February brings Valentine’s Day, the holiday celebrating love. More topical than romantic love though, for our purpose, is self love. But self love can seem like an abstract far-away concept. Or maybe even a chore. An attitude you know you’re “supposed to have”, something you “should do”, or a way you’re “supposed to be”.
Self acceptance may be simpler (although takes no less practice), and when cultivated, it can give you a lot of peace. How much of your mental energy, your thoughts, are unaccepting of who you are and what you do? (Or do not do?)
With regards to skin picking and other body-focused repetitive behaviors, see if it is possible to accept that you do these behaviors rather than hating or blaming yourself. Acceptance does not mean giving in, being weak or giving up. Acceptance is something you do in the moment, for the moment. You accept where you really are, in that moment, instead of resisting the moment. Only with acceptance rather than resistance can we make any choice. A moment without resistance is a moment of infinite potential. So, instead of being caught in a cycle of helplessness and self-loathing, when we notice ourselves doing our habitual behavior without meeting it with a string of negative thoughts, then we have the freedom of that empty moment to decide to do something else, or to decide to take some positive action. Self acceptance isn’t less power; it’s more.
It’s important to recognize that self acceptance and self love are not natural to us. They need to be practiced again and again if we want them to be present, blessing us in our lives.
As for self love, how about practicing giving yourself a “Valentine” everyday this month? Just stand in front of the mirror (at a safe distance, assuming you have an uncovered mirror to look at), say your name and say, “I love you.” That’s how Louise Hay, queen of affirmations, founder of Hay House publishing, and the author of You Can Heal Your Life and other books, starts every day. If it works for her, it can work for you, and you’ll never know until you try it.
Got any thoughts on self love and self acceptance that you want to share with the other blog readers? Please submit a comment below.
Love and support,
p.s. Have you downloaded my free “Freedom Kit”? It comes with a written and audio report, “Why you pick your skin and how to finally stop,” a video on “how to stop skin picking urges in two minutes flat,” and my “Live Free” newsletter in your inbox each month. Learn more here.