Throughout this series I’ve learned a lot about self-care but if were to boil it down to two words I would have to say: self love.

I posted this quote by Brooke Castillo to Facebook the other day:

“The sensation of hunger is satisfied with fuel; the emotion of hunger is satisfied with self love.”

One of my friends commented: “Self love is a hard one, Amy.”

But why is self love so difficult?

Debbie Ford, author of The Dark Side of the Light Chasers shares this story:

When I was in a drug detox center a woman came in to give a lecture to a group of us. She began by telling us that she’d graduated from college at the top of her class. She had been married for thirteen years and had a fabulous relationship with her husband. She was a great mother and an excellent communicator. As she continued to tell us about all the things she did well, I thought, “What a conceited bitch. Who does she think she is? ”

Have you ever been afraid to let yourself shine? Do you “play small” so that others will feel better about themselves? Maybe you’re afraid other people will think you’re conceited. Or maybe you just believe that downplaying your greatness will make you a better person.

In her story, Debbie Ford goes on to say…

Then she stopped, looked each of us in the eye, and said, “I came here to talk to you about self-love. About the importance of acknowledging all your good qualities and being able to share them with the people in your life.” She explained that in order to love ourselves, we had to be willing to let our own light shine brightly. We had to acknowledge ourselves every day for all the good we’ve done. We had to take an inventory of our lives and applaud our accomplishments. And when we let our light shine, we’d demonstrate to others that it was okay for them to shine too.

Self love is the foundation of self care. After all, we take care of the things we love, right? And self love is being willing to stand up and, without shame or apology, celebrate your greatness or even your mediocre-ness or even (gasp) your flaws. Not in a boastful – I’m-just-saying-this-so-that-you-will-think-I’m-wonderful sort of way. It’s the willingness to forgive your mistakes, even laugh at them. It’s the ability to love yourself because of your imperfections not in spite of them.

So in the spirit of Thanksgiving, I urge you to stand up and, without apology, express gratitude – to yourself.

Because you are here to shine and, as the saying goes, “your playing small does not serve the world.”

I invited my colleagues, fellow life coaches, to get the ball rolling. Here’s what they said:

“I love and appreciate that I am good at making to-do lists. They help me (and others) stay on top of things. I also love that I genuinely love seeing people truly be themselves. It just makes me so happy. Finally, I love that I can be perfectly happy lounging with my pups while reading the latest issue of Entertainment Weekly.”

Elise Touchette,

“What I love most is my curiosity. It’s taken me through deep and challenging waters, and it’s led me to splashing around in some fast-moving creeks. The biggest reward of curiosity is a wide open mind that’s truly peaceful and fun to hang around in.”

Susan Grace Beekman,

“I love the way I am moving deep within my mind and heart by doing The Work and in taking Compassionate Communication classes. I am a kinder person to myself and that’s where self love begins – at home.”

Sherold Barr,

“I love my ability to overeat, to underdress, to burn dinner, to be late, to get it wrong, to make the same mistake again, to forget everything I ever learned, even the stuff I learned the hard way, and get up, dust myself off, apologize, and forgive, accept and love myself.”

Terry DeMeo,

“I love that I have the ability to think in great detail and make something really complicated and time consuming if I want – but that I often choose to look at something, say “screw it” and simplify it to bare bones without a second thought. I love that I can laugh out loud anywhere – alone or in a crowd – and raise my energy level by about 5 bazillion watts in a matter of seconds.”

- Sheila Whittington,

“I love my love for kick-ass FBI/CIA chick characters, my Irish fiddle-playing side, my obsessively creative mind, my smiling soul, my inability to remember anything involving numbers, and all the ways I am authentically me.”

Abigail Steidley,

“The thing that i love most about me is my knowing that I deserve the best life that I can manifest. I no longer make apologies about my choices. I love being 57 and leading the life I want.”

Indrani Nathu Goradia,

“I love that I can BE silly and NOT FEEL silly when I do! I don’t stop singing in the car when I’m at a red light. And I’ve been known to sing GOTTA DANCE and do a little time-step in the aisle at Target (just ask my daughter!) all because I glimpsed the cover of the “Singin’ In The Rain” dvd. Frivolum Est Bonus (silly is good).”

Kelly Pratt,

“I love that I can learn. I love that I can love with an open heart. I love that my compassion for myself and others is ever expanding. I love that there is a master seamstress in my heart making a beautiful quilt of my many mistakes…to offer comfort, warmth, and love…for myself and others.”

-Terri DeMontrond,

“I love my own hunger. I love the fact that my longings are so big and so grand that people still laugh at me when I tell them my true dreams and goals. I spent years lamenting that I was too much, too intense, too grandiose, too greedy– but now I know that the flip side of all this yearning is my immense capacity for joy, revelry, magic, and delight. It’s one of my greatest gifts.”

- Anna Kunnecke,

“I love how my eyes sparkle when I laugh. I love how I see people inside. Where you live, what you wear, who you know, falls away so I can see and hear your heart without distraction. I love how I feel my energy touching someone else’s energy; that zip and tingle of recognition, In Lak’ech ‘I am another yourself.’”

- Darliss O’Donnell,

“I love that I have completely revised my life to reflect the life I want to live. I found the willingness and the courage to take chances, deal with successes and failures, and recognize that every failure is actually a gift that propels me toward greater happiness. I love that I am an eternal work in progress!”

- Theresa Trosky Robbins,

Here’s mine:

I love that I’m not afraid to express myself even when it comes off as too direct. I love my curiosity and my energy. I love how much I’m willing to be vulnerable. I love how much I love. I love that I am a great dancer. I love that I’m a genuine, sweet and funny person.

Now YOU go! Go ahead, play to your edge. Post a comment for the whole world to see (okay maybe just the people who read this blog) and declare your love for yourself!

Want More?

To see more from Amy’s Self-Care series, click here. To sign-up for her free e-course titled I Don’t Need Your Approval! How to Overcome Your Inner Approval Addict, click here!

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6 Responses

  1. Kelly Pratt says:

    Amy, great topic! Thanks for Shining a Light and giving everyone the opportunity to think about what we’re thankful for. I need to add a couple things to mine – I love my laugh lines and smile crinkles…. my photographer had photo-shopped them out… i made her put them back in! Anything that shows i’ve smiled and laughed alot in my life can’t be bad!!
    Happy Thanksgiving Everone!

  2. Jen Trulson says:

    I love that I have a love for life and can see beauty in the smallest of things. That connecting with people lights my fire. I love that I found my voice – use it when I want and sometimes, don’t say a thing, it’s for me to process. I love that I sing out loud, dance and meditate nearly daily… taking time for me! I love that I know I cannot give what I do not have for myself – so loving me is loving you.

    I love you Amy Pearson for shining your light on the world and sharing self-love. I’ve always wanted to start a self-love revolution… what do you say!!

  3. Lisa Benesh says:

    I love my ability to laugh at almost everything. It feels great to giggle and share that infectiously. I love that I feel free to be honest and not worry that I may not be taken seriously…seriously…

  4. Amy says:

    I love these !!! Let’s start a self-love revolution xxoo

  5. I love my willingness to apologise and start over from scratch. I love my struggles, I love being determined and not giving up regardless of what life throws at me. I love my creativity and my ever bubbling ideas and hairbrained plans. I love growing and learning. I love loving me (such a relief from what came before!)
    I love all of you for doing this and giving me a little sparkle of happiness this morning!

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