On Self Love
"The greatest love, of all, is easy to achieve, Learning to love yourself, it is the greatest love of all."
The greatest love, of all, is easy to achieve,
Learning to love yourself, it is the greatest love of all."
I'll let you in on a part of my life. Not so long ago, I was on a man spree. Not physically, in case you think your girl over here is a thot, but mentally and emotionally, I was moving from one guy to another. And what was funny about these guys, was the fact that none of them was really my type. There was so much that was off about each of them but I chose to ignore it. I was sick and tired of being single and I knew I could make things work. Despite the fact that they were all either emotionally unavailable or downright misogynistic.
On one particular day, after arguing with one of these guys, I decided I needed to meet my friend and talk to her about all this. I was over it anyways, I was done trying to get with emotionally unavailable people.
After ranting and raving, she looked me dead in the eyes and said, "Do you know how bitter you are?"
"I'm not bitter. I'm so over Harry." (Not his real name)
"No, you're not. You think you are because there's Tom. The idea of Tom makes you feel like you've moved on. But you haven't."
She was right, and as soon as I got home I realized how right she was. I looked at my most recent tweets, my status posts, the things I was saying...
That day made me realize a few things. I was entertaining these guys not because I was tired of being single, (honestly, that was not the reason. I mean, I don't even know what to do with a boyfriend. How many times do you feed him? Do you kiss him and leave him in a corner?) but because I didn't love myself enough to decide that they weren't good for me and stick by my decision. I wanted the train wreck, I wanted the ones I could fix because I didn't feel like I deserved a person who was okay who didn't need fixing.
And thus began the journey of self-love.
The truth is, we all have struggled with loving ourselves. And the struggle isn't only when you look in the mirror and don't like what you see. It's also when you allow yourself to be with people who don't deserve you, or when you choose to compromise for someone who wouldn't compromise for you, or even when you keep people you should really cut off, because you're afraid you'll either offend them or you'll never get other friends (which is all bollocks, by the way, I think you're loveable in every sense of the word).
In my short and ongoing journey I've learnt that if one does not love themselves, it will be very hard for others to love them. I've learnt that if one doesn't enjoy their own company, no one will. If one doesn't forgive and let go, one will live in bitterness.
The key to loving oneself, and being in tune with oneself is spending time alone. No social media, no "men are trash" tweets to fuel your bitterness, no useless conversations to keep you from using your time more constructively, and most of all, no Instagram model posts to make you feel fat and unloved (although if you're on the heavy side and it's getting risky you should do something about it. But only because you want to).
Here's the beauty of spending time with yourself: as you do things you love or just normal activities, you notice habits, trends, you notice how you react to certain things. If you're brave enough, you confront. You ask yourself why you're impatient. You find out how you can change that. You become better.
In loving yourself, you constantly unlock new levels of yourself. Gain traits you didn't think you'd ever achieve. Let go of habits you thought were woven into your DNA.
But what about the toxic people?
You send a broadcast message to tell them they're all trash and you're better than them and you wish they die alone in a retirement home. The creepy part is I might not be kidding.
When you love yourself, you're conscious of who's around you. You're aware of what you have to offer, and you expect the same from those around you. You have meaningful conversations. And just like that, you lose a ton of people. The ones who hate that you're changing. The ones who dislike the fact that you can no longer talk about people behind their backs. The ones who only used you for what you could do for them. And in the process, you gain a tribe of supportive people who help you and speak life into you and want to see you flourish.
Sounds dope, right?
It is. You just have to decide you want that for yourself and take that hiatus.
I'm not there yet, I'm still texting Tom and Harry hoping they'll get around to being good men, but I'm also letting go of that person who did that thing that I didn't like back when I was thirteen. I'm realizing how much more I can offer the world if I just love me.
So if you will excuse me, I'll go sit with myself and try to figure out why I can't wait for someone without cursing their mother for bringing them forth.
Here's to a new beginning, of self-love.