.  You entered this world alone and you will also leave it alone.  The quicker you accept your gracious body, personality and soul the sooner you will be able to start living with the gratitude, pride and delight you are entitled to enjoy on a daily basis. 

It’s not a luxury to love you, it’s a right.  You are uniquely special, there is no one else remotely like you that brings the same qualities to life.  This is easy to forget when external sources delight in your imperfections and therefore declare you ‘unlovable’.  Culprits include the negative messages from childhood, the media, social pressure and not to mention your own inner critic.  But loving you is not about perfection.  It’s about accepting who you are and loving that person.  It’s about treating yourself as you would your dearest friend.  Choosing a healthy relationship with yourself is the key to inner resilience, happiness, a healthy, positive mindset and an empowered life.  To not love you would diminish your life spark and deny the beautiful unique person whom you are meant to be.  And as Marianne Williamson wrote, "who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?  Actually, who are you NOT to be?"

If you want to secure a place for you in your heart, here’s how to ‘love you’ more: 

1.    Drop and Give Me Twenty! 
List twenty good things about you right now.  Either what you have done, what you appreciate in yourself, what you like about you.  No-one is listening so get those appreciation juices flowing and start cultivating some real kindness and compassion towards yourself. 

2.    Don’t put yourself down. 
Give up self berating.  Seriously, it’s a terrible habit to put yourself down in public or private.  No one likes to listen to another personbeat themselves up, plus it’s embarrassing! Just give yourself a break and be kind to you.  Speak well of yourself, accept a compliment and drop false modesty, again, it’s embarrassing. 

3.    Mirror, mirror on the wall. 
Sometimes it’s hard to look ourselves in the mirror and say those words ‘I love you’.  For something that sounds so silly, it sure can be challenging.  Start with the words ‘I’m learning to love me’.  Scan your body, that’s right, strip off your clothes and get face to face once and for all with all those little body gremlins which eat away at your self esteem.  Tell each part of your body what you like or love about it. E.g. I love my wrist for recovering from a fracture.  I love my ankles when I wear high heals. 

4.    Now who’s the fairest of them all? 
Look after yourself.  Loving yourself means immaculate personal grooming and presentation.  Smell delicious ,wear your best underwear, update your hair cut, buy modern clothes.  Your confidence and self respect will ooze attraction rather than neglect. Which would you rather?

5.    Go on a date! 
Take yourself on a date with your new best friend; YOU!  Choose somewhere that you love, your favourite café, restaurant, gallery, concert, movie and indulge in your own company.  Write it in your diary and set a reminder for each month.  Being comfortable with yourself and accepting who you are means you will never be alone again!

© Claire Hall & Authentic Empowerment.