Most people erroneously believe that practicing self-love is an act of vanity and selfishness. This could not be further from the truth. The fact is that self-love does not translate to narcissism. Self love is not selfish at all.
What is Self Love?
Self-love simply means having high self-esteem and self-respect. You know your worth, and you do not allow others to discount you. You’re not going to be a martyr and let someone walk all over you.
Self-love is all about knowing yourself, treating yourself like you’d treat the love of your life, and not allowing anyone to breach the boundaries you’ve set for your life. If you are unable to love yourself honey how are you going to be able to love anyone else? And how can you expect someone to love you if you’re not capable of self-love?
You can be a selfless person without sacrificing your self-love. The truth is that you can only be truly selfless if you love yourself. Loving and caring for yourself results in you being your best self and your best self is the best gift you can give to anyone else.
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Why Self Love is Not Selfish
If you’ve made it your life’s goal to someday become free from all the things that are holding you back now, then you should start by loving yourself first. When you love yourself, you begin to value your opinion and thought processes. This improves your ability to rely on yourself and trust your own decisions. Someone else’s opinion of you and your choices suddenly become of less value, allowing you to forge ahead unencumbered by the weight of other people’s opinions.
With self-love, you don’t need to worry about what other people think of you. You’re not going to be hindered by other’s opinions. You know you’re doing the right thing, and nothing’s going to stop you. You’ll start experiencing freedom in ways you’ve never known before.
For instance, you can start pursuing your dreams without waiting for other people to agree with what you want to do. As long as you’re not putting anyone – including you – in harm’s way, then there’s really no reason why you shouldn’t proceed with your goals. Other people’s opinions, sought or unsought, will often lead to self-doubt and insecurities which sometimes sway your thought process causing you to rethink and mistrust your decisions.
Loving, believing, and trusting yourself allows you to block out these distractions and focus on your dreams and goals.
Now, just because you love yourself and you don’t let yourself be weighed down by others’ opinions doesn’t mean you’re going to stop listening to good advice. Good advice can sometimes be seen as interference if your decision-making is compromised, but your self-confidence allows you to investigate, discard and ignore negative inputs from your decision-making.
However, don’t let your pride get in the way. If you receive advice that’s going to help you reach your goals faster, then surely there’s no harm in applying that tip!
Once you allow your self-love to cross over into self-pride and pride gets in the way, you may start to believe that you’re better than everyone else. When this happens you have crossed the line from self-love into arrogance and cockiness. Arrogance and cockiness are unbecoming traits that cause boastfulness and disassociation from those we deem lower than ourselves. Judgment becomes skewed and we begin to value the artificial traits displayed by others we deem worthy of our association. True friends often get left behind and you become misguided, distant, and alone.
Remember, your journey to freedom may be self-initiated, but it doesn’t mean you’re not going to come across other people in your journey. People who are going to help you get from point A to point B. People who will make your journey a whole lot easier. These could be your family, friends, colleagues, even random strangers on the street!
When you become self-centered, no one’s going to want to help you. So, make sure you keep your self-love at a healthy level. Loving yourself way too much can be dangerous and will be detrimental to your success. In the end, it may even cost you the happiness and freedom you’ve worked so hard to achieve.
Here are a few steps to take you on your way to loving yourself :-
- Practice positive affirmations. speak kindly to yourself and celebrate your worth and achievements.
- Learn to say no. It’s ok to say no to a request especially if it’s not in your own self interest. Learning to say no eliminates the possibilities of people taking advantage of your kindness.
- Try to eliminate negative thought processes and replace them with positive thinking. Your thoughts and words are powerful.
- Nourish your body with healthy food.
- Exercise. It’s important to take care of your body as well as your mind.
- Surround yourself with positive people. Your company reflects who you are.
- Face your fears. Fear will cripple you and affect your ability to make decisions.
- Eliminate toxic people and situations from your life. Toxic people will drain you. Don’t be afraid to block and delete.
- You are your own unique person. Celebrate your uniqueness and avoid comparing yourself to other people. Remember you are uniquely special and uniquely you.
- Treat others with love and respect. It is important to treat people the way you would like to be treated.
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