“You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.”
You have been given the most amazing gift. A genie in a bottle could not have offered anything as rare and wonderful as the treasure you have right now in your possession. The trouble is you may not even recognize your good fortune. You may be looking at the cracked and broken cement under your feet and not the stars glowing high above your head. Are you aware of who you are? And are you giving the Divinely-created consciousness that is YOU the love, respect, and understanding you deserve?
The gift of life, your life, is a miracle. Just consider where you came from. You are a spark off the infinite block of unconditional love and eternal good. Even if your path to the present moment has been a rocky one, no matter how many missteps you are sure you’ve taken, you always have the power to heal. Wherever you’ve been and whatever you’ve suffered, you can learn to wake up the capacity for loving and forgiving yourself that you’ll need to recover.
Why is it so challenging to find the self-love and forgiveness needed for well-being and true appreciation of the gift of life? As a spiritual teacher and energy healer, I see many people who are their own harshest critics, their own self-saboteurs. Could you be one of them? Maybe you’ve been labeling yourself a “failure” in various aspects of your life such as romance, parenting, career, friendship. Maybe you blame yourself for things you perceive as shortcomings: being unhealthy, overweight, unmotivated, unintelligent, even unworthy of love.
Instead of nurturing yourself with love and self-care, are you berating yourself for not measuring up to impossible standards? A lack of self-esteem comes from the mistaken belief of “I’m not enough.” It’s a common misperception that so many of my students hold at some point in their lives, often for many years at a time. It takes a lot of work to break out of the stranglehold this lie can take on your life and heart.
As I struggled to heal from an upbringing that almost destroyed my ability to love and care for myself, I was blessed to discover energy healing. This healing modality came into my life when I needed a reconnection to the Divine gift of unconditional love. I came face to face with the miraculous and realized that I had to develop a new capacity to love and forgive myself and others. I learned to explore and take care of my heart chakra and stay conscious about remaining open to loving and being loved.
The better you know yourself the easier it will be to strengthen your self-love, self-acceptance, and your power to forgive. Here are some questions to ask yourself as you sit quietly with an open mind and heart:
1. How am I holding love back?
See if you can think of any ways in which you are keeping your heart closed, perhaps to avoid pain or to punish yourself or someone else. How would it feel if you simply removed those roadblocks and began to love?
2. Could I be more loving to myself and others?
Consider any ways in which you might begin to give love more freely. Could you be kinder, gentler, more tolerant, more accepting? Are there some role models whose behavior you admire and could emulate? Fake it till you make it!
3. How could I love myself just as I am?
Think of someone who isn’t perfect but lives happy and fearless just the same. How do they achieve that self-acceptance? What would self-acceptance look like in your life? There may be some areas where you are already almost there.
4. Have I isolated myself from others?
Think about all the connections you have with other people. Are there ways in which you feel set apart and unable to bridge the gap? Are there ways you could grow your feelings of empathy and connection?
5. Do I feel that I am enough now?
What would you need to do to be enough? What does “enough” really mean? What if there were no such measurement in your awareness and you were free to love yourself, forgive yourself, and thrive?
Learning to love yourself and forgive are the first steps to healing, thus removing any barriers to your happiness and wellbeing. Love has the power to heal all the wounds you may have suffered—if it is allowed to flow both within and without. As Louise Hay says, “There is only one thing that heals every problem, and that is: to know how to love yourself.” Awakening the love in your own heart can heal you.