Thursday, February 12, 2015


Many men and women alike are gearing up to express the greatest affection for their lover, their partner, their spouse, or their latest winter-time fling. We get all dolled-up. We make reservations and plans. We buy expensive gifts. We create amazing monumental experiences for our loved one that will hopefully last longer in our memory than the evening's glass of wine, or a cognac-filled chocolate: or even longer than the blissful high of that naughty bedroom behavior that may follow. We want our mate for this particular evening to truly connect to us and the moment being experienced as one of the greatest waves of bliss our lives have ever seen. And we do this because we crave a connection. We do this because we crave a united oneness with the other person. We do this because we crave to be loved, and to feel loved. I mean, let's be honest: it is such an amazing feeling to be loved, cherished and cared for. Male or female, it is one of life's greatest accomplishments to feel and experience love exchanged between ourselves and another person in a natural and pure way. I know I love that feeling.

But I guess the bigger question becomes: why do we crave to feel and experience love exchanged between ourselves and another person? Why do we seek out that blissful feeling of a loving connection that is felt when we are intimate with someone? Why do we seek that gratification and appreciation when we do something nice for our Valentine? It is truly such an out-of-this-world feeling. But, is this feeling coming from the person that is in front of us (or possibly on top of us)? Or is this feeling coming from ourselves? Or, is this feeling coming from both persons? There are so many questions that can arise when it comes to love, and the experiential exchange of love: especially around times like Valentine's Day. Sometimes the questions just become too much. I usually just want to experience love and feel that love, instead of worrying about where it's coming from or where it's not coming from. I'd like to think that most people want a similar experience: to love someone because that person stimulates you to feel and experience love. And we can only experience that great love exchange if we truly love ourselves inside out. We can only experience that love if we can love ourselves in a genuine and honest way. But, what does that even mean: "I love myself". It sounds like something you'd hear in one of those popular cycling classes, or in a bliss-drenched yoga class: or in some Self-Help Motivational book.  Nothing wrong with that, but the concept and idea of "Loving Yourself" can seem somewhat farfetched and--in all honesty--silly. It was silly to me for a very long time before I actually loved myself. 

To love yourself means to love everything about yourself: literally everything. You love your strengths and weaknesses. You love your assets and liabilities. You love your power of confidence as well as your insecurities. You love your height, age, weight: regardless of where it stands or what it measures up to. You love your ethnic background: regardless of how vast or limited it may be. You love your religion. You love your beliefs, your education: or lack their of. You love who you are as a person in totality. Does that make sense? Everything about you, just is: until it is not. And it is our job as humans to love ourselves completely and fully. There will be certain things about ourselves that we can change in order to enhance our love of self: job, lover, financial bracket, living situation, beliefs, philosophies. And there are certain things about ourselves that we cannot change and that we must accept and love regardless: height, ethnic background, eye color, and many other characteristics. To love all things about ourselves can eventually lead to acceptance of self on multiple levels. We must learn to love all that we can't change about ourselves. And for the things that are subject to change, we must decide if we love those things as they stand, or if we need to change them so that we can eventually accept them and love them deeper: and not for anyone else but ourselves. At the end of the day, we must love everything about us, around us, and inside of us. 

When we love ourselves wholly and completely, we have no doubts about who we are. We are completely aware in every moment of what is working for us and what is not working for us. We are insightful and tuned into the present moment so much that we know the truth about everything and about ourselves in our lives. We know everything about the moment occurring in front of us. We know if the person that is laying next to us in bed is truly our life partner or not. We know if the job we report to is temporary, or our life-long dream. We know if the diet we choose to embrace is an honest choice from within, or a choice stimulated by the motives and impressions from others. We know if the lifestyle we are living is enhancing or demeaning our progress in the world. Love of one self allows for us to experience a power over all things inside of us and around us. And when we truly experience that love of self, we get to choose (yes, choose) where we would like to express our love in any given moment. We won't be so confused as to give our love away at any random fleeting moment that may only weaken us. We won't give our love away to some random person coming into our life for a sexual fling or a nostalgic Valentine's Day match up. Not to say that anything is wrong with that (trust me. nothing is wrong with a little fling or rapture with the moment if it elevates you). But if that moment or that person is not what you truly crave and desire, or not what brings joy and happiness to you at some level, what the fuck is the point? That can be a complete waste of time. 

When we love ourselves completely, we have no needs. We lack nothing. We have everything. Yup, when we are in love with ourselves, we don't need a dam thing. We only desire. We only crave. And desires and cravings are healthy, and a natural outpouring of who we are as humans. But even that desire or craving we have is not essential or determinant for our happiness. It is not so important that we cannot function in our daily lives without it. When we love ourselves, we know deeply and truly that desires and cravings may or may not happen. We know at the core of our hearts that our desires and cravings are not what makes us happy. When we turn our desires and cravings into needs, we set ourselves up for disappointment. We must be able to enhance and expand our happiness on our own without people or circumstances. I know it probably sounds opposite to everything we have been 'taught': but it's true. You can't make a person, a thing, or a circumstance, money or a job, you can't make any of these things love you or make you happy. These are things that add value to our lives as humans. They can only add value and credence to our lives if our lives are already happy and blissful. So to chase after and attempt to grasp something that may not love you back or may not give you the ultimate happiness that you seek is deadly: again, we are setting ourselves up for potential disappointment. But if we love ourselves, whether or not we get that desire or craving (or lover) is irrelevant. The desire or craving will make our day, but we are not ruled by it. If we lose out or miss out, we may feel disappointment. However, we are able to carry on loving ourselves as if nothing happened: hopefully.  Because after we love ourselves, then it is possible for there to be love of another person.  If you love someone and they love you back, it is very likely that you love yourself: and they probably love themselves. And they probably love everything about you in the same way you love everything about them (if the love is real). To love them is to, in fact, love yourself: and to love yourself allows for you to truly love them. It's like looking in to a mirror and loving the reflection. Beautiful, isn't it?


How do you love yourself?  That's Easy. Here's what to do:

Step 1: Don't give a fuck.

Step 2: Be yourself.

Step 3: Change what you don't like

Step 4: Love and accept what will never change

Step 5: Do things that add health and happiness to your life

Step 6: Chase your dreams

Step 7: Tell someone you love them

Step 8: Forgive yourself

Step 9: Repeat Step 1

"What? It ain't no more to it." ~The Notorious B. I. G.  

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