Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s sonnet ‘How Do I Love Thee?’ is one of the most famous love poems in the English language and is apparently a personal dedication to her husband. It beautifully expresses the utter devotion of a lifelong partnership and is incredibly romantic. Falling in love can happen very quickly and can be overwhelming but what’s really amazing is the way long-standing love can evolve over the years – it’s wonderful when relationships can survive every obstacle life throws at them. I think it is safe to say that loving is not always easy. For me, relationships with other people depend very much on your relationship with yourself. The more you treat yourself with compassion and acceptance, the more able you will be to cope with someone else’s problems.
It is for this reason that I made such a dedicated commitment and married myself 🙂 In this blog ‘How Do I Love Me?’ i will explore the many different ways in which it’s possible to nurture self love and try to be the best version of yourself. ‘Self love’ might be a bit of a buzz word at the moment, with various brands jumping on the wagon and trying to sell you pamper products. Sure, it’s a great idea to take time out – to have a hot bath, a glass of vino and slap on a face mask – but there’s a bit more to it than that. I believe these are the key focuses for self love:
- Awareness – self care is about paying attention to what is going on in your body and mind, it is about noticing your individual responses to your environment.
- Acceptance – we all make mistakes and disappoint others and we will continue doing it as long as we live, every time we fail we learn how to improve.
- Compassion – kindness starts with the self, if you are able to forgive yourself and have your own best interests at heart then it will help you understand others.
- Presence – our disposable culture is so fast-paced and over-stimulated, don’t allow pressure to become stress, focus on each moment and enjoy an ease of being.
- Gratitude – you will never be happy if you’re constantly seeking a better life, appreciate the true value of what you have and just how magnificent the world around you is.