Valentine’s day tomorrow had me thinking about love in general,
and love between people,
but most pointedly, about the love we have (or don’t) for ourselves.
It occurred to me – with a gut-clench wallop of recognition – that if an auditioning-beau broke his word to me as often as I do to myself, I simply wouldn’t put up with him.
See, I’ve had a pattern of breaking my promises to myself.
It manifests in the yo-yo dieting,
in the incompleted craft projects,
in the journals of brilliant ideas as yet unrealized.
In the procrastination.
In the pervasive, simmering regret of wilted hopes.
90 day plans, New Moon resolutions, course schedules, diet programs, you name it, I’ve promised myself to do it,
and I’ve consistently allowed myself to dilettante + flake on my agreements.
As though there are no consequences.
As though I don’t matter.
The really pointy-sharp barb in this pattern,
is that I don’t behave this way to/for other people.
(epic sarcasm dripping)
For other people, I’ll move the earth to fulfill even the most inconsequential promise.
For my clients, I show up. 1000%. Every.Single.Time.
For my kids + my husband + my parents + my friends …
I’m Ms Reliable. Always there. Doing what I said I would. And then some.
But I don’t do that for ME!!!
And this morning, it hit home just how much that pattern is costing me in terms of satisfaction + dollars + energy.
To treat myself in a way I wouldn’t-and-don’t allow others to,
is, quite simply, unacceptable.
When you look at it rationally, the longest relationship we’ll ever have is with our-Self.
From first-breath to last, we are always with ourselves.
How we feel about ourselves dictates what we do + what we say + what we think. Therefore, it dictates our very experience of life.
In short, self-love dictates what our reality will be.
“When I was around 18, I looked in the mirror and said,
‘You’re either going to love yourself or hate yourself.’
And I decided to love myself.
That changed a lot of things.”
~ Queen Latifah
So, this Valentine’s day, whether you’re in a relationship or not, perhaps you’d like to consider whether you’re your own most delicious lover, your most ardent admirer, your #1 fan.
Cast a cool, assessing eye over your self-love-life,
and GENTLY consider the following …
Is there enough romancing?
Do you buy yourself flowers, or run decadent baths, or eat by candlelight?
Do you lavish your skin with luscious lotions + spritz your favorite fragrance behind your ears before bed?
Do you dress as though you have a secret assignation?
Do you wear your sexy undies because you know you’ll catch a glimpse of it in the mirror tonight?
Is there enough sweet talk?
Do you say nice things to yourself?
Do you smile into your own reflection with an admiring wink?
Do you grin with delight at your quirks + declare, “I love that about me!” ?
Are you a one-woman cheering squad when you succeed,
and warmly gentle when you don’t?
Do you stand up for yourself the way a lover would?
When the world gets blustery + bullying, are you your own knight-in-shining-armour?
Are you needy/pass-agg/a wuss?
Think of the things that irritates the crap out of you about past/present lovers …
like when you ask, “Should we have Italian or Chinese for dinner?”
and the answer is, “oh, whatever you feel like.” (*gag) …
and check in to see if you don’t do that to yourself in devious-and-subconscious ways.
(A potent clue is if you constantly ask for other people’s opinions about what you should do with your diet/business/wardrobe/blog. It’s one thing to do proper research. It’s quite another to constantly outsource your decisions.)
Believe me when I tell you that to individuate your-self out in this way – to look at your SELF as a would-be lover –
can be a cold-shower wake up call about the path you’re on.
AND it can set the stage for the most thrilling seduction of every nuance + aspect of your life.
Not just how you feel,
but how you do what you do
and how you ARE in your world.
As my darling Oscar Wilde said,
“To love oneself is the beginning of a life-long romance.”
Happy Self-Valentine’s Day, dahlinks.
This could get all kinds of delicious.
PS This musing started off as a Facebook post.
It would be fab if you joined the conversation over there. <3