x(Acknowledgement + Appreciation + Admiration + Adoration)
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.)
- Mothering Myself- Mandy at Living Peacefully with Children discusses how her children have been a catalyst for treating herself better.
- The Habit of Intentional Rest - Jennifer Hoffman, of Every Breath I Take, shares how she "puts her own oxygen mask on first" with her habit of intentional rest.
- Replenishing by Connecting - Gwynn Raimondi found the way to self care through connection to those who matter most: herself, her husband, her daughter.
- Overcoming Body Image For The Sake Of Our Children - Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mamatakes a hard look at how her own body image can positively or negatively affect her daughter and why that scares her more than anything!
- I Resented my Pregnant Body - Mercedes at Project Procrastinot blogs about body image and the pettiness she felt when she couldn't accept the physical changes of pregnancy.
- Staying Sane & Taking Care of Myself - Jana Falls at Jananas discusses how she, as an introvert mama, has made time to take care of herself.
- Depression and Self-Image - At Authentic Parenting, Laura confesses how much her recent depression has distorted her self-image and how she struggles to overcome this.
- mummy loves ... - Helen at Zen Mummy shares a post about re-finding the person behind the mummy.
- Can my inner critics stop me from participating in a self-love blog carnival?- Tat fromMum in search almost didn't get to write for this carnival. Until she stopped to ask herself why she was pulling out.
- Self-Love, A Formula and Pictogram With Ramblings - Susan May of Together Walkinggives her formula for Self Love and some of the ramblings from her mind on what Self Love means. Her journey of Self Love began about a year ago when she first heard the "official" term, Self Love.