We’ve all heard phrases such as “do unto others as you would have them do unto you” and “love others the way you love yourself”. Many times it’s interpreted in the context of being a kinder, more giving person, and learning how to treat others with empathy and respect.
While these are all wonderful (and necessary!) qualities to exhibit, often times I think a key word gets missed…yourself.
Do you aspire to love others the way you love yourself? If this is what we want to do, we must ask ourselves the question “How well am I loving myself?
Go ahead. Take a moment to reflect on this. How well are you loving yourself? Really?
Do you show grace to yourself when you make mistakes? Or do you punish yourself mentally?
Do you marvel at the way your body can move, stay healthy, bear children, and show off feats of strength? Or do you berate it for not meeting your own internal (or culture’s external) standards of beauty?
Do you encourage yourself and cheer yourself on when you’re up against a challenge? Do you picture yourself navigating challenges with dignity, grace, and poise? Or do you talk yourself down, using phrases like “I’m going to fail again”, “I’m never enough”, or “I’m always going to be like this”?
If you relate to the latter statements listed above, let me tell you, you’re not alone.
You may be thinking, “So what? Everyone thinks this way”. But there are real consequences to such negative self-talk.
The consequence is that we eventually leak.
All that judgment you have for yourself? Eventually it leaks onto others around you. Even if you don’t want it to.
So how do we go about loving ourselves better? One simple way is to start taking notice. How are you reacting to yourself and talking to yourself? Is it the way you would speak to your spouse, your best friend, your daughter? If not, then it’s time to begin replacing the self-loathing statements and start filling up on a little self-love.
Find some affirmations or truths you can use to replace the negativity. The more you think about the true, lovely, and excellent things, the more you’ll begin to live them out. Below are a few examples of affirmations, so you can start spreading the love-first to yourself, then to others.
“I am a strong, confident woman. I know how to be resourceful in tough situations.”
“I’ve overcome so much in my life, and I’m not stopping now.”
“My work matters because I bring my whole self-my talents, my presence, and my love-to it.”
“I forgive myself for making this mistake. I see where I went wrong and now I have more wisdom to move forward.”
“I am loved, cherished, and delighted in.”
What are some ways you show yourself love so you can better love others? Do you have any affirmations you live by?
Written by Brittni Paris.
Brittni is an alum of Colorado State University, where she mingled with the greats like Kellie Walters and Chrissy Chard. She currently resides in Hoosier Country, with her husband Hunter, worki
ng for Indiana University as an academic advisor to business students and donning the IU candy-cane striped pants. She spends her time taking ballet classes, listening to podcasts, biking around town, and hosting friends at her apartment and favorite coffee shops. Brittni earned a B.A. in Psychology, an M.S. in Health and Exercise Science, and is an ACSM Certified
Clinical Exercise Physiologist. She’s excited to pursue a career in wellness coaching, helping women see how great they are and how much good they can bring to the world.
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