Do You Really Love Yourself? 5 Ways To Tell You If You Are Receiving the Self-Love You Deserve
Few of us would deny that self-love is a good idea. Could you imagine
telling a child, “Hey you, don’t love yourself, that’s selfish.”
Of course not. And chances are that if asked, “Do you love
yourself?” most people would say, “Yes, of course I do,” when
in fact the majority of us don’t really have a clue what self-love
actually means, or requires.
This lack of understanding about self-love isn’t surprising when you
consider that the current definition of self-love on dictionary.com
is ‘conceit, vanity and narcissism’ (no kidding!) Or when you
look at the pressures today’s woman faces, equal to men in many
ways, knowing she can do anything, but exhausted by her attempts to
do and be everything.
As an independent, self-confident women with tons of self-esteem, I sure
thought I had self-love, until I found myself at the age of 30 almost
marrying Mr. Wrong because I was afraid to be alone. Add on how much
I hated my cellulite and called myself fat (I am a size 8), beat
myself up for everything that I didn’t accomplish (I have my MBA
from one of the best business schools in the country), and drove
myself to exhaustion because ‘resting’ made me feel guilty, and I
had to stop and ask myself, “While I might have self-esteem, I am
surely missing something.” And that something was self-love.
My definition of self-love is quite different than the dictionary.com
version – and it boils down to this: Do you have unconditional love
and respect for yourself? A big question for sure. Self-love can feel
so intangible and vast to attain, but there is a path, there are
milestones – I’ve experienced at least 5 of them myself over the
past 10 years. I call these milestones the gates of self-love. And
you can use them to see where you have load of self love and where
In honor of this February 13th, the international day of self love, I’ve created The Self Love Test to give you insight on where you are ready to grow more self love. My self-love dare to you is that on Feb 13th, you choose one gate of self-love and make that the gate you focus on this year. You can learn more about each gate as well as the vows and
hows of self-love in the free self-love kit at www.ChooseSelfLove.com For now, take this test and as you read about each gate, ask yourself, have I already passed through to the other side, or am I
still climbing my way up to new levels of self-love here? Then ask yourself, “If I was to choose one area of self-love to grow in 2011, what would that be?” Dare to choose self-love.
The 5 Gates of Self-Love
Gate #1: I know who I am and what I want from this life.
This is the first factor to loving yourself, because if you don’t know who
you are, how can you love that person? Most of us go through life
doing what we think we are supposed to do and be, influenced by the
society around us. These experiences and people form our beliefs,
attitudes, and perceptions, until the day we realize that how we
really feel and think is different. While you will continue to learn
about yourself forever, self-love requires that a. You make a choice to live self-aware, b. You know you want from your life and you are not settling for less
than your heart and soul desire. c. You know who you are NOT, as well as who you are. d. You have healed your emotional gapers.
Gate #2: All of my relationships support me to be my best me and to live
the life I want, or I don’t have them. This can be one of the hardest milestones, because it means setting boundaries and being honest about your relationships. It requires honoring yourself SO much that you only have relationships in your
life – friendships, romantic partners, even relatives – that give respect, trust, unconditional love and truth. You love and honor yourself so deeply that all relationships in your life make your life better, help you reach your dreams and be a better you. This doesn’t
mean that the relationships are perfect, void of difficulty, or that you are absolved of giving the same respect you desire. What it does require is that you choose me before we in every relationship – let go of ones that don’t serve you, change ones that have the potential to grow, and open up to let new ones come in.
Gate #3: My body is my temple. I recently took part in a survey in which 78% of women admitted that the thing they were hardest on themselves about was their body. Not a shocker, but sad. Let’s face it, we are all guilty of body hate and what I call ‘body slavery’ – treating your body like a drive-me-til-I-drop workhorse, ignoring her needs completely. For me like I said, it was my cellulite. “Every time I sat down wearing
shorts it screamed at me, ‘Here I am! Look at me!’ After being tortured by it for years, I did a self-love practice of loving my cellulite. Every day, I told it, “I love you.” I meditated daily,
visualizing my cellulite pockets being filled up with love. Today, I can’t tell you if I have any less of it, but I do know that I very rarely notice it. And when I do, while I may not like my cellulite, I can love it. Its appearance now motivates me to walk more, instead of
hating my body for having it. Self-love requires that when you notice something about your body you don’t like you choose love vs hate. Self-love also means shifting your relationship to your body from her being in servitude to you to you being grateful for this beautiful temple you get to inhabit while on this earth.
Gate #4: I am nice to myself. We are harder on ourselves than anyone else could ever be. In fact, if the outside world could hear the thoughts inside your head, they
would call the authorities. Every woman has an Inner Mean Girl inside of her spewing out rants like, “You are not enough. You should be able to get more done in a day. You
don’t belong.” She compares your worst to everyone else’s best. Some call her the
inner critic, but she is way more personal than that! As part of your self-love journey, your job is to love this Inner Mean Girl to death, so that instead of hurting you with her self-sabotaging thoughts and habits, she can help you see how beautiful, powerful and whole you are right now, just because you are you.
Gate #5: I can and do take care of me without the guilt or burden. It’s like we have a DNA pattern that says take care of everyone else before you take care of you, and if we try to buck that pattern by actually taking care of ourselves, we can’t help but feel guilty or like we should be doing something more productive. This self-love milestone means being able to say, “Yes… I make self care a must, not a nice to do… I take care of me without feeling guilt… I meditate, relax, or take a walk and see it as productive time vs
wasting time. I am aware of what I need, I am make sure I receive it.
Love is a practice. Start by practicing on you.
Choose Self-Love this February 13th.
Visit www.madlyinlovewithme.com to get your free Self-Love Kit
About Christine Arylo
A new kind of self-love expert, Christine Arylo takes a fresh approach to redefining and teaching self-love. Popular author of Choosing ME before WE, Arylo is also the founder of Madly in Love with ME™, an international self-love movement, and Inner Mean Girl Reform School, a place where women come to learn how to stop being so hard on themselves. Visit her at www.daretoliveyou.com.