I Love ME to Love You better.

 ”You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.”  - Buddha

 Self Love is one of the core beliefs taught by Buddhism. Love yourself, then extend that love to others.  One must be capable of loving oneself before becoming an example for others and before being able to offer unselfish love to others. 

 

According to this belief, love and compassion for all living beings starts by self-love. Furthermore, love is a learned experience, therefore it can be taught , perfected and strengthened. 

How important this is for parents to know and understand… As a mother, this hits home. Self-love first to teach my children to love.  There is hope; we can all learn to love.

My first thought: less guilt for thinking of me. It is easy to say I Love ME but it takes a lot of practice to feel comfortable with the statement. I am sure a lot of parents, especially mothers, can relate to this.  Knowing and accepting that I need to love me first to love my children better, makes me feel so much better about needing and wanting to take care of me.  Same applies to adult relationships: I love me to love you better.

When you write in your journal about the things you would like to do for yourself, take a moment to go deeper into how you feel about these wishes. Is there an underlying reluctance to actually do these things? Is there fear or guilt or any negative feeling that prevents you from experiencing self-love? Ask yourself the question and see what comes out.

For the longest time I lived to make everyone around me happy. I helped others achieve their goals, I sacrificed my needs to make myself available to others, I worked extra hard to meet every one’s needs while seldom meeting my own. I thought making others happy would make me happy. I was looking for this outside source of happiness to find my own happiness.

I felt empty, despaired and tired. I had no energy, I had no love left for what I was doing, no love for myself nor for others. I didn’t feel like I was getting any love from them either. I wasn’t happy. What I needed was to start back from scratch; I had to rediscover self-love in its purest form, without fear or guilt attached. I had to put myself on the top of my own priority list.

It does take practice and a lot of effort for someone who is not used to this. I have also had to fight traditional views that judged my behaviour as unacceptable for a woman/mother. I stood my ground. The bottom line was this: if I am not happy, my children won’t be happy. If I fall apart, who will take care of my kids?

These questions may be very thought provoking. Let them be. They saved me from insanity and gave me a whole new outlook on life. I found my way to happiness, I started my journey!

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  5. I Love ME; I take care of ME.

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