Most women know that self-love is a cornerstone of a healthy, happy, and rewarding life. A woman who genuinely loves herself chooses relationships, careers, and habits that reflect how she feels about herself. She enjoys her own company and people are drawn to her vibrancy. The self-loving woman’s life is what every woman wants and deserves.
So, why aren’t all women feeling self-love?
Your self-loving or lack of it started before you had any conscious choice-making ability. The deck was stacked against you growing up knowing and having a grasp of your worth.
From the moment a girl is born, people comment on her appearance and make pronouncements on how she looks compared to other girls. If she happens to match the current social standard of beauty, she will develop pride in—and may even come to rely on— her looks, while feeling intellectually inferior if no one praises her mind.
If she doesn’t fit her community’s standards of beauty or intellect, she quickly receives the clear message that she isn’t as desirable as other girls.
Even before adolescence, the assault intensifies, as the deluge of unrestrained media messages fills her environment. They tell her she needs more make-up, shinier hair, bigger breasts, a smaller bottom, the newest fashions, and loads of soaps, shampoos, and perfumes just to be considered adequate.
Often our parents or other influential people in our lives unknowingly or, sometimes knowingly, add to the assault with criticism, doubt, shame, blame, and worse.
It’s easy to understand how so many us of spend decades—or even our lifetime—feeling insecure in some or all areas of life, or feel unworthy of our own unconditional love.
The very worst part is that we believe the malicious messages about ourselves and then divide within. When we are divided against ourselves and join in the criticism and measuring of our perceived inadequacies, every single aspect of life suffers.
It is so much harder to create your dreams and goals when a part of you is attacking you. It weakens you in ways that nothing else can.
Yet, when we understand the source of these negative feelings and harmful beliefs, we can use our intellect to see that none of it is true.
It’s like believing in the Wizard of Oz and then discovering that it’s just a troubled little guy sitting in a control room. Once you know who’s behind the curtain, you’ll never believe in the Wizard again. We can do that here.
Societal standards of beauty and right conduct are not based on truth. What’s considered beautiful today was unappealing at another time. What’s appropriate today was inappropriate at another time.
There’s no substance behind the societal standards. It’s just the media’s mass hypnotism designed to induce you to feel inadequate so you buy things to fix yourself.
To cultivate healthy self-love, you must wake up from this hypnotism. You must wake up to the wonder and magnificence of you. Your inherent value and worth is timeless and unaffected by the shifting standards and societal interpretations of beauty and value. This is the truth about you.
Many say that self-love is a state of being. You can induce this state of being by taking self-loving actions. Every few hours, or as often as possible, ask yourself: How can I love myself right now?
The answer may be to change your thinking, call someone who loves you, get a glass of water, stretch, eat a healthy meal, go for a walk, buy yourself flowers, take a beautiful bath, listen to music, write yourself a love note, or end a toxic relationship.
As you practice self-loving actions and see the undermining media messages around you for what they are (totally impersonal to you), you’ll sow the seeds of enduring self-love and this will remake your experience of life.