The Secret to Happiness: Self-Love“To love oneself is the beginning of a life-long romance.”
~ Oscar Wilde

Have you ever felt like you just can’t “get it together”? Perhaps you are unhappy with one your physical body, job, relationships, finances, or all of the above. You’ve tried to change your thinking habits and stay focused, but things still aren’t working out the way you want them to.

Before you give up completely, there is one simple question that has the power to turn it all around. How you answer this question will fully explain why your life either works or doesn’t work. The question is… do you love yourself?

You will know if you genuinely love yourself if you can look in a mirror, say “I love you”, and genuinely mean it. Try this now. If you do love yourself you’ll feel the same comforting warmth in your chest that you experience when you express unconditional love to a beloved child, spouse, friend, or pet.

But what happens if you don’t love yourself at all? What if you hate yourself? You’ll know this to be true if you can’t get the words out without expressing anger or tears, if you feel a tightening sensation in your chest, are unable to look yourself in the eye, or if you laugh uncomfortably. In addition, all the reasons why you believe you’re unlovable will begin to surface from your subconscious mind.

Discovering you don’t love yourself is painful, but it’s also a gift. The benefit is that by coming to terms with a lack of self-love, you’ll uncover all the negative beliefs that are blocking your alignment with happiness. You’ll realize that there is only one reason you haven’t been happy in the past, and it’s because that on some level, you didn’t believe you deserved to be.

People who don’t love themselves are kings and queens of self-sabotage. Although they may be conscious of the Law of Attraction, read stacks of self-help books, say affirmations, go to workshops, and generally do a lot of external action; in the end they either accomplish nothing or are completely dissatisfied with the wonderful things that they have accomplished. Their unconscious need for self-punishment ensures that the circumstances of their lives will never measure up.

Externalizing Pain

Disliking or hating oneself is extremely painful; so painful that for many people it is a wound they are never able to face. The quickest and most common way out of escaping emotional pain is by externalizing it.

We externalize pain every time we create a negative circumstance in our life path. These situations act as scapegoats for pain and enable us to blame something or someone outside of ourselves, rather than view them as the mirrors that they are. It’s much easier to blame our emotional pain on disease, dysfunctional relationships, empty bank accounts, or unfulfilling careers than it is to face up to our own self-hatred. As painful as it may be to admit, the amount of suffering you’re experiencing in life is directly related to how much you dislike yourself. If you loved yourself, you would either create more positive experiences, or you would perceive your so-called “negative” situations differently.

“So What?”

Even though self-hatred is one of the more common viruses in the minds of humanity, it’s interesting that no human being can give a good answer as to why they’re so undeserving of love. If you were to look in the mirror again and ask why you dislike yourself, chances are you’ll have trouble coming up with a substantial response. The most common answer usually has something to do with external reality, such as, “I’m fat”, “I’m broke”, “I’m single”, or “I’m unemployed”.

There is really only one effective comeback to any of those complaints, and fortunately it’s a short one. It comes in the form of two little words; “SO WHAT??”

“SO WHAT” if you’re fat, broke, single, or unemployed? Contrary to popular belief, none of these characteristics have anything to do with whether or not you deserve love, acknowledgement, or appreciation. I know a lot of fat, broke, single, and unemployed babies and dogs that are the center of attention. Nobody puts them down for their status and what’s even more beautiful is that they don’t put themselves down either. In fact, EVERY fat, broke, single, and unemployed baby or dog I’ve ever met has lived in celebration of themselves and of their life; a life that was created to be loved.

Learning to Love Yourself: the Source of Genuine Self-Esteem

The source of true self-love and genuine self-esteem is found in knowing who you truly are at your deepest level. It is found in knowing that the definition of you cannot be found in your physical body, financial status, career, or relationships. The authentic you is found in the invisible essence that animates your body and the situations within your life. The authentic you is found within the discovery of your soul.

It is wise to base your self-esteem in the awareness of your soul because it is the only element of you that is eternal and unchanging. Your body, job, relationships, and finances are transient and can be swept out from under you at a moment’s notice. If you put all your eggs in the basket of physical reality, you’ll receive a swift kick in the arse when change arrives on your doorstep, as change always does.

When you acknowledge that the reality of you is a soul expressing in human form, you’ve built your self-esteem on a solid rock that is unchanging. No matter what happens in life, you’ll know that the real you cannot be hurt, harmed, or endangered in any way. You’ll accept that the essence of you is as perfect, whole, and complete as every other soul on this planet, no matter how much money, health, or good fortune they appear to have. With this in mind, you’ll learn to love yourself deeply.

You will know when you have mastered the art of self-love when you discover you are happy no matter what. You’ll stop beating yourself up and enjoy the journey.

Begin today to love, appreciate, and honor yourself as the unique and divine creation that you are. You’ll discover life’s shortcut to happiness, and the secret to your success.

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