What is self love? without understanding what it means to you how can how can you fully benefit from the invaluable lessons it can teach? The idea of ‘loving yourself’ was something I looked at negatively as I was growing up. It went against my very nature and upbringing of what I thought a person should be. I thought ‘self love’ was arrogant, selfish and vain. However, subconsciously I have always been an advocate of self love for everyone that I have ever interacted with (without even realising it!)
I was told as a child to take no notice of my extraordinarily hairy body and rather than embrace it, accept that it wasn’t going to change because it was ‘natural’. This was something told by my unnaturally hairy father who kindly passed on the strong genetics of never feeling the biting cold of London winters. I think my parents were trying to say love yourself as you are… however this came across negatively for me and I saw it as – you are different and there’s nothing you can do about it. (Brown girl hairy problems that shall be explored later on). But maybe somehow it stuck with me, and was an important lesson even if the execution was all wrong. Having children made me reflect on this on a deeper level, I want my children to love themselves and grow to their full potential because I understand how having a negative perspective about myself and my self-doubts stopped me from being fully me.
I find myself reminding my children to be proud of everything they do. Every piece of classwork or homework, every beautiful drawing… as long as they are proud of it knowing they did their best thats all I expect from them. Because I know how self critical we can become towards ourselves and how detrimental that can be. The long lasting impacts of which are hard to undo and reverse.
I find myself telling them time and time again
” Work on making the person you are beautiful and the rest will sort itself out”
and thats lesson I am trying to teach them and reinforce with myself!
The start of my own Self Love journey stemmed from the realisation that I never applied what I preached to myself. The voice in my head was not as kind-hearted to me as it was to others. I was in a dark place. I felt worthless, broken, and lost. I suddenly felt immensely sad that I was not being kind to myself, putting myself first or concentrating on my growth. I did not love myself, was not considerate or compassionate towards myself. My journey started when I finally put my hands up and took full responsibility for the part I had to played, for the wounds I had given myself and allowed others to give to me. I had to heal and love is the greatest of healers especially when it comes from within.
Self love is putting yourself first, allowing yourself to make mistakes and being that kind voice that picks you back up when you fall to help you grow. Self love can start at any point in your life, at any age, any situation or circumstance. It is a journey that is continuous and forever evolving. I hope that through my own journey of self love, you can love yourself in a way that best suits you and results in you being everything you ever need.
I would love to hear the lessons you have learnt from your own journey of self love or what you hope to discover!
respect. love. heal always
Brown Girl N.