“Seeking love keeps you from the awareness that you already have it—that you are it.” ― Byron Katie
There’s this misunderstanding where the love that we look for comes from.
We look for love in another person, in a perfect relationship and in the acceptance of other people. When it comes to self-love we often have this idea that we need to practice it, in order to love ourselves more.
In media, popular blogs and magazines we are given these to-do lists and tips to practice self-love. These tips might be anything from buying flowers, surrounding ourselves with loving people and ending toxic relationships to positive affirmations and learning to say “no”.
While these might be wonderful things, do they really guarantee the feeling of love that we look for? Like one of the women on my coaching call said “how much more do we need to practice to be able to love ourselves?”
While people who have already found their self-love might naturally enjoy doing some of these things, they don’t necessary increase the level of love we have for ourselves in any way.
One of the biggest things for me to learn how to step into the stream of self-love was to realize that we can never find love in the outer form.
It is not about practice, it’s about understanding
When we begin to see where the love that we look for comes from, it becomes easy for us to find it. It’s not about finding self-love outside of us, it’s about becoming aware of it.
There’s nothing we need to do to experience more self-love. Love is our natural state of being.
When we have a calm mind and become more present we automatically experience more of that love.
Love is a feeling created inside us and when we become present we naturally connect more with that feeling. We become more aware of love and naturally have warmer feelings towards ourselves and other people.
What stops us from experiencing love
The only thing that stops us from experiencing our natural state of being is getting caught up in our thinking. When we get into our heads we experience our own limiting thinking instead of experiencing the present moment.
Any unloving thought like “I’m not good enough” or that “I need to love myself more in order to do well in life” we might accept without questioning them. If we don’t recognize that we are only experiencing a thought we might get stuck in our thinking and begin to seek love outside of ourselves.
When the only direction we really need to look is within.
When we begin to recognize love as our natural state of being, it becomes easier for us to become aware of it. We don’t get lost into our thinking so easily because we recognize that an unloving thought is a creation of our own imagination.
When we recognize that we have been caught up in our thinking our mind begins to calm down. We fall back into the present moment where we automatically experience more self-love.
Self-love within us
It’s natural that we don’t feel loving all the time— We all get caught up in our thinking. Instead of thinking that it’s a problem we can remember that there’s nothing we need to do to return back to love.
If I feel like I’m not appreciating myself enough, I know that I’m just caught up in my thinking and as soon as my thinking quiets down, I feel differently again.
Love is something that we experience when we are in the moment and have less on our minds. The only thing stopping us from experiencing it, is taking our stressful thoughts too seriously.
Searching something that is already within us keeps us from the awareness that we already have it. The less thinking we create, the more our mind quiets down and the more aware of that love we can be.
So next time when we read on a magazine or hear someone saying how we need to do something in order to love ourselves more, maybe we can use these tips, not as a cure, but as a celebration of love.