On Body Image and Radical Self Love

Monday Morning Rambling Spirituality

I have been reminded lately about how good I am at giving other people grace to not be perfect. I am constantly finding ways to excuse negative behavior in others and to give them love in spite of their behavior. “She grew up in an abusive household,” or “He struggles with self-confidence,” or “They are cursed with a sense of entitlement because of how they were raised.” And for awhile I was chastising myself for not being able to do the same thing internally. Why am I so hard on myself when I allow others to be imperfect in much more catastrophic ways? Why don’t I look at my own history and give myself room to falter and still deserve love?

But then this morning, during my 5 minutes of meditation (I KNOW. FIVE WHOLE MINUTES. STEP BACK AND BE AMAZED!), that I don’t think that’s the way to be.

I think the truth is, that I need to frame love towards myself as unconditional. Less like the grace I give those who have wronged me, and more like the love I feel towards my kids which exists in abundance even when they’re being assholes. I don’t justify the love by excusing their behavior…it just exists.

I think I need to quit saying to myself, “It’s okay that you keep dropping balls, you have a lot on your plate. Be kind to yourself.” And instead I need to say, “It’s okay you keep dropping balls because you are human, you are you, and you deserve love and kindness.”

I think I have been stuck in this framework of building excuses for my mistakes instead of just (and let me get a little spiritual here) sitting in the moment and offering myself love and grace and forgiveness because I am just a small part of a bigger universe of energy and if I just keep responding to myself in love, it could really create a bigger and better insulation around me to help me withstand some of the earthquakes of negativity that happen around me.

I’m not sure if I’m making sense, or even if I’m getting my point across, sometimes it’s hard to be vague. I’m just really hard on myself all the time. I beat myself up constantly and not in any productive ways because my focus is such shit lately. I’ll be like, “Damnit Kim for not getting to that thing last week! You’re a mess!” but will I get around to doing that thing this week? NO. Because my focus has been nonexistent. (My psychiatrist and I are working on that.) And then I’ll beat myself up about it again. My instinct is to respond to myself by reminding myself of the things going on that keep my life insane. But I am just thinking that maybe I need to quit saying to myself, “It’s okay that you messed up then because you’re under a lot of stress,” and instead just say to myself, “I love you, I love you, I love you.”

I think I need to start just pushing unconditional love inward. If there’s a good way to do that. To not forgive myself by reminding myself of all of the stress I’m under, but instead to just offer myself love because there’s no need for forgiveness. Life happens and the world is hard enough without me adding negativity to that. If I could just keep bolstering myself with self-love, unconditional self-love, then maybe that would be a better approach? Instead of constantly saying, “You’re a good Mom, a good daughter, a good wife, a good sister,” when I’m feeling down on myself…maybe I just say: You deserve love because you are a child of this universe and we all deserve love.

4 thoughts on “Monday Morning Rambling Spirituality”

  1. This made me cry.
    It is SO true. You deserve that love with NO effort. NO production. No product. No anything.

    I am a special education teacher and recently I had this sudden vision of some of my students who in the eyes of this world are severely impaired. Who do not produce any tangible product. Who do not “get things done” in a day. And how I see them as valuable, worthy, contributing members of this universe with my whole heart. Because they ARE.
    Why not me?
    Hugs to you!

  2. This one has stuck with me for a few days enough so I am leaving a comment.
    I think that even with the re-framing language “keep dropping balls” is still the emphasis.
    My brain still tells myself that I am failing and has a a hard time pushing past that.
    We are so hard on ourselves.
    I see your struggle.
    You are absolutely worthy of love and kindness!

  3. “You deserve love because you are a child of this universe and we all deserve love.” So true. <3

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