Self-Love: Speak Love

As I’ve mentioned, I’ve been using the below meme to write a series about self-love. I’ve been on a journey to develop more love for myself for a period of about two years, with it really coming to an expedient head in July of this year.

One of the aspects I’ve worked on consideribly is to speak love to others but also to myself. I ain’t gonna lie…I can be very mean to myself and the level of self-criticism I offer myself on a regular basis would be considered abusive if I let others talk to me in that manner. So, it takes a lot of energy for me to play nice with myself. However, the benefits of this regular practice have started to kick in and I am realizing that for all my faults and flaws…I actually am an incredibly good human. Alas…I don’t knit blankets for homeless people…I’m not that talented…but I do my part to make the Universe a more friendly and safe place for others.

Speaking love to others has incredible benefits. Even if their respective love language isn’t words of affirmation, speaking kindly and with love to another person certainly isn’t going to hurt anything. I just ask that if you are speaking love…be authentic. Also, don’t invalidate a person’s own feelings by negating their insecurities, but rather, build upon those.

Here’s an example: I am very self conscious about my tummy. I had a baby at 41 and I’m never going to have the cheerleader-body I had in my 20’s again. Ever. My lover knows I’m sheepish about this part of my body so instead of saying something to negate it like “Oh stop it. You’re beautiful” (which would be somewhat invalidating) he says, instead, “I know you dislike this part of your body…but I am fascinated by it. Not only do I find it beautiful, I am in awe that you created a person with this part of your body. I adore it…and I adore you.” (Now…how on Earth can you not love a man like that??)

The thing is, the way in which he speaks love into me – especially in my moments of full on, somewhat obsessive self-criticism – is paying off. I’m finding myself less critical of my body – this area {squishes tummy} in particular. Even to the point that I can say “I created a human with this. How amazing is that?!?” now when I look in the mirror.

And speaking love to yourself is equally – if not MORE – important than speaking love to (into) others. Once I wrote a post about how I was going to stop asking myself “What the fuck is wrong with you?” and instead start asking “What the fuck is so incredibly awesome about you?” I made a list of the things that are awesome about me and I, from time to time, pull this out when my inner critic tries to tell me how awful, dark, and twisty I am.

Speaking love to myself has been one of the best practices I’ve adopted in this quest. I invite you to do the same. Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Make a list of the things you are good at doing
  • Make a list of the attributes you like most about yourself
  • Make a list of your strengths and talents
  • Make a list of the things your friends and family ask you to do because you are the best at it
  • Make a list of the things you do to show up for others when they need you
  • Make a list of the positive things you’ve accomplished in your life

Once you are done – and you can edit this from time to time (it is a dynamic list) – keep it close by and read it often. I have little post-its on my bathroom mirror (“Well hello there, Gorgeous! Those blue eyes of yours are amazing!”) and I keep my full list of awesome traits in my journal so I can pull it out when the inner mean girl is rearing her ugly head. I invite you to do the same.

As always…here’s your song which is a delightful little ditty by the Josh Abbot Band that I found by accident yesterday. I hope you enjoy it!!