I just got off a call with my best friend and as always, it was a long call. The more we spoke the deeper the conversation became. We started talking about self love and what it means, how it affects the people you attract to your life and your relationships.
Before this conversation, I was sure I that I understood and I that I was practicing self love but I’m not so sure anymore. I was honest with her about this so we started exploring the subject even further.
The eye opening question she asked me was, “Do you love, practice love with yourself, complement, take care and honour yourself as much as you do with Kairo?”
That was intense for me. I tell Kairo I love her everyday. I kiss her more than she wants, I hold her, I sing for her, I pray for her, I dance with her, we take long walks together, my face lights up when I see her, and the list goes on and on.
I am ashamed to say that I cannot remember when I last looked at myself on the mirror and said, “I love you Zinhle”. How often do I look at myself and say “you are beautiful” and mean it? Does my face light up when I see a reflection of myself as I am window shopping? Do I pull out a picture of myself look at it and kiss it because I love myself.
I feel like the idea of self love has been distorted. Wearing the best clothes, driving a beautiful car, wearing make up and all the other external things are great but I do not think they are a full expression of self love. They are just a fraction. A drop in the ocean. Self love is internal. It’s about the internal dialogue you have with yourself everyday.
What do you say to yourself? I had the worst habit of criticizing myself every time I made a mistake. “Gosh, you are so stupid”. That is so unkind, I would never even say that to someone else.
Some people spent most of their time thinking about what other people are doing, looking at their success/failure and judging. Stop giving away so much of your thoughts. Use your thoughts to build yourself. Talk to yourself. Be kind to yourself. Treat yourself the same way you would treat your precious baby.
Before you read this article, what were you thinking about?. Were your thoughts kind to you? Were they an expression of self love?
I believe that the subject of self love is much deeper than what I have said. Loving yourself intensely will need some time. You need to learn and believe that you deserve as much love as you give. You deserve 10 times more that you give.
I want to get to a point where I love myself so completely that I am able to tell when I am denying myself that love. I am currently single and I do not believe that I can attract true and pure love if I have not expressed and felt that alone with myself. How will I know how it feels like if I have not felt it?
We often expect love to come from others. True love is self love. You deserve it. Start practicing it more often. Start having positive conversation with yourself yourself. Write yourself a letter every week. While you are doing your make up, stop, look yourself in the eyes and say, “I love you so much and I am proud of you”.
Set a reminder on your phone right now for a time that will be repeated daily. The reminder should tell you 5 amazing things about yourself. I am setting mine now and it will read:
“Zinhle, I love you so much.
You are beautiful, blessed and kind.
Look at your smile, that is beautiful.
I am so proud of you.
You have the most gorgeous eyes.”