Welcome to the May 2013 Authentic Parenting Blog Carnival: Self Love This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Authentic Parenting Blog Carnival hosted by Authentic Parenting and Living Peacefully with Children. This month our participants have written about their thoughts concerning self-love. We hope you enjoy this month's posts and consider joining us next month when we share about Babywearing.
x(Acknowledgement + Appreciation + Admiration + Adoration)
It's one of those days. Gerry won't go to sleep, I'm tired, and if I'm not really careful I could have an army of discouraging thoughts battering my mind. One that crossed my mind moments ago, "The last thing I want to write about right now is Self Love." But actually this is the PERFECT time to write about it - when I'm not feeling at the top of my game and doubts are lingering in the shadows of my mind, just waiting to pounce on me when I am down. Because these are the moments that we need to love ourselves the MOST - because of this fundamental truth - we are human and worthy of love. If I told one of my closest loved ones what I was feeling now they would offer me love - so that is what I should offer to myself.
True tests of Self Love emerge NOT when times are easy - it's effortless to love when the sun is shining, we are healthy and making good choices, and we feel connected to our loved ones. No, true Self Love shows itself when we make mistakes, big or small, or feel less than our best. Overdue library books, raised voices, frustration, hurting loved ones' feelings, forgetting something important - these are tests of Self Love.
How we treat ourselves in these difficult times is the basis for how we treat others. The words we use in our self-talk are the same words we use in outward conversations (or in our heads!) about others. If criticism is our main mode of talking to and about our self, it will be the same way we handle our partners and children. If *we* are never good enough for ourselves - others won't be good enough for us either.
In fact I would argue that the antithesis of Self Love is PERFECTIONISM. There is no room for perfectionism when we love ourselves or others - because we are not perfect, not a single one of us. There are always ways we can improve. True Self Love can begin to flourish when we throw off the yoke of perfectionism and embrace our humanity. A fundamental way to do this is by practicing forgiveness .
Do you beat yourself up when you mistake or do you let it go - knowing that everyone blunders in life sometimes? Do you forgive yourself and move on the best way you know how, or are you stuck in shame?
It takes practice but if you start loving yourself unconditionally through your personal highs and lows - it will transform your life and relationships because you will offer this same grace to others - and the effect will spread outwards from you as you influence those in your world.
I really believe that if we desire change in our world, if we seek peace for all, if we want our children to experience a better future than our current state, then treating our children with love and kindness is the most concrete action we can take to promote change.
But the basis for for this concrete action is even more personal - it is Self Love. I am more convinced of this every day:
Self Love is THE basic building block for creating a better life, future, and world.
Check out the Mindful Parenting eBundle Sale for a great group of resources for parents in the modern busy world. Meeting our needs is a basic way to love ourselves and sometimes it feels impossible. There are great tools in this bundle for self-care.
Visit Living Peacefully with Children and Authentic Parenting to find out how you can participate in next month'sAuthentic Parenting Blog Carnival, when we discuss babywearing! Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants: (This list will be live and updated by afternoon June 1 with all the carnival links.)
Wife, mom, information and peace seeker.