I enjoy talking to women (and men!) practically every day about the importance of self-love. Learning to love myself absolutely saved my life.
Each of us is on our own journey to find the kindness, self-compassion, and self-forgiveness we need to love ourselves. And to accept ourselves as we are, no matter our shortcomings, mistakes, and flaws!
We are all at different places along the continuum of self-love. No matter where you are in your journey, I am here with you. I have traveled the path from self-loathing’s isolation and desperation to self-love’s empowerment and peacefulness.
Self-love is a practice that requires deep internal work. It’s a strategy, a way of life.
The process of learning to love ourselves can be challenging – even distressing – at times as we work through past programming, mistakes, and trauma.
If you have learned to love yourself, let me congratulate you (Bravo!) and challenge you.
My challenge to you is to take the next step beyond loving yourself.
I challenge you to love yourself MORE.
But Isn’t Loving Myself Enough?
Loving yourself MORE takes self-love to the next level.
It is a beautiful accomplishment when we learn to love ourselves. I am not diminishing this in any way. Through self-love, we can bring more joy, harmony, and success into our lives.
That said, we can love ourselves and STILL give away the best of ourselves – our attention, time, energy, money, power – by not putting our needs first.
– You can love yourself and still not know how to communicate what you need.
– You can love yourself and still feel compelled to give your last ounce of energy to your boss, your children, your spouse.
– You can love yourself and still agree to do favors for others that infringe upon your time – time that could be invested in yourself, your goals, and your dreams.
As I shared in my post, Self-Love & Self-Care: How They Are Different, Related & Why Both Are Essential, self-love is a way of living in which we recognize and honor the importance and primacy of the relationship we have with ourselves.
In my definition of self-love, the word I wish to call your attention to is PRIMACY.
We take self-love to the next level in recognizing and honoring the PRIMACY of the relationship we have with ourselves.
Primacy means that we put ourselves first in importance, rank, or order. I love me MORE.
Head of the line for you, my friends!
What Does It Mean To Love Myself MORE?
We can love ourselves, and still, we can cause ourselves harm because we do not love ourselves MORE.
What does it mean to love ourselves MORE?
We do for ourselves first – even before our partner, our kids, or our boss. We set and protect our boundaries to be sure we get what we need.
– We put our needs first.
– We invest in ourselves first.
– We fill our Power Containers first.
Before my words about loving ourselves MORE activate feelings of selfishness and guilt, let me ask you these questions.
- Do you leave on a long trip with your gas tank:
- Filled and ready for the journey, or
- On empty?
- Do you feel more confident and in control if:
- You have money in the bank to handle an emergency, or
- You have spent or given all your money to others?
- Is your day better (for you and those around you) when you are:
- Rested, calm, and organized, or
- Tired, hangry, and burned out?
Most of us would choose answer “A” to all these questions, right? It’s logical to fill up your tank before a trip, to have money in the bank for emergencies (and non-emergencies, too!), and to enjoy better days when we are rested, calm, and organized.
Can you see what loving ourselves MORE gives us? It fills us with positive energy and contentment and confidence. It gives us “A” answers!
- We put our needs first by filling our tanks for our daily journeys.
- We invest in ourselves first by making decisions about how we use our time, effort, and money for our happiness and peace of mind, and
- We practice self-care by doing daily activities that recharge and fill our Power Containers!
Loving ourselves MORE is critical, but it’s not easy.
Here are a few obstacles we must overcome to love ourselves MORE:
– We are programmed to self-sacrifice by putting everyone else’s needs before our own.
– We are not practiced in the art of making our comfort, feelings, and needs the top priority.
– We haven’t learned to subdue feelings of selfishness and guilt, two master saboteurs of self-love.
– We are handicapped by “Nice Girl” Syndrome in which we say “yes” when we want to say “no” and allow others to cross our boundaries, especially in how we spend our time and other resources.
It can feel uncomfortable to practice loving ourselves MORE. But the relationship we have with ourselves is the most important one we will ever have, and we must push through the discomfort we feel to honor the PRIMACY of this relationship.
Making sure our needs are met first empowers us and makes us more energetic, compassionate, tolerant, and generous. We are able to share our positivity and happiness with others because we are overflowing! This benefits us and everyone around us.
Let’s commit to learning how to love ourselves MORE.
In my book, “I Love Me More: How to Find Happiness and Success Through Self-Love”, I share many lessons in building a self-love practice, including examples of how I learned to love myself MORE.
Related: “I Love Me More Than I Love You,” a story about how we sometimes have to break our own hearts to do what is best for us.