The most important love to have in your life is Love of Self. Self Love stands as the gateway to success in every area of your life.
This is not the Ego based love that says: Yes I love myself – I am so beautiful or I am so smart. The real Self Love is the love that demands that you treat yourself with kind respect and reverence. With the proper Self Love when you make mistakes or fail at certain things, your response and internal dialogue is one that is positive and supportive.
I am reminded of a professional golfer that was in position to win a major golf tournament with only one hole to play on Sunday afternoon. After playing 18 holes of golf for four straight days and leading the field of the best golfers in the world the championship was right in his grasp. As many would say it was his to lose – and lose he did. With a comfortable lead of a couple of strokes ahead of the closest golfer, all that was required was to safely score a par on the last hole to win the entire week’s tournament. Along with the prestige of winning one of professional golf’s Major tournaments there was a hefty financial prize on the line as well.
This famous golfer made a few choices regarding the golf clubs he would use that had even the announcers wondering why he would choose to play the hole in this manner. To make a long story short, it turns out that the announcers and 90% of the fans watching were correct in thinking that this golfer’s choice on how to play this last hole of the tournament was not only baffling but also did not seem very smart. In fact the golfer had two other decision points during that hole where his decision went against conventional wisdom. As fate would have it the golfer struggled to get the ball in the last hole and accumulated so many additional strokes that it cost him the tournament.
After the round of golf and during the press conference this golfer was asked about his choices during that last hole. His immediate response was “I am such an idiot.” This quote ended up on the front page of the following day’s newspaper.
The statement although seemingly understandable, showed a side to this golfer that you may have experienced as well. The tendency to beat your self up after making a mistake or to be hard on yourself when you have failed is very common but not very helpful.
Knowing that the words you use and the way you talk to yourself means so very much to the quality of life you live should be enough to cause you to pause before going down the path of self degradation. As hard as it may be to avoid berating or belittling yourself it is a necessary restraint that must be exercised in all cases. Otherwise the feeling, the vibration, the frequency, the emotion of that moment and experience will find fertile ground to plant its root in your subconscious mind and grow deep roots that will produce the flowers and fruit of failure for times beyond that initial moment of failure.
So how should you respond?
One way to think about the self talk that will reflect the proper Self Love is to think of how a loving mother speaks to her child when the child has failed at something important. Although I am sad to think there are some parents that would call their child an idiot – the power of a mother’s true love would not even think of belittling or berating the child. The response instead would be one of positive support not negative criticism. Comments like
“It’s ok, this is only one test you failed.” Or “You’ll need to work a little harder and learn from this to do better next time.” Are the kinds of positive supportive responses I can imagine a caring parent saying in response to their child’s mishaps and mistakes.
When you find yourself in a situation that generates a feeling that you could have or should have done better – always try to remember the love of a mother. Treat yourself with that same love. The Self Love that speaks the language of support, of respect, of reverence of heartfelt caring. The mother knows that the words today will affect the internal belief and confidence of her child in the future. Its like giving your child a comforting protective hug when they have fallen down.
Love yourself this same way. You deserve this especially from yourself. Give yourself a great big hug!
So don’t fall into that trap of being harder on yourself than you would be on someone else or on your own child. You know the damage that can be done. Also know that you are not immune to the impact of negative critical language whether spoken by someone else or by yourself. The interesting thing to note is that when the information is coming from within yourself it has greater weight, and thus a greater impact on your psyche, self belief and ultimately the results of your future.
Practice Self Love by speaking the language that supports your respect, honor and reverence for who you are and who you want to become.
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