Love Yourself for a Healthier Relationship
“Talk to yourself like you would to someone you love.”
– Brené Brown
What does it mean to date your reflection? First, let’s be clear: this isn’t talking about physically dating your own reflection in the mirror.
However, people’s relationships with others are generally an expression of their relationship with themselves. For better or for worse, someone’s self-esteem can affect their relationships with family members, friends, and partners. If you don’t love yourself, or even hate yourself, it’s harder to cultivate healthy dynamics with the people around you. Therefore, it’s incredibly important to spend time developing a good relationship with yourself, learning what is and isn’t important to you, and figuring out what you want and need from each aspect of your life. When you respect and love yourself, you can go so much further.
Set a Good Precedent
“The relationship with yourself sets the tone for every other relationship you have.”
– Robert Holden
Imagine having a relationship with someone you don’t love, who you consider to be seriously flawed or perhaps even worthless. Would this relationship bring happiness to your life? How would it affect your day-to-day existence? Would this be a sustainable dynamic? Now imagine that the person you’re in this relationship with is…you. This is the reality for people who don’t take the time to cultivate a positive relationship with themselves. When you don’t love yourself, when you don’t give yourself the time and energy you give to others, you end up in a situation that simply can’t last.
If you don’t believe that you are worthy of a balanced, healthy, loving relationship — if you don’t love yourself — then you may manifest an insufficient match. In fact, you may not even allow yourself the chance to find the right one. This is the core principle behind the idea of “dating your reflection.” It isn’t about dating someone who is exactly like you in all respects. Rather, it’s about being at the same level emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. Consider it a bit like having a degree in emotional maturity. If your understanding of who you are and what you need is only at a bachelor’s level, you most likely won’t attract someone who is at a master’s level. They’ll be looking for someone who has a similar level of insight and self-awareness to theirs.
To create the life you want to live, it’s important to love yourself, or at least be on good terms with yourself. Self-worth, self-perception, and self-esteem aren’t ugly words or selfish tools. They are necessary for people to ensure that both what they put out into the Universe and what they get back can serve their highest good.
Moving from believing that you’re useless to recognizing your own worth and learning to love yourself is rarely ever a linear progression. More often than not, it’s winding and confusing. However, there is a lot to be learned from such a journey, and once you undergo it, you may just find yourself grateful that you started down a happier path.
Make Time for Yourself
“Self-care is never a selfish act — it is simply good stewardship of the only gift I have, the gift I was put on earth to offer to others.”
– Parker Palmer
People tend to get stuck on the idea that dedicating regular time to your own needs is somehow a form of selfishness. This couldn’t be further from the truth! The clouds need to gather water to rain again, and people aren’t any different. Take all the time you need to ensure that your needs are being met and that you’re remembering to love yourself. This, in turn, will enable you to be there for the people in your life.
“The people we are in relationships with are always a mirror, reflecting our own beliefs, and simultaneously we are mirrors, reflecting their beliefs.”
– Shakti Gawain
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