Love is everything.
I know because I’d searched and chased Love for what felt like a lifetime, not recognizing that Love was already in me, with me, and at work for me – one of my greatest life lessons and the theme of my book.
So, I get it. Humanity needs Love, wants Love, and in our usual sooner-than-later fashion – we want it now! Especially in the LOVE month, right?
But wait. Before we prepare for Valentine’s Day, buy/receive all the cards, flowers, and chocolates in the world, who’s that standing off in the corner, wondering if anyone wants to play?
Like vs. Love
I think the best Love in the world comes from a heart who Loves him/herself. But how hard is it to Love yourself, if you don’t really Like yourself?
If Love covers a TON of faults, flaws, and failures, I offer that Like strips the covers off, looks those things square in the eyes, and enables you to still accept and value yourself.
When you Like yourself, you actually give Love something to cover – otherwise, you wouldn’t care. Like is that bridge to Love, where all of your shortcomings and works-in-progress can cross over safely into the care of Love, and there receive the work of Love. Because you Like yourself, Love shows you how to either grow, improve, transform those things you’re less proud of, OR become lovingly content with what is.
Be honest. Are you a little challenged with truly Liking yourself? Then, sower beware! Here are 3 types of seeds (Weeds) that produce Dislike in our lives and choke self-love – some we plant, some we allow others to plant:
- Weeds of Comparison – No, you don’t have Kim’s butt, Rihanna’s eyes, or Beyonce’s legs. Yes, they did it faster than you, they have more money, friends, or influence than you have right now, and you haven’t got it all together yet. Those are the facts. But the truth is – Love is not lazy. Love doesn’t assign us Xeroxed life plans, where we all have the exact same path, purpose, and resources all at the same time. Stop comparing! Take your eyes off of their paper, and work Love’s perfect plan for YOUR life – a plan to prosper you and give you an abundant future.
- Weeds of Negative Rumination – Have you found a tiny piece of circumstantial evidence to support your negative outlook, and you replay it over and over and over in your head? What about those mean, nasty words someone you loved spoke over you? When you think too deeply and repeatedly about negativity, in agreement with it, you plant it deeper into your psyche. Quitters, what you plant bears fruit! Like doesn’t stand a chance against negative ruminating forces, BUT… neither can negativity withstand the rumination on Love, which blooms perfect peace.
- Weeds of Unhealthy Criticism – Does every mistake you make require the death penalty? Do you beat yourself up in judgment because you missed, again? Mistakes happen, that’s why you’re called a Human. Life comes with enough heartache and disappointment for you to add unhealthy self-criticism to the mix. Recognize, learn, and change! Now for the sake of balance, there is a such thing as healthy criticism – whose goal is correction and improvement. Healthy criticism keeps you on your toes, holds you accountable, and prevents you from going to “victim-land”. It’s good to Like healthy criticism, but the former only serves to pull you away from any hopes of Liking your “bad” self.
Quitters, it’s my hope that you quit any patterns of Dislike in your lives, and learn to be more and more gentle with yourself. Like yourself to true Love for yourself.
Prayer-note: “Dear Love, I quit neglecting to Like myself and all that I am. Teach me to be more accepting and gentle with Me in my hands.”
Do you agree with Like before Love? Is Liking yourself just as important as Loving yourself?