In Mark 12: 31, Jesus gives the second of the great commandments “and you shall love your neighbor as yourself”. People often misquote this commandment, saying we must love others more than ourselves, but nothing could be further from the truth. The pinnacle of abundant living is being able to pour into yourself as much as you can pour into others. If you love people more than you love yourself, you will come up short all the time. Self-love is important; it is what leads us to that place of finding happiness and security. When you are confident about whom you are and the effect you have on the world, it makes loving someone else not an arduous task, but a fulfilling experience. Here are some tips you can practice daily to help you achieve self-love:
Remember, you can’t control the outcome of every situation. One of Murphy’s laws says, “Whatever will go wrong, will go wrong”. We frequently lose our faculties, believing we must be in control of everything in our space. When things don’t turn out the way we planned, we blame ourselves for all the ills in the world, past, present, and future. Remind yourself daily that you are only human and even with the best crystal ball; you cannot predict the outcome of everything. Approach every situation, understanding you cannot fulfill every request. Even with your best effort, somebody will be disappointed with your ability to meet a need. Stop trying to control the outcome of every situation and focus on doing what you can with the resources available to the best of your ability.
Remember to take care of yourself. This is especially for the ladies’ wives, mothers, aunts, and grandmothers. Caring for others is a natural part of the psyche of women, which often causes them to behave like a runaway freight train in taking care of themselves. Remember this: you are only useful to others to the degree you are useful to yourself. It is not selfish to look after you; you are not the worst person in the world to take some alone time to rejuvenate. Even Jesus saw it necessary to seek solitude Luke 5: 16. Men, women, and children need time to reflect, meditate, plan, or just get lost in their own thoughts. Understand this, even the energizer bunny will eventually run out of batteries. If we don’t take the time for self-care one day, we will eventually run down or burn out.
Remember to check in regularly with your emotions. In this fast-paced world, your emotions will systematically run afoul of the laws of what makes sense. Emotions can be deceptive and too many people wear their negative emotions on their sleeves like a batch of honor. Regularly check your feelings to determine if they are warranted in the current situation. Also, don’t discount or lie about how you feel because it makes others uncomfortable. Don’t project your feelings unto others and expect them to just go along with you. Every day, go to your quiet place and have that important talk with yourself about how you are feeling. If you are honest with how you are feeling, you are in a much better place to help your neighbor.
Remember, gratitude is an attitude. The ability to help someone is a gift from God. Never allow the good you do to become a task you hate. A spirit of gratitude will keep you going even when times get difficult. If you can only do small things, do them until you can do greater things, but do them knowing that small things also come from the storehouse of God of great things. Don’t watch what others are doing, do what you can, when you can, and put your heart and soul into it Luke 16: 10. Gratitude is contagious. Do things with a thankful heart and watch your neighbor do the same and eventually, there will be a chain reaction.
Remember to live in the moment. Nothing you are doing now is more important than being alive for the long haul. Take time out of your busy schedule to live life. Don’t buy the lie that you have enough time to do all the things you want when you have achieved your goals. Life happens in real-time, and it is very unpredictable. The only time you have control over is the time you have now. Embrace, appreciate it, share it and celebrate it. You are only passing this way once. Stop often and breathe, drink in the scenes around you and just let yourself live for a moment. It is a wonderful feeling to know that you are a part of this great universe. Make sure you leave an impression that will last.
Self-love is important to healthy and abundant living. Start changing things in your life today that will help you live the life you deserve. Nothing happens without deliberate action. You owe it to yourself to feel good about being your skin before you can be of service to someone in need of your help. Love yourself and loving others will be second nature.