“Life’s challenges are not supposed to paralyze you, they’re supposed to help you discover who you are.”-Bernice Johnson Reagon
When I began to realize many people in committed relationships find it challenging to be honest and authentic with their partners, I began to question my clients to understand what was happening. I discovered that vulnerability and transparency, two crucial components of finding self-love and true intimacy, were the biggest challenges.
People disclosed that they feared being ridiculed or rejected if they were seen by the ones they loved. What came from that finding was my first book, The Honey Jar: Tips and Tools For Couples, which includes my formula for finding self-love.
Before we can experience a true and loving relationship, we must accept ourselves just the way we are, and self-acceptance/self-love is a challenge in and of itself – it’s like walking a labyrinth.
The Formula to Finding Self-Love
Courage + Faith + Trust + Honesty = Self Love
Courage to Face Your Fears
Self-love requires courage. It takes courage to be yourself, allowing your mate to see you. That can’t really happen if you’re not authentic. When you’re afraid that your partner may not feel the same way about you, once they learn your other facets, then consider yourself lucky. That person isn’t your “Person.”
Faith in a Higher Power
Did you know that every time you conspire negative feelings about yourselves or your capabilities, you deny there’s an Infinite Intelligence, (God, Source, The Universe) that created us, and breathes us each day? Although you can’t see it, it’s here and it has your back, and that is what we have faith in. Our higher power. The quote below is from The Honey Jar, stated by one of my former students.
“Faith can hold us together and tear us apart. The day I found faith within myself was the day I gave up. I gave up trying to be someone I wasn’t, trying so hard to please others, and more over, I gave up on the belief that something was wrong with me.”
Trust in Yourself
Once you have faith, there’s trust. Trust and faith go hand in hand, as they are twin components operating on different planes. Trust is on a human, horizontal level of emotions, and feelings. It works in this dimension, we trust in people or things. We trust in our faith as we navigate the world on our journey. You’ve got to trust that you’re good enough.
Being Honest with Yourself
Honesty in all relationships is the foundation of any relationship, especially the one you have with yourself. Until you can lay all your cards on the table, and look yourself in the eye when it’s just you and You, there’s work that must be done.
“Self -love requires you to be honest about your current choices and thought patterns and undertake new practices that reflect self-worth.” -Caroline Kirk
Courage to face your fears, faith in a higher power, trust in yourself, and the ability to be honest with yourself is the formula that will take you to the center of the labyrinth, where you’ll begin to find self-love.