Manifestation is the act of using your thoughts, beliefs and mindset to influence your experience. To manifest is to focus on your desire which is attracted by what you think, say, and do. Which is exactly the prescription for self-love because you can not just think and say self-love you must also be an active practice of creating more love in your life.
I’ve heard over and over again that you just need to love yourself first. And honestly, I'm not a violent person but I wanted to throat punch a few of those people because it's really easy to tell someone without giving them the how-to.
After years of fighting it, denying it, and then searching for it, I was beginning to believe that self-love was an elusive dream somewhere in the realm of unicorns and magic pixie fairy dust.
But at last, when I stopped trying to search for self-love as external validation it suddenly appeared and it left me standing in the mirror are grateful for my body, my being, and my spirit.
I became detached with my all-consuming obsession with the quest for the perfect body and connected to the body that I have - the body staring back at me in the mirror. When you live in the present it brings you into a space of knowing, appreciating, and connectedness.
Self-love is not just retail therapy, bubble baths, and spa days nor is self-love a destination that you aim for on a roadmap (and as someone who likes crystal clear direction struggled with this). For all the love in your life, self-love is choosing you when it's uncomfortable, it's choosing discomfort over resentment, and it's putting your core needs first.
I love to use this airplane analogy when you get on an airplane one of the first things that the flight attendants do is go through the in case of an emergency spiel and in the event of an emergency the oxygen masks are released from that compartment above you. You are then instructed to place your own oxygen mask on first BEFORE helping anyone else, including children and the elderly. You first! Got it?
When you love yourself first and take care of your own needs you are better able to show up for everyone else in your life. Self-love is speaking your truth. When we swallow our feelings, thoughts and desires we are muting our own Inner Light. I believe each of us was placed on this planet for a reason and when you speak your truth you speak your purpose.
Self-love is taking care of your body - eating foods that energize you to make you feel good and that support your well-being both physically and mentally, exercising frequently, and resting when you need it.
Self-love is choosing happiness which is a lesson that I only learned very recently. Happiness is a choice. Each day when you wake up you can choose how you feel, how you perceive the world, and how you perceive yourself. So choose to be happy. I know what you're thinking it's not that easy I get it. I've struggled with severe depression and with numbing anxiety so I understand how hard that is but I also know that I can and do make a conscious choice to be happy each day.
Self-love is being grateful for every inch of your miraculous body because no matter how you view it right now it is in fact miraculous. What your body is capable of is nothing short of a miracle. Offer gratitude for all that it does for you and if you haven't yet go back and read how to improve your body image.
Self-love is expressing compassion for yourself or your shortcomings, for when you make a mistake, or when you fail miserably. What you do in those moments is probably the most crucial of all because when you berate yourself into self-love practices that's not self-love. Choose to be kind, choose to speak to yourself as you would to a dear loved one with compassion, understanding, and empathy. Use gentle encouragement for yourself, maybe there's a mantra that you can implement for those moments that you repeat over and over to remind yourself to be kind and loving. My shaman Amber Kupina used to tell me all the time gentle, gentle, gentle.
Self-love is also softening expectations that you've placed on yourself and forgive your imperfections. Get honest with yourself about what you can and cannot give energy to anymore. Allow yourself to make mistakes, to dream big, and take chances.
Self-love is to have the courage to take a good long hard look in the mirror and take responsibility for all of Who You Are. Who are you really? How do you show up in the world? How do you treat yourself, your spouse, your children, your parents, your siblings, your coworker, your Barista, your grocery store clerk, your mechanic? What energy are you admitting as you go throughout your day?
Self-love is trusting your intuition. I have ignored my intuition. I've ignored the signs that I've asked for. I've ignored the giant red flares that were in front of my face because I didn't want to accept it. But listening to your body and your intuition is, in fact, a self-love practice because when you listen and act from the guidance you're acting from a place of self-love.
Self-love is honouring your love language. According to Gary Chapman, there are five love languages in which a person receives and gives love - touch, quality time, acts of service, words of affirmations, and gifts. Mine is definitely quality-time and knowing that I know that spending time with myself is the greatest way for me to honour my own love language. I'm an introvert so I definitely need time to recharge my own battery. And honestly, for the longest time, this scared me because I was afraid of what I would find. What I did find though was a deep sense of love for me, all of me.
I'm practicing gratitude on the regular my gratitude practice was and is probably one of the most influential things that I did to begin manifesting self-love. You cannot be grateful and hateful at the same time, so choose the former. Think about a time you were grateful for your partner, your family, your job, your home, your friend, your body. What are the feelings you conjured up? I'm going to assume that one of them was love.
Our world is filtered through our mindset - what we believe about ourselves and how we perceive ourselves is how we show up in the world. Our perceptions of ourselves are often based on what we think we should look like and it is this perception that is the huge driving force against self-love. To manifest self-love is to start living a life that is not a reflection of others but a reflection of your authentic self. To embody self-love is to act like the kind of person who already feels loved, completely.
When you close your eyes what does it feel like to be loved? Is there a sensation in your body? A feeling? A flutter? A temperature? A colour? Can you connect to that feeling of love? Go there every single day! Take 5 minutes each day and just let yourself feel the love. Let love express itself in your body become one with love.
This is what it takes to manifest self-love. But there's a catch-22 with manifestation because you must fundamentally believe in your ability to love yourself, you must believe that you deserve to be loved and that you are worthy of love.
And you, my friend, are infinitely worthy!
What to do next...
Any questions? Leave me a comment below.
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