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Learn to love yourself

Love is a wonderful thing, it is what each and every one of us craves and yet even when we are loved we don't always feel accepted.  So, perhaps the first thing is to learn how to love yourself, because only when you can love and accept yourself are you able to start accepting others.

You may ask, "how do I start"?

If you can love yourself then you will ignite a light within you that will be a beacon to attract like minded individuals towards and around you.  For instance, have you noticed that when you feel happy and joyful inside, the people around you reflect the very same?  You may ask, "how do you know this"?  Several years ago, when I was going through a difficult time in my life I was given a book by a friend called "The Power is Within You" by Louise L Hay.  Louise suggested that in order to love yourself you needed to say to yourself, in the mirror, every day, "I love and approve of myself".  At first it felt very strange and I felt quite silly.  I also wondered how long it would take to actually start working.  Well, it has taken several years and it has been quite a journey for me, as one of the first stumbling blocks I had to overcome was getting my head around what loving the self really meant. 

Loving the self is not about narcissm or constantly preening yourself in the mirror, it is about accepting yourself warts and all and that in itself can be a lifetime's work.  It is about being comfortable in your own skin and self acceptance is allowing yourself to 'fail' or make a mistake without beating yourself up about it.  Very often the choice we make in any given moment feels the right choice at that time.  However, if we do'nt get the outcome we anticipated that does not mean to say we have failed.  If you can learn from the experience and move on then there is less likelihood of you feeling a complete failure.

Acknowledge your feelings

Loving and accepting yourself is about acknowledging your true feelings and then accepting that it is o.k. to feel that way.  Anger, sadness, hurt and resentment are human emotions that we all find difficult to handle at times.  However, at such times as these, it is important to take some time out to nurture yourself, have a retreat, enjoy a relaxing massage, listen to some music, meditate, pray or just take a walk in nature.  Letting go of such emotions is not easy and yet when you harbour such emotions you only hurt yourself.

When you love and accept the self, you find it much easier to love and accept others.  You become less judgemental or critical of others and learn to accept that we do not all have the same values or belief systems.

Create a better world

Imagine what a wonderful world you can create by loving yourself  and when you reach that place it's amazing how many wonderful people you attract into your life.  Also, you start to feel more at peace with yourself, therefore this has a wonderful effect on the world around you.  So, when will you choose to start to love yourself?  Start today and even if you stumble on your journey of self acceptance, you can always pick yourself up, dust yourself down and start again tomorrow.

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