When I first started a relationship with myself, I didn't even know what that meant. Don't you need two people for a relationship? I had no idea where to begin.
I had accomplished alot in life, becoming a lawyer and yoga teacher trainer, traveled the World, was well liked by all, intelligent, fun, kind and attractive, I always had male interest. I would have told you I loved myself but quickly learned after starting therapy and reiki self healing that I actually didn't know what self love meant at all.
That I trained in energy healing and hired a therapist on top of already having taught yoga and meditation for years should tell you how serious I was about learning self love.
I learned that self love does not come from our external accomplishments rather a place inside us at our core...a place most of us haven't know since shortly after we were born. (How we learn to unlove ourselves is another blog post on the way soon;)
And we're not taught self love in school but we damned well should be! And most our parents didn't teach us because they were never taught. We learned how to love from people who didn't love themselves so how are we to know what self love ?
To be clear this is not to bash parents, lack of self love is global human condition we all suffer from but we can... and are changing that. Just like a relationship between two people takes practise so does a relationship with yourself and this is how I started:
1. Inner Child Work: I started to lose my mind after being told I may not be able to have children at 35 years old. Thinking my time was running out and I'd never meet a man with whom to procreate (yes, I truly believed noone would want to have children with me or want me if I couldn't have children), I decided to talk to a humanistic psychotherapist and it was the best decision I ever made because with her facilitation I met my inner child for the first time, little Mandi - she gave me the first insight into who I am, not who I learned to be...this was the spark that fueled my desire to learn self love.
How do you do inner child work?
With constant intention, every day. Every time you judge or criticize yourself or feel rejected talk to yourself the way you would a child. You wouldn't tell your child he or she is worthless or ugly, so don't say it to yourself! Say what you would say to a kid. If you find it hard to remember throughout the day, talk to him or her at night before bed, or in the mornings...I promise it works to bring more love unto yourself. Use a photo of you as a child if visualizing doesn't work.
2. Affirmations and Self Energy Healing:
I would set a few affirmations in the morning, things I wanted to believe but didn't yet, such as "I am worthy of love, I am enough", "everything I want in life, flows freely to me", and "I am happy, calm and relaxed". Starting with the crown of my head, I would hold my hands there and state OUT LOUD, one of the affirmations in combos of THREE (so 3x or 6x or 9x because there is power in 3s). I would then move on to my third eye (low forehead), throat, heart, etc. And no matter where on my body I had my hands, when I stated out loud "I am worthy of love, I am enough" I would start crying, this meant I didn't actually believe it. And I had to learn not to judge myself for being a grown woman crying alone in her room...I learned to let the tears come, sometimes wailing loud enough for passers by to hear.
How do you do self healing with affirmations?
Choose between 3 and 10 things you want to be true about yourself/your life. Holding your hands on your body with loving and healing intention, repeat your affirmations out loud in combos of 3. And do this throughout the day if you can...the more you do the more you believe and the faster the universe provides you what you want to attract. I PROMISE IT WORKS IF YOU STICK WITH IT!
3. Heart Meditation:
n the evenings, I would sit in front of my altar to meditate, placing my hands, one atop the other at the center of my chest and focus on love, sending little red emoji love heart vibes through my hands to my heart and from my heart to my hands, breathing deeply and intentionally into that space...sometimes thinking of little Mandi. For months doing this would often invoke tears, so if tears arise for you let them come! Tears are a good thing, tears are healing, crying means you are cleaning out the unconscious pain that no longer serves you and creating space for more self love.
How do you do heart meditation?
You don't need an altar but I suggest one as it creates a sacred space, you can get a guide to building your own by subscribing at www.namastenut.com. At least start with a lit candle as a sacred point, put your hands on your heart center, close your eyes, start to breathe deeply and repeat silently to yourself exactly what you would want your lover to say to you, such as, "I love you, you are beautiful inside and out, I can't believe how lucky I am to be in a relationship with you". Sounds a bit silly but it works and think... if we'd been doing this since childhood it wouldn't be silly at all!
4. Mirror Work:
I'd look myself in the mirror, straight in the eyes and list out every little feature on my face - the bits I didn't like and the bits I did like - out loud, and say that I love it, for example- "I love the mole on your forehead that in certain light can look like a pimple and that your ex suggested you have removed"..."I love that your nose is asymmetrical"..."I love your top lip being thinner than your bottom"..."I love your enlarged pores, they make you part of who you are"...go through every little detail of your face, especially the bits you have been criticizing and notice how you feel when you say it, you'll notice it's much harder stating out loud that you love your big nose than it is stating you love your deep sea blue eyes. Start treating your face like it is the most beautiful face in the World and see how others start to see the same.
Once you love your face, move onto loving every inch and blemish of your naked body in the mirror...every stretch mark, lump and bump...once you start loving your imperfections they tend to start disappearing:)
5. Only speak kind words to yourself all day long no matter what:
This ties in with Inner Child work. Think how often you criticize yourself, probably far more often than you would your friends or your child self! Every time you do this turn the criticism around, for example: " I'm so dumb how could I lock my keys in the house!" becomes, "you are very busy and have a lot on your mind, give yourself a break, accidents happen!"
Remember self judgment is self sabotage. You don't judge and sabotage your friends so stop doing it to yourself.
A relationship with yourself takes work just like any other relationship and practise makes perfect!!! For more self love tips and wisdom subscribe to my mailing list if you have not already and email me or insta message me if you have any questions or need guidance.
I'll be in Vegas from mid December to mid January and Dublin for a few weeks in January so if you want a private session email me:)
And if you've got good self love tips, please share them below, I'd love to hear what else is working for people!