But the idea that you have to fully love yourself before loving someone else is not true. It’s a banner hung by people who have read too many self help books. It can be a wall we hide behind because we’re afraid to love.
It’s also lined with shame. It sets you up to ring a high bell that’s unattainable. Because loving yourself doesn’t come with a certificate or a finish line. It’s a lifelong process. It’s not a class. It’s a concept.
It changes as you change, your circumstances change, and the people around you change.
So no matter how much work you’ve done on yourself, or how far you’ve come in life, there are days you’re not going to love yourself. Because of so many other factors.
But we all snap back at times. We all live with our demons to a certain extent. Because we all have our stories. And our stories have caused imprints and false beliefs. Because none of us enter adulthood unscarred.
That banner injects people with fear and they begin to dig moats instead of building bridges.
So it’s actually not about loving yourself. Let’s move away from the pressure of that, especially when it comes to qualifying yourself to love someone else.
Instead, see loving yourself as the action of self love / self care in your everyday life, your everyday choices from what you decide to eat to who you decide to love and surround yourself with.
When you get to a place where you like yourself, the action of loving yourself will come more naturally. You’ll have non-negotiables.
You won’t tolerate certain behavior from others.
You’ll be more gentle with yourself, more forgiving. You’ll believe you deserve more, better, different. You’ll finally stop breaking the promises you’ve made with you. And the relationship you have with yourself will improve.
Still not convinced?
Okay, here’s the other reason why “You have to love yourself before you love someone else” is a bumper sticker.
The way we learn to love ourselves is through other people and the relationships we have with them.
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