A series “Elevated Chat” of writings, articles, insights and musings from Dr. Michael G Millett
and the archives of Elevated Therapy International
Learn to Love Yourself
It is true that the more you understand and accept yourself, the more you acknowledge your good traits as well as having compassion for the bad ones.
This allows you to come to like yourself and grow to love yourself. Loving yourself is at the heart of wellbeing, joy, self-empowerment, and your ability to generate and establish and enjoy the kind of life you want.
Firstly, it is important for you to know that you do have good aspects, which are attractive to others which they like and admire. To acknowledge this initially helps make a more balanced picture of yourself.
You may wish to make two lists titles over the course of a week, “Things I like about myself” and “Things I dislike about myself”. Look at the lists everyday, and add to them over the week, and look back from day to day and note if you agree with all you have written. Sometimes, you will tend to write down more qualities you dislike about yourself as your self-esteem changes with situations and because of emotions. When it is `one of those days` where things don’t seem to flow as well as you’d like – what you write down may not be an accurate guide to how you really feel about yourself. Modify the lists during the week until they show a more balanced appraisal of yourself.
At the end of the week, read out the list of the qualities you like about yourself and imagine that they represented someone else. Would you like this person? If so, praise and admire yourself for these pleasing qualities.
Then turn to your list titled: “Things I dislike about myself”. Look at it carefully and decide which negative qualities you would most like to change about yourself. Choose five of them, and make another list, in order of priority titled: “Things I want to change”. When writing these down, give it some thought, and focus, and be as specific as you can. You need to be specific about what you want to change. The more specific you can be, allows you to take proper action with what you dislike about yourself coupled with a more balanced view of yourself.
The way you look reveals much about how you feel about yourself. Beauty and being handsome doesn’t come into it – the way you project yourself through body language and what you wear is the important point here. Shy people can be noticed quite quickly in the way they stand and hold their heads, avoiding eye contact which often gives the message: “Ignore me, I am worthless. I have nothing to offer, and I am not important”.
We then tend to take on board other people’s valuation of themselves, and these shy people are then usually regarded as their own valuation suggests.
Their low opinion of themselves is accepted.
Every relationship you have with someone else exactly mirrors one or more aspects of the relationship you have with yourself. When you feel happy in your own skin, you will more and more feel happy with your real self which attracts people and circumstances that mirror your positive beliefs and feelings about yourself as in the Law of Attraction.
Consider your least favourite physical feature that perhaps you feel conscious about and are trying to avoid bringing attention to it. Perhaps it’s your nose or your weight or your hair or lack of it !
Now imagine your least favourite feature from the point of view of someone who has a major disfiguring condition. This establishes a sense of perspective or proportion. From now on, every negative characteristic you come up with, find something you can be positive about. From now on, don’t focus on a negative characteristic without first deciding on a positive feature of yourself that you can feel particularly favourable about.
Once you start to feel more confident about yourself, you will radiate this positive feeling out, and others will start to see and experience you in a more positive way, too.
The way you feel about yourself physically and your self-confidence are very connected. People react positively to others that are stylish, have their hair nice and are well-groomed which you can improve straight away to feel more confident and start to raise your self-esteem.
Challenging Negative Self Talk
It is also important to often check in with yourself through the day and notice how you are really feeling. If it is negative, you’ll very often find that this negativity is unrealistic or self-defeating.
Challenge this negative feeling and very likely the negative self talk or internal voice that is going on too, and become aware of your thoughts. You will find that the greater part of this negative self talk or internal voice is inaccurate or exaggerated.
Ask yourself the following questions to see if it is rational which will help you determine other ways of thinking about your situation which may be more balanced and motivating, and goal-directed too, allowing you to be more pro-active about addressing or solving it.
1. Testing Reality
- What is the evidence for and against my thinking ?
- Are my thoughts really true, or are they just my take on the situation ?
- Am I leaping to perceived negative outcomes ?
- How can I find out if my thoughts are actually facts ?
2. Are there different possibilities ?
- What are the alternative ways that I could picture or experience this situation ?
- What else could this mean ?
- If I was being positive about this, what would I believe ?
3. Putting it all in perspective
- Am I exaggerating the situation ?
- What is the worst case scenario that could happen here ?
- What is the best case scenario that could happen here ?
- What is most likely to happen ?
- What is the most positive thing about this situation ?
- Is there something I can learn from this situation ?
- In a few years time, will it be important ?
You must remind yourself that you deserve to feel valued, so be kinder to yourself and good to yourself by doing as many things you can to nurture yourself on all levels – physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.
Learn to have more respect, love and compassion for yourself by treating yourself as well as you would treat a friend. Determine what evokes positive feelings in you. Yoga ? Joining a gym ?
Or learning a new skill.
Go roller skating or dancing or trampolining.
Listen to inspiring music.
Allow yourself time to “do nothing”.
Decide to do at least one activity each day that is exclusively for YOU.
All this will help you develop self-nurturance – a healthy unconditional love and appreciation of self which your heart has so longed for !!
Find the love you seek, by first finding the love within yourself. Learn to rest in that place within you that is your true home. ~ Sri Sri Ravi Shankar