Even on the most beautiful of days, the world may seem like it’s against us. Every one of us experiences this sometimes- feeling drained and emotionally exhausted. While it might be tempting to search for an outside source to alleviate these negative feelings, the most powerful tool is actually inside of us.
Loving others is an immense power that we hold as humans. Even at our lowest, if a struggling child came to us seeking help we would be naturally inclined to provide assistance, attention and love, even though we had no repayment in mind. However, when it comes to directing love to ourselves, many of us feel ashamed and guarded, labeling ourselves as “selfish”. We see ourselves as insatiable weaklings and mooches. Loving ourselves is not selfish, despite what our shame may sometimes indicate. Selfishness implies only caring for the self, even at the expense of others. Many of us would agree that children should love themselves more so than showing love to others, so why not approach our thoughts about the self the same way? After all- having self love as well as love for others takes some of the burden off of other people and external things to make us happy.
Try this simple exercise to harness energy from your own power of love:
Imagine yourself from an outside perspective, as if you were a friend of yours. How would you feel towards your emotionally drained friend? Would you sympathize and offer encouragement? Envision the love that you would offer yourself and then feel that love that you’d be sending your friend (you). Can you be open to it? You may notice it feels as good as love from someone else, or maybe even better! It is love from a person that knows you best.
Adapting to giving yourself love when you are in need may re-energize you. It can feed the need for love, and remove some of the burden off of others to fill that need. It may enable us to truly enjoy our relationships, rather than use them to satisfy emotional needs. In the process, it can also give us the energy to help others.