Where did the love go?
It's Valentines week. It's the season of "love", or that's what every marketing company would have us believe.
We're not complete until we find "our other half" "our soul mate" "the one". But perhaps that's where we all go wrong.
We are programmed so much to focus on looking for love in the world around us that we forgot that all love starts with us.
Love starts with me loving me and you loving you. But how can we do this in a world where the messages are so mixed.
If we look in the mirror and like what we see we're considered "conceited" "arrogant". If we don't like what we see we are "neurotic".
The messages bombard us "too skinny" "too fat", "too pretty" "too plain" "too ugly".
"They've let themself go" - I could go on, but I'm sure you've heard this already.
It's hard to break through all the noise around us and how are we to find love if we do not love ourselves?
I recently attended a burlesque for body confidence day with Venus Gallacatica the morning of the event I was terrified. I was about to dance around in my undies with 4 women I'd never met before (though to be honest it would have been more terrifying with friends) and it really opened up a lot of things for me about loving myself.
I thought I'd come a long way before that day, but I recognised I have some way to go. We practised our moves in front of a mirror and I immediately started comparing myself to the other women. I've lost about 2 stone in weight in the last 12 months and had been feeling really good about the way I looked, but I still compared myself to them, thinking they were "slimmer" " had better legs" "were sexier" than me and I did have to give myself a bit of an internal slap.
Here I was comparing myself to a woman around 6ft tall. I am 5ft 4 inch. She said she felt like a giraffe, I felt like a squat leg dwarf. There was no need to compare, no need to judge, but it's ingrained into our DNA.
Over the next few weeks, I contemplated this and wondered about some of the many reactions I'd had and decided it's time for me to take the next step on my journey to loving myself. to get over my FEAR, of actually loving every part of me.
I can see how my lack of self-love has impacted relationships and also my business. I keep returning to the things I don't enjoy in life, almost like a self-punishment to show "I don't deserve a life that I love" But how can I have a life that I love when I'm not loving me deep down. How can I have deep meaningful friendships or just fun friendships if I can't love myself?
I blow hot and cold with friends because I think that "they are too busy" "they have people they'd really want to talk to or be with" "that I'm a nuisance" "that I'm weird and they're only talking to me to be polite", "that they only accepted my friend request - which I regretted sending as soon as I sent it - to be nice and not offend me"
The side of my business that is highly successful and is not the side I love, but its the side I know I can do because I did it for 20 years. The two elements of my business I love, coaching and writing, the bits that light me up like a lighthouse covered in fairy lights, I neglect. So it's time to change and it's time for me to look at what love means to me.
What does love mean to you?
For me, I need to focus on my love of the way I look, the way I am, to my inner wise woman. To be true to me.
So I'm starting small.
Firstly I am reconnecting with me and who I am. In Myers Briggs personality types I am an INFP and when I am true to this and I am happy I am naturally awkward and a bit goofy and weird. Funnily enough, I find these incredibly attractive traits in other humans but not in myself and when I saw this recent quote "if you have never seen the energetic, clumsy and adorable side of an INFP it means you have never made one happy" (From INFPtribe) - it felt incredibly true to me and actually if I love these traits in others, its time to love them in myself.
I need to listen more to my heart, not my head. When I'm stressed I fall out of love with feeling and become a logical nightmare. (A typical stress response of my type). I feel guilty for doing things I love.
So as its the week of "love" I'm focusing on loving myself a little bit more every day;
I need to listen more to my heart, not my head. When I'm stressed I fall out of love with feeling and become a logical nightmare. (A typical stress response of my type). I feel guilty for doing the things I love, but also I'm laughing that it's taken me this long to figure that out.
I actually like my body and other than wanting to be more supple and having some more muscle tone, actually its pretty good for a woman who's not really loved it that much, and I do love dressing quirky, that's who I am.
I like the way my mind works. I imagine it's like an old bookshop with loads of dusty books on loads of topics, some not so dusty that do get used more than others, and loads of filing cabinets with papers spewing out of them, with a few fairy's flitting about trying to remember where they put everything, whilst the cats dive around the place making piles of books scatter to the floor and my inner witch snoozes in the corner by the wood-burning stove.
I'm surprised when people describe me as highly organised and efficient. Believe me, I'm winging it, doing everything last minute because I got distracted by a rainbow.
I like who I am and I am no longer going to compromise my values and beliefs. So I will always look for the good in everyone, I will strive to be kind and patient, help where I can, try and make people smile. I'll outwardly respond in childlike wonder to the magic and wonder in the world and be forever curious. I love positivity and will always focus on this.
I will make connections with positive happy people who light me up and will assume as they are speaking to me, that they want to speak with me. I will overthink less and just be, more.
I will be proud of my coaching and writing and love the people I help with my words. And I will celebrate this life more and more.
I already love so many aspects of my life and I will love everything I have now and then everything I dream of will become my reality.
Only by loving myself right down into my inner wise woman, when I really embrace my inner witch and make her my outer witch, will I really be true to love myself.
As I love myself, the right people will come into my life and my life becomes a life I love every day.
This Valentines week, what can you do to love yourself a little bit more?
When you believe and you love you, then you will have the life you love and if you want it the love from an external person, not necessarily your soul mate. But the love that's right for you, right now at this time.
Love and Light
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