Self-Love: The Key To Personal Liberation

no apologies

They say, the most difficult thing to do is to love one’s self. In my experience, this is true.

What does self-love mean, and why is it so difficult?

Self-love:

  • Self-love is to be honest with one’s self first and foremost. Even if you choose not to be honest with others at any given moment.

  • To appreciate and accept yourself as you are: to give yourself permission to be exactly what you really want to be.

  • To care for yourself enough to live your life according to your own will and not to the demands and expectations of others.

  • To validate and approve of yourself, your choices, your desires, your unique self-expression, no matter what the rest of the world thinks.

  • To love yourself enough to trust yourself.

  • To accept your ‘wayward’ emotions without judgment.

I don’t know if you agree about the difficulty of loving one’s self. I have explored and struggled with this thing called self-love for some time, and it felt like I was challenging the whole world with its agreed upon belief system which demands that we must put others first before ourselves, so that we don’t appear selfish by catering first to our needs before the needs of others. The result of this hypocritical belief is that while we may appear generous, kind and strong on the outside, we may actually be suffering, tormented and fragile inside because we are too scared to show our true feelings, to express our true desires, and live authentic lives.

If we love ourselves enough to give ourselves the permission to be who we are, it will be easier for us to permit others to be who they are. As we accept our idiosyncrasies, our mistakes, our nonstandard or non-mainstream desires, we will find ourselves more understanding and permissive of others’ mistakes and idiosyncrasies. If we love ourselves enough not to beat ourselves up to conform to some established standard of normality or morals, we would not also be as critical and judgmental of others who we think are not measuring up to such social standards.

It is true that, at the core, the way we treat ourselves (consciously and, mostly, unconsciously) is the way we treat others. It is when we are cruel and exacting of ourselves (even if we don’t know or admit it) that we also become cruel and exacting of others.

So when we fully love ourselves for who we are, we set ourselves free. We let ourselves off the hook. And simultaneously, we set others free. For it is in understanding and acknowledging our own complexities, our strengths and weaknesses, our fears and insecurities that we truly come to develop genuine understanding and sympathy for others.

Four Things I Learned When I Did Not Have Money

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There is an ebb and flow to everything. It is the very rhythm of Nature. And when we look closer, we see that it is God’s beautiful design. – Allu

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falling into place

This post is a sequel to my previous post about money.

Although the ebb of money in my experience did a good job to dampen my mood and make me question and doubt my choices and progress, I can say that the lessons I learned from the situation are very valuable for my purposes.

The experience is, in fact, what I needed to bring me closer to where I want to be.

Where do I want to be?

Where I want to be is a state of mind, or what you would call a ‘state of being’.

Here are some of the things I learned when I did not have money:

1. I learned to appreciate the little things that are usually taken for granted. I think this is the most common thing we all come to realize when something is taken away from our experience. It is said that an apple is the sweetest apple if it’s the only apple.

2. I gradually learned not to be dependent on the idea of money as the basis of my freedom, happiness, self-worth, self-confidence, and fun.

How did I practically arrive to number 2?

  • I learned, or was rather compelled, to develop other skills.

  • I activated unused assets.

  • I appreciated more and highlighted existing strengths and used them to get to my goal. 

  • I discovered ways to have fun without using money currency.

  • Most importantly, I learned to trust (as I found myself in a situation where I have no other options – but to trust).

I noticed that the points enumerated above are simply mechanisms for adaptation. And if we adapt to changing circumstances, we evolve – a very good thing! For when we lack something, we develop another thing to help us adapt and survive in our current environment. We are pressed to explore more of our capabilities and creativity, which in turn, prod us to become more well-rounded, more integrated, and in the end, happier humans.

This reminds me of Tyrion Lannister in the Game of Thrones series. Since he is a dwarf, Tyrion cannot fight like the other knights and swordsmen to protect himself and his king or queen. His remaining option was to hone and employ his wit, humor and intellect. While some of the best swordsmen and influential characters were annihilated, Tyrion, the dwarf, survived and thrived.

We are reminded of what we often hear about, ‘count your blessings’. This is to say, not to sulk and dwell on our misfortunes or lack. Instead, we appreciate and amplify what we already have. It could be intangible things like our clarity, peacefulness, authenticity, humor, affection, social skills, etc.

3. Another difficult learning I finally came to grasp was to not let external appearances dictate or overwhelm my perception and mood. Now if we can exhibit and maintain this intention to be undisturbed – not only by the looks of our finances, but also by the sour weather, or by the acts of other people – we can say that we have succeeded in finding that coveted solid inner foundation of strength that state of beingwhich is so calm yet so strong that it is unmoved, by either praise or slander, so to speak.

Obviously, easier said than done. But . . .

4. Lastly, and this goes deeper into metaphysics, is knowing that we are the creators of our reality. That each individual is Creator Source Being, and that whatever happens to you is your own manifestation (conscious or unconscious) which your ‘larger self’, together with other co-creators, has created as it serves you in one way or another.

I have since learned that life is a mind trick. All that happens to us can serve our highest good if we look at it with the right perspective.

As a Creator Source Being, I created my financial ebb to learn these things I learned.

Needless to say, these learnings are applicable to other areas in our lives as well, where we think something is missing or lacking.

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Money Is Power

Honest. Admit it. Whether we like it or not, money is power.

We may be strongly resistant to the thought that our sense of self-worth could be tied to how much money we have, but having very little or no money at all does significantly affect our level of self-confidence. For so-called conscious “spiritual workers”, especially, it is particularly difficult and embarrassing to admit this to oneself, since we loathe the thought that our value and confidence level could be affected by a mere “material” thing, such as money.

However, rather than to go on continually denying (as many Light Workers do) that our feelings are not a bit affected by our financial circumstances, it serves us to understand our confused or ambivalent relationship to money, so that we may find peace with it.

The first step is to see money for what it really is.

money is power

Money is energy. Energy is power. Money is power.

Energy, money, power – they all go through cycles of surges and declines. And just like the ebb and flow of the ocean tides, our emotions are naturally affected by the same energetic movements – the ebb and flow of money in our experience.

So there is really nothing to be embarrassed about when our moods and self-confidence is dampened by the ebb in our finances. It is but natural that we don’t feel so confident and energized when money energy is on the low, as it is natural to feel perky and confident when money energy is on the flow.

However, although we can’t help but feel dispirited when we are face to face with financial ebb, we can always find a way to use the experience to our advantage.

In my next blog post, I’d like to share some of the interesting things I learned when I didn’t have money.

Five Guaranteed Ways to Become More Lovable

puppy n mantis

Become like a cat or a puppy, cute and adorable without trying.

Become like a flower, confident in its beauty, whether it’s a rose or a sunflower.

Become like a tree, lofty yet grounded.

Become like the sun, warm and generous.

Become like the breeze, cool and refreshing.

black cat

 . . . meow . . .

The Creative Types

What would the world be like without the creative types?

The ones who create music that alter our moods, like a drug?

The ones who mix colors into equally sublime and terrifying images?

The ones who tell stories, to entertain and amuse, to offer insights and guidance on how to live passionate and happier lives?

The ones who move their bodies in elegant, powerful and fantastic ways to the beat of mild or wild rhythms?

And the many more creative types who are fearless to self-express in a world where to conform is to survive?

A world without artists and mystics would be a drab and dull world, I surmise.

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creativity and gratitude

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Self-worth and Accomplishments

For most of us, self-worth is tied to our perception of our accomplishments. We feel less worthy when we have no accomplishment for the day, for the week, for the month, for the year, or in our entire lifetime. We want to do more, to accomplish more – so that we can prove to ourselves and to others that we are worthy – worthy of others’ attention, affection or love.

There is nothing wrong with reaching out for more. In fact, desire – the summoning of Spirit – is what calls us to move forward in life. And as we move forward, following what makes us tick, following our passion, our joy, we expand our Be-ing. The expansion of our Be-ing is our goal. But then there is no end in our expansion because we are infinite Beings on an eternal journey. So in effect, there is no real destination, no end point. The destination is the journey itself. So why not enjoy the present journey instead of living in an illusory future which is always out of reach?

There is nothing wrong with wanting to accomplish more, and more. It is OK to set a goal and reach for it, because it is in reaching for that goal that the inner life-force – seeking to be expressed externally – is stimulated and summoned. It is OK to accomplish so that we can feed our family, so that we can make our lives comfortable and so we could fully enjoy all that life has to offer.

And there is absolutely nothing wrong with proving our self-worth through our accomplishments and attainments. For a long time, this appeared to be the most natural process and it is the modality society believes in. It is indeed logical that when one is accomplished in something, say for example, one excelled as an artist, scientist, spiritual guru, businessman, scholar, etc, it is almost always that this person is looked-up to as someone worthy of our admiration, respect, and attention. But what if someone is perceived to have no accomplishments, or not accomplished enough? Is he or she not worthy of our respect, attention and affection by virtue of their being a valid expression of the God Source?

Accomplishments are something we use to compare ourselves with others. Once we compare ourselves with another, however, we are unnecessarily making life more difficult for each of us. Nobody is exactly alike. Another’s journey is different from yours – not superior not inferior, just different. Their accomplishments, or lack thereof, is maybe what is relevant to their current journey of self-discovery. You are not necessarily meant to exactly accomplish someone else’s accomplishments nor your accomplishments to be made a standard for everyone else to follow. Remember: what you value is not necessarily the same with what another person values. How you sing a song is not necessarily how another wants to sing the same song.

A sense of self-worth premised on accomplishments is an upstream journey. We believe that we would only feel our best and prove our worth after we finish a big project, or when we have a certain amount of money, or when we are in the relationship that we want, or when we have attained spiritual enlightenment. It is a perpetual struggle because the sense of self-worth we are trying to attain becomes elusive. We are always trying to get somewhere, yet we are never arriving. It is a long, precarious process, until we tire and give-up frustrated.

When we believe in our inherent self-worth regardless of our accomplishments, we are deliberately putting ourselves in an excellent starting position. This is because our full awareness of our self-worth becomes the very stable foundation upon which our confidence to pursue what we want to pursue and accomplish what we want to accomplish, is based on. Believing in our inherent self-worth thus makes our journey of accomplishing, even much easier.

If we come to think of it, accomplishments are actually only an excuse we use to believe in our self-worth. Our hard-to-please reasoning mind tends to fail to acknowledge that regardless of so-called accomplishments, we have always been worthy by virtue of our inherent divinity.