One day, what feels like a long time ago, I decided to start doing things that feel good. I started writing, I started being honest about my boundaries, I started treating myself better, and I’ve never felt more alive.
Before this I thought we were all supposed to hate everything all the time. Hate your job, hate your body, hate your relationship. Act as if living was the worst thing that ever happened to you and the end couldn’t come fast enough. This is what every one else did. This was what I thought I was supposed to do too.
Two things changed for me. The first was coming face to face with my mortality. Nothing serious happened, I just realized time was marching on and I was stuck being miserable and angry. I realized that one day I wouldn’t get to live anymore. I wouldn’t have the privilege of being a part of the world anymore. When I realized that, not cherishing my time here felt like a crime against the beauty of the universe.
The other realization came when it was pointed out to me that I was a hypocrite. I was telling others what they should do and how they should feel, all the whole doing the opposite. I hated when I would tell people not to put themselves down, or not to be so hard on themselves, and they would reply “, “but you do it all the time”. Sheesh! I wanted to lift up my loved ones and here they were using my self hate as an excuse for their own.
How could I give advice that I wasn’t taking myself?
So I changed. I started to see myself as just as deserving of love and care as every other human being in the world. I don’t know why but this felt like a radical notion. I felt like an anarchist, making war on self hate and that taking for granted of precious life.
At first I was almost ashamed! The fact that I kinda liked myself as a person became my own dirty little secret. It felt as crazy as cliff diving or climbing Mount Everest. It felt like coming to life.
I know it sounds corny, but self-love has turned not only into a way of life for me, but a something I promote with passion. I’m not ashamed anymore. I have learned that people are resistant to it at first, but once they see someone loving themselves out in the open, and with not a care for what others think about it, they find the strength to do it too. They realize that self-love what all they needed all along.
So now I tell people, love yourself first, then teach others to do the same. You may find that sky diving and kissing strangers isn’t what you needed after all, or maybe you will find out that these are things you wanted to do but never could. Not until you loved yourself first anyway.
Every thing should begin with self-love.
People seem to think embracing life means to jump off cliffs and kiss strangers. Maybe it’s just slowly learning to love yourself.