IT IS NOT SELFISH TO LOVE YOURSELF

"Why did you buy flowers? What's the special occasion?"

"Oh there's no special reason, I just love myself and I love flowers, so I bought myself flowers." 



Did you know that it's ok to be nice to yourself and do what makes you happy? It may sound silly but I didn't know that for a very long time. This was a lesson that took me 20 years to learn. I lived my whole life trying to please people and disregarded my own happiness. I cared about making other people feel good and my personal needs came last. 

You see, I was born with strong empathy and emotional awareness, so I have always been able to pick up on the feelings of others. Even when I was four years old I would cry when I saw someone else crying. I just felt it too. As I got older, I still took on the unhappiness or pain of others in order to relate with them. I would try to bring people up, while putting myself down. I thought I was being humble and unselfish...but I was wrong, very wrong. 

As a matter of fact, even though I thought that this was helping others, it really wasn't. I neglected myself which made me more dependent on everyone else to fulfill my needs. Since I put so much of my heart into caring for them, I expected the same effort in return. I never got back what I was giving because I was giving way too much of myself. All it did was cause disappointment. 

The Bible says to "love your neighbor, as yourself". For a long time, my interpretation of this was to love my neighbor by treating them as I would want my neighbor to treat me... rather than treating my neighbor the same as I treat myself. I thought it meant that we should all just love each other and I disregarded the fact that I needed to love myself too. I hope that makes sense! 

Anyway, long story short, this realization happened when I started going to Christian counseling and it changed my life. Ever since I started being mindful of loving myself, I have been happier and my relationships have improved because I'm not expecting too much from other people. It definitely did not happen overnight. I didn't just wake up and say "Yay I love myself now!" No...it has been a process. It's a deep feeling and it has to be cultivated like any loving relationship. 

So now I don't expect to get my love tank filled from others all the time. That expectation is draining on both sides. Of course it is still nice to receive little things and feel loved by people but now I see that I can care for myself as well by doing the things that I love. I can buy myself flowers. I can give myself time to do the things I enjoy. I can allow myself to feel happy. I can take care of my body and feel good. I can say no to others if I don't want to do what they are asking of me. (That last one is still hard for me...but necessary) 

Disclaimer: Putting your needs first may disappoint people sometimes and that's OK. In the long run, you will have more to give if you understand your own needs.

Not to mention, the more I love myself, the better I can know how to love others. It's amazing! Also, the more I feel loved by myself, the more I understand God's love for me. He is the only one who is with me everyday and he is constantly showering me with love, without any pressuring expectations of something in return. Why? Because He doesn't need our love! He loves Himself enough! Does He want our love? Yes He does, but He never holds it against us and that is what REAL love is.

Plus, now that I give myself more "me" time, I am able to stop and pay attention to the little blessings God is giving me each day. It is truly a life changing discovery.

Again, I feel like this is probably the most important lesson I've learned in life thus far. I urge you to think on this concept and put it in action if you haven't already. At first, I thought it was just a fad or a humanistic concept to 'Love Yourself' (or just my favorite Justin Beiber song) but my friends, it is much more than that! It is a lifestyle change. 

Comment below with some ways that you show yourself love! <3

Always Love,

Darcy

Comments

Popular Posts