We are so hard on ourselves. This is not only an individual problem; it’s a Universal one. Somewhere along the line we bought into the belief that we are somehow “less than” when we make foolish choices or mistakes.

Because of that we are also hard on others. On some level it makes us feel better to judge other people’s choices and mistakes. It gives us the illusion of feeling we know better, therefore we are better. This is simply the coping mechanism many have created in order to release some of the pressure we feel within our own lives.

Whether it be judging others or judging ourselves, the bottom line of it all is that we are not loving and accepting ourselves fully and completely.

So how do we begin choosing to love ourselves?
First of all, I strongly believe it boils down to awareness. When we become aware that we are hard on ourselves as well as others, we can begin to choose differently. Secondly, being hard on ourselves didn’t happen overnight…and neither will the journey toward accepting ourselves. Because of the many ways we have learned to not love and accept ourselves, means that we have some work to do in learning how to.

Here are also some concrete steps we can take towards loving and accepting ourselves:

1)Speak up – we need to begin to speak up for ourselves, and let our needs be known. There is a tendency to hope that others can read our mind…but they can’t! Every time we ask for our needs to be met we are loving ourselves a little bit more. This can be in the form of something we need, as well as setting boundaries with others. Whether someone hears you are not, you change your perception of yourself by speaking up for what you need.

2)Laugh about it – each time we feel we make a mistake, we need to be light-hearted about it. We create stories in our mind that lead us to feel shame. By making light of it releases the shame around it. Consciously decide to laugh about the silliness of it versus sinking into the depths of shame.

3)Share it – share the story of your “mistake” with someone you trust. When we stay in our own minds, it often feels bigger than it really is. By sharing it with others we not only realize we probably aren’t the only ones who have felt the same way, but we also release the inner struggle and shame we had around that story. Sharing is having the courage to show your true self…no matter what. Sharing the truth of who you are releases the power the “secrets” have had over you. It brings light to the shame.

4)Feel it – we often feel shame and anger for some of the choices and mistakes we make, and because these are uncomfortable feelings we tend to quickly push them away rather than feel them. Allow yourself to feel what comes up for you. Know that it’s okay to feel that way. Give yourself permission to express it a healthy manner (ie. cry, journal your anger, exercise). Doing this releases the hold it has.

5)Take action – if there are things that you have been wanting to change in your life, by taking action on them the energetic patterns in your life will change. Whether it’s big or small, taking action begins to create ripples of change. Each time we get out of our comfort zone, we feel the power of the love for ourselves.

“Loving yourself is the greatest work you will do in this life. In a sense it is your only work.”
~ Daphne Kingma

Author's Bio: 

Trisha Savoia is founder/owner of Absolute Awareness, and creator of The Integrity Code, and The Soulful Parent Programs. Through her programs, writing, and speaking she uses her skills, experience, and intuition as a mother, teacher, Clinical Hypnotherapist, and Entrepreneur to help guide moms to recover their true selves and their intuition, while at the same time learn how to parent so their children can do the same.