Fall totally, crazy in love . . . with you.
You are your own true Valentine. Love yourself like you love others.
Ah, Valentine’s. The annual celebration of love is upon us. This can be a polarizing romantic holiday or a reminder of love lost. Whether you’re in a relationship, or not, whether you put stake in this tradition, or not, I would like to use this celebration as a time to reflect on the most important relationship in your life. The question I’d like to invite you to ponder is, are you totally, crazy in love with you?
We all spend a great deal of time and energy nurturing relationships with others. Friends, family, colleagues, and pets require a lot of attention. It’s true, all relationships take work. When you’re dealing with complex emotions, thoughts and life experiences, it’s important to devote energy to making sure your loved ones feel cared for through it all. We all spend so much time looking outward that it can be easy to forget about putting that same energy into caring for yourself.
If you live a life rich with love you may notice that having love only come from others isn’t enough. It’s certainly meaningful and necessary but it does not replace the value of self love. Without self love, you may not be able to recognize the love being offered to you and you may not be able to offer it to others. Self love is at the root of all outward love.
[Tweet “Self love is at the root of all outward love.”]
We don’t often think about having to tend to the relationship with ourselves like we do with others. But why wouldn’t it be just as important? It doesn’t take much to become distant from ourselves, to become too busy, to be disrespectful in times of stress, to ignore the signs that we need to be nurturing ourselves.
A good relationship is filled with uplifting qualities. It should inspire you, support you and push you to do things you didn’t think were possible. There should be laughter, trust and displays of affection. In times of conflict, there should be true resolution. All of these things are cultivated through time spent together.
Try for a moment to come out of your body, to see yourself as a dear friend or a beloved sibling. Try to drop all judgement or assumptions and just consider these questions.
Who inspires you? What do they do that touches a part of your core and motivates you? Do you carry these qualities in yourself? What characteristics do you embody that inspire you?
When a friend tells you about something they’re working towards, how do you react? Are you a supporter and encourager? If they display self doubt, do you remind them of their incredible qualities and try to guide them out of it?
Now, when you think about your own ambitions or reflect on your behavior, do you display that same degree of support to yourself? Are you an encourager? Or, do you say things to yourself that you would never dream of saying to a loved one?
When limitations in your beliefs appear, do you allow them to stop you or do you face your fears? Do you push yourself to do things that you believed weren’t possible?
Sense of humor
What brings a smile across your face? What lights you up from the inside? Do you invite these things into your life? Are you able to look back on tough situations with lightness? Can you give yourself the freedom to love yourself just as you are?
Can you rely on yourself to do what’s right? Do you show to yourself that you can be trusted?
Display of affection
How do you display your love for others? Do you vocalize your affection and appreciation? Do you do the same for yourself? When was the last time you told yourself “I love you”?
In times of trial, how do you approach the stress of the situation? Do you really listen to what’s being said? Do you come from a place of wanting resolution or do you try to push it away without giving it attention? Do you come from a place of compassion or from aggression? Are you trying to compromise or win?
Do you prioritize time to spend with just yourself? We are always changing, do you take the time to check in with yourself to really get to know who you are?
As with all relationships, it can be easy to focus on what’s not right about it rather than what is. Feeling gratitude for the positive aspects of the relationship can be enough to overshadow many of the trivial annoyances we notice. So I invite you to make a list of 8 things you absolutely, totally, crazily love about YOU. Hang this list in a place where you can always see it. If you’re willing to share, I’d love to know what your list is so feel free to write it in the comments.