The Difference Between Feelin' Yourself and Loving Yourself
There’s no shame in feelin’ yourself. In fact, you can LOVE yourself and FEEL yourself at the same time. I seriously recommend it, queue a sassy Beyonce song and you’re all set for the best day of your life. However, there is so much depth and presence in loving yourself that feelin’ yourself just doesn’t quite accomplish. To separate them in a broad sense, I’d say feelin’ yourself is the more superficial “what’s on the outside” version of loving yourself. It’s the fleeting feeling versus that lasting, rich and juicy L-O-V-E.
When you feel yourself, you wake up in the morning and need a mirror to remind you of how beautiful you are. But when you love yourself, you wake up with an instant smile on your face and gratification that you have another day to live. Your hair might be disheveled and your breath probably wreaks, but damnit you’re beautiful!
Loving yourself does not come easy and I am quite new to this higher consciousness so I still have a ways to go, but I can say that it is a deep understanding and acceptance of who you are. There’s a light and lightness in your body that shines down on you as if you are invincible. Are you invincible? Probably not, shit happens, but you know yourself and are true to yourself.
Months ago, I’d use the term “feelin’ myself” after I got my hair done and everyone noticed. This feeling was fueled from others opinions rather than my own, and I probably wouldn’t have dug the new ‘do as much if no one complimented it. If I had known what self-love was at the time, I wouldn’t have needed a narcissistic stamp of approval. It’s important to realize that self-love comes from within and no one will ever be able to achieve this for you.
How To Practice Self-Love
Practicing self-love can be as easy as setting time for yourself to read a good book or take a long bath. It’s not about buying a new pair of shoes or new lipstick - although shopping does feel good within the act - rather, it is about providing yourself with nourishment and having the feel good tingles start from the inside-out. When we nourish our physical, mental and spiritual self, we can connect on a deeper level to our thoughts and our needs. I love to treat myself to a nice meal with fresh veggies and protein from the farmers market. One, it gives me a sense of connection to community because I am supporting our local farms and two, I feel super healthy because I am avoiding processed junk. Drinking a warm cup of tea and cherishing every sip is also a favorite treat of mine.
Yoga or meditation is another way to learn the nuances of your body while connecting with yourself on a deeper level. Giving yourself the treat of an hour of yoga or even thirty minutes of meditation allows you to focus on your breath and on your body, ultimately getting you closer to this universal understanding of yourself and your physical being.
Another way I’ve been practicing self-love lately is by being more aware and present. I encourage everyone to read The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle if you haven’t already. The overarching message is resounding and with implementation can leave you present and less anxious or stressed.
By recognizing thoughts and feelings as they come up, you get to know yourself better. For example, I was at a friend’s house who recently redecorated and all I could think about was going to Home Goods once I left. The second I realized I was thinking about wanting to spend money, I was like “Wait a minute, I don’t actually want to buy anything new!” This recognition of self is a way of learning ourselves, our patterns and our behaviors. We can weed out the bad things to make room for the good when we’re more aware of what we deem “bad.”
Work Towards Loving Yourself
The only person you’re stuck with for life is yourself and the great thing about that is if you don’t like your current state of being, you have the power to change! The most important relationship you’ll ever have is with yourself so it’s so essential to seek happiness from within rather than from outside sources. Loving yourself is the fuel and foundation of living a happy life and when you really love yourself, it’s absolutely magical.