When I began to allow in the possibility that there might, after all, be something in all this loving myself stuff, I began to notice more and more parts of my life that weren’t in tune with the real me, hidden away under all those layers. But the more I noticed, the more tender, raw and exposed I felt. I started to feel so uncomfortable with the way I’d been living as not myself, but I had no idea what to do about it. Nurturing myself, being more loving, and more consistent, sounded great in principle but so far away that I couldn’t understand what practical steps I needed to take to get back to being and loving myself again.
How does one begin to let that tired and fake wallpaper fall away to expose the beautiful real person, including those ‘cracks’ that you’ve been trying so hard for so long to paper over? I had no idea. I blamed other people. I felt stuck. I kept thinking about how great I’d feel if only this, that and the other were different. I felt disconnected and not strong enough to make any significant changes to the way I was living. I wanted the practitioner to tell me what to do.
After I’d picked myself up from wallowing on the floor, I began to try not to think my way through things, but to feel it. Thinking, my cherished number one pastime, had led me nowhere except the repeat button on a broken CD player, playing out the same patterns and cycles but never moving on to the next song, let alone a different album.
As I tried to feel what to do, the old patterns kicked in – I thought “I know how to fix this. I’ll just book myself in for a few healing sessions, go on a detox and voila! – life sorted and bursting with love and low-fat hummus forevermore. Can’t wait to get started! Healing will be just like waxing my legs: I’ll just get the pain over with and have another session every time the hairy mess grows back”.
As I worked on ‘loving myself stuff’ I began to try a different way: not rushing in like some kind of panicked person mopping up a disaster, not trying to fix everything and everyone in sight, not stage-managing the situation, but just noticing. That’s it. Oh, and dropping that whole self-judgment/loathing thing. That little thing.
I cut down on the drinking (a bit) and stopped pushing myself all the time. After all, I didn’t want to give myself some kind of ‘weird diet’ and another excuse for my perfection-striving brain to go into overdrive.
Instead of prescribing myself some kind of healing boot-camp, I decided to try to just stop and listen to my body more often. What changes might take place within and around me, if I start truly committing to loving myself and looking after myself?
This is what I’ve learned so far:
- It starts with me. Not in a narcissistic way, but in a way that recognises that I need to look after myself before I can be of any use to the rest of the world.
- Being honest. This also means asking for what I want and need instead of pretending “I’m so flexible, lucky me for having no needs, and being so ‘un-needy!”
- It’s not a quick leg-waxing fix, but about building a long-term connection and commitment to myself. Asking myself if what I am doing is really supporting me, listening to my body and then responding to it.
- Calling myself out: am I really going to accept this continuous burying of my feelings and not saying aloud what I can feel? Or am I going to take this opportunity to accept, instead of deny, that this is what I’m feeling, and start what will feel like a risky but potentially rewarding and loving conversation and deeper connection?
The benefits of this loving myself approach so far have been interesting:
- All the money I’ve saved on not flying to India to find myself.
- A lighter bookshelf now that they aren’t groaning with the weight of self-improvement manuals.
- Not having to quit my job, dump my relationship and abandon my entire life to live in a cave.
- Closer relationships.
- Having fun, actually allowing myself to feel tender and delicate but strong and powerful.
- Feeling myself again. What a relief!
I also realised that I don’t need to wait for stillness and space to start making changes and be more loving towards myself. What if, underneath everything else and deeper within myself, I already know how I want to live and the love that I am? What changes and choices can I make to the way I’m living now to better support me and how I want to live from now on? And how would I feel if I actually accepted, as part of my development, ALL the choices I’ve made so far, even the ones I’ve judged as ‘bad’?
Inspired by the teachings of Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine.
By Bryony, London, UK
430 thoughts on “Loving Myself and My Choices”
Esoteric healing sessions are amazing, but it is how we implement what we have felt and understood in the session that is the key to turning a page and changing the quality in each cycle. The healing sessions then truly applied become a marker of growth and progress.
Feeling the body, I mean really stopping to feel all we are feeling and all we are feeling within the body, is not that easy when we have had a habit of thinking our way through life. Ironically, feeling is very simple to do, just not easy when we allow the mind to take over and control things. The mind is keen to keep us in function, whilst the heart is that crucial part of us that brings us back to the being and the feelings and the honesty of what is needed next.
This stopping and listening to yourself is so so important and you discovery what is supportive and what isn’t. You know once I spent thousands of pounds going on a pilgrimage to India, only to find my exisiting life was still waiting for me when I landed back in Australia. All I had done was go on an expensive illusionary holiday/trip.
Within all us we have the ability to stop and make those loving steps. They are at your doorstep, and it is a matter of choice as to which way you go. Loving yourself is the first step towards this and being consistent with it, the rest will follow.
Building a connection with our body and observing how we live, noticing how every choice affects the body are key steps in becoming more aware and more loving, ‘It’s not a quick leg-waxing fix, but about building a long-term connection and commitment to myself. Asking myself if what I am doing is really supporting me, listening to my body and then responding to it.’
That building connection to our body is so important, it is the exact thing we need to answering to all our woes and illnesses. That’s where our healing first begins…
A beautiful sharing of your unfoldment that is inspiring for others.
I’ve recently been accepting exactly where I am at, particularly when I am not doing well, it brings such an ease and simplicity to accept and work with what’s happening, and not add another layer of distress by thinking “I should not be like this…”
Could it be we also get stuck on what is good and loose sight of Truth as bad seems to take the flack? As True Responsibility delivers us into the wisdom of knowing we are nothing less than a divine vessel, and life become our learning so we can have expansion, so good and bad are simple learning exercises to expand and not react.
Through learning to love myself, I am learning a different way of doing thing – one that does not come with a how-to or a goal and it is impossible to be making ‘mistakes’ as I knew it (i.e. almost criminal), and it is a beautiful process of accepting and surrendering.
Loving ourselves definitely includes accepting, and no self-judgement, ‘ I worked on ‘loving myself stuff’ I began to try a different way: not rushing in like some kind of panicked person mopping up a disaster, not trying to fix everything and everyone in sight, not stage-managing the situation, but just noticing. That’s it. Oh, and dropping that whole self-judgment/loathing thing. That little thing.’
Loving ourselves and taking responsibility can be quite simple and does lighten the feeling within the body. It also highlights the lie we have agreed to live up to and the enormity of that lie.
I had no idea how to love myself, we are not taught any of this as children in fact quite the opposite.
For me the biggest step to self love was first to forgive myself and at the same time relearn to trust what I knew to be true again.
Allowing oneself to acknowledge how one’s body feels and to then respond with honesty to the feeling and not how one thinks one should respond is to regain truth.
“What if, underneath everything else and deeper within myself, I already know how I want to live and the love that I am?” Definitely a question to ask ourselves at least once, and for me a question that I know have the answer to – and that is, yes, I had always known that there was another way to live, I just had no idea of how to access what I felt to be true. That was until I met Serge Benhayon and finally had the truth of life confirmed
We are humans and we are not perfect and we all make mistakes and do and say things that later we regret. If we allowed ourselves to be open to question why we did something we may get to see that there is a certain pattern that kicks in automatically. When we can understand there is a pattern we can start to unpick the pattern and in the unpicking comes the healing.
We are forever students, always learning, becoming more aware, and discarding behaviours and patterns that are not loving.
I love the humour in your blog! How it debunks the craziness we buy into when we want or know we need to bring change into our lives! We really don’t have to walk away from everything, what we do need to consider is how everything we have committed ourselves to feels in our body and if it drains us or not. That way we can choose afresh whether we want to commit to it or not.
I agree Lucy, I really enjoyed the humour in this blog, it makes it so much more relatable and allows me to be more accepting of what’s being shown to me in my own life to look at.
Yes feeling ourselves again is a matter of letting go of what we have accumulated that is not us rather than putting on more layers that we think we ought to have or be.
‘I also realised that I don’t need to wait for stillness and space to start making changes and be more loving towards myself.’ It is all in our own hands from the start, waiting for anything has never worked and will never work, we are the ones we are waiting for.
“Being honest. This also means asking for what I want and need instead of pretending “I’m so flexible, lucky me for having no needs, and being so ‘un-needy!”” I love this. Being honest is often first seen as admitting all our wrongs but what if it is also about feeling that we are in fact amazing, deserve love and care and yes also need support at times and are not the ‘I can do it all” persons we thought ourselves to be.
I love your humorous way to reflect upon your life, you show that there is much to appreciate and that unraveling one’s own drama can be delightful and fun.
Yes, the humour brings in a lightness, it is lovely, ‘Thinking, my cherished number one pastime, had led me nowhere except the repeat button on a broken CD player, playing out the same patterns and cycles but never moving on to the next song, let alone a different album.’
I had a laugh about your lighter bookshelf now that you no longer have the self help books on it, as I too had hundreds of self-help and New Age books and it was a great feeling to come to when I could let these go as I began to develop self-love for myself.
The lack of an image of how to move to get to a deeper place within ourselves may at times be paralyzing. It may stop us even before we move. This is part of the process of discovering that what is needed lies inside you but you have to relate to yourself in a different way to access it.
So true- when we try to think our way to a connection with our body, we’re even more disconnected from it. The only way to access the qualities we hold within is through building a connection to our body, observing how we live and how every choice affects the body, and slowly making different choices. When we start to pay more attention to what and how we feel, the changes we need to make become more starkly felt and obvious.
So light and unimposing approach beautifully expressed, Bryony. Deepening one’s truthfulness, honest and transparency are key.
What a beautiful, fun, and joyous expression of the path back to love. I could really relate to placing conditions on life, “I kept thinking about how great I’d feel if only this, that and the other were different.” It’s a great reminder for me today that love, stillness and joy don’t need any outer box in life ticked first, they are there waiting for me to connect to experience within myself and express in life unconditionally.
Love it Melinda – how we are on the inside in terms of our connection to our being and our essence is really what determines how we will then experience and handle things on the outside.
I know so well that not knowing what to do, feeling stuck kind of place. But it is just like I am saying I want love but refusing to surrender to it. We actually do know, but we are so skilled at doing the exact opposite to the point we fool ourselves that we know nothing.
I love your practical approach to life, I think the concept of self love can come across as a little airy fairy sometimes but you’ve made it super easy with these tenants – the philosophy of just be honest and take it a day at a time and begin with the little things makes it very simple – it takes time to build but it’s a rich and amazing process of discovering more and more who you are.
It’s interesting that there is a perception that you are narcissistic or selfish when you are being self-loving to yourself, the world needs to see people who are living their life with true self-care and self-love as it is key to greater health and vitality.
Yes, when we try to push on through and just do ‘whatever it takes’ to get something done, we disconnect from our bodies in the process. Big deal, we might think, but in that disconnection we choose not to feel the consequences of our choices and the impact they have on our bodies, to not truly know ourselves and connect to what is needed next. The ripple effect of our choices is often more far reaching than we think it is.
The more I listen to my body the less sense the mind makes.
As we are humans with human imperfections we are going to make mistakes and choices that are not so supportive of us or maybe even others but the trick is to just learn from them – don’t put ourselves down or berate ourselves, just learn.
“I also realised that I don’t need to wait for stillness and space to start making changes and be more loving towards myself.” This is a beautiful realisation, that we do not have to wait for anything but can start now.
Yes.. no matter how off track we’ve been, or diversions we’ve taken, every moment holds the potential for a new beginning.. starting again, with a greater commitment to love every part of the process and to feel the bigger picture and purpose, than ever before.
What a joy to read Bryony, thank you for sharing all about this loving yourself stuff.
Behind the layers there is only beauty; an amazing one,
Yes, there is so much beauty in every single one of us and no outer layer can in fact hide that we can only decide not to see / show it.
“Having fun, actually allowing myself to feel tender and delicate but strong and powerful.” A commitment to being all the love that you are is no weird recipe for a way to live.
So great to read this again, thank you Bryony! This is so true “I already know how I want to live and the love that I am”. This is what restores the simplicity to the ‘whole self love thing’, thanks for the great reminders and for the opportunity to laugh at the brilliant and very gorgeous way you express things.
What if the love within me already knew the next steps in life? What does that feel like? Hmmm..
It is interesting to observe that when we initiate loving momentums we then become acutely aware of the unloving momentums we have created and been living in, which no longer fit or feel true and in fact now feel harmful or abusive. Our bodies are attuned the movements of love and the more we move with love the more we become aware of what is not love, and has no further place in our lives.
Yes.. this is my experience – that the move lovingly I live my life – the more loving choices I make – I start to feel that love within my body so that anything that’s not of that same quality really stands out and feels awful, and the less I want to make choices that are unsupportive and harmful. The harmful and abusive choices start to fall away by themselves as they become less enticing options, and it becomes ever- clearer that nothing can match the feelings and known qualities of gentleness and deep love that we all hold within.
The last paragraph feels like a very beautiful way to start a stocktake on life.
I loved reading this blog in its lighthearted and honest style. It brings me back to the point that we can never exhaust approaching any situation from the basis of how our bodies feel and understand life.
The benefits of loving yourself first are huge as you point out, ‘The benefits of this loving myself approach so far have been interesting:
All the money I’ve saved on not flying to India to find myself.
A lighter bookshelf now that they aren’t groaning with the weight of self-improvement manuals.
Not having to quit my job, dump my relationship and abandon my entire life to live in a cave.
Having fun, actually allowing myself to feel tender and delicate but strong and powerful.
Feeling myself again. What a relief!’ And I am sure you have found more benefits since writing this blog.
Beautiful sharing Bryony, it really does start with loving ourselves first, I have just posted a blog on that, http://www.lorrainewellman.com/blog/the-first-relationship incase anyone is interested.
“It starts with me”, how true your words. Bryony I loved the humor in your blog, pointing our the honesty within it all. How easy it is to say just be yourself, when I feel being myself is so not myself at this point in time. However I await the real feeling of actually being myself in every aspect of my daily life.
Yes it start with me!
I enjoyed dating myself and actually asking myself what I liked and what I didn’t like. I got to feel what I valued and where I wanted to put my energy. I highly recommend it! It really does start right here with ourselves.
Bryony I really loved, this, I had some laugh out loud moments as your humour is very relatable. It’s great timing for me to read this as I have recently been caught in my mind through pictures and ideals of how life “should” be, and as a result my body was not being listened to. Now that I have the awareness I realise that my body was communicating that there was an issue, but I’m still used to disregarding it in my drive to meet an outcome. How “right” the mind feels in its follies, despite the body communicating the harm of such activities.
You make a great point Bryony we know what to do and fully equipped in each moment to do what is needed. When things are hard and feel like a mountain it is that worth to break that old momentum into the focus of the smaller moments and the simplicity of just the one task and completing with care and quality of one small task at a time.
Super-great blog, Bryony, spot-on and a nicely dry sense of humour to boot : )) Wow, and I wish I’d read it before I started on my numerous (and costly) healing and spiritual boot-camps! Finding Universal Medicine and the simple truths presented therein have done what all those fruitless investigations could not – returned me to me.
Yes, I remember the early days of returning to starting loving myself, and wondering what this would look like- wanting someone to tell me what to do, haha, ‘I couldn’t understand what practical steps I needed to take to get back to being and loving myself again.’ Seems crazy, but many have been puzzled by this.
I love the freshness in which you write and see life, and the practicality you allow yourself to live life with.
Gorgeous sharing – real, raw and honest – love it. You give us the understanding of why ‘fixing’ doesnt work, and what is actually a loving support to do. For me which very much supports me is doing the Esoteric Yoga, that allows me to feel my body instead of being all the time in my mind. From here I then have a recipient point in my day, of then where to draw my energy from. A connection with me (my whole) body instead of just a part (my mind). And trust me , it is worth doing, as it brings your days to a whole more quality of energy.
Feelings of being “disconnected” are normal when we live with not being focused on the way we express and move, and by being focused we should be with what ever we are doing while we are doing it. This sounds easy but in absolute honesty it takes a lot of practice to bring a level of dedication to the true purpose of being connected. So what are we talking about when we say connection or disconnection? Could it be that our focus on connection starts with our breath? As breath is the movement that starts out the rest of the ways we move, so the way we breathe sets the tone for every other movement there after. Inspired by the Gentle Breath Meditation as presented by Serge Benhayon. For more on the GENTLE BREATH MEDITATION go to;
Having attended many spiritual practises and spent a shed load of money, never was self care, let alone self love ever mentioned as being important or even slightly considered. It was all based on finding solutions without any true evolution.
In my experience Julie of the spiritual New Age many of the practises led me to being even more disconnected to my body and unable to cope with the practicalities of life, and I felt further removed from dealing with the difficulties life and relationships presented. Unbelievably, there was never a mention of self care and the only practices that claimed to be “self love” I came across were to change beliefs about the self, but there was no reconnection back to the love within. It was just more thinking.
Melinda, I would have to say the same. I became more withdrawn from people, and life, as the more I meditated the less committed to life I became, and looking at it from where I am now, I would say depressed. I attended many different types of modalities but soon realised that what I was searching for would not be found within these practises. I would now say that since attending the Universal Medicine presentations, retreats and workshops, that I have a commitment to life that I have never had before, and that there is a huge difference to what is being taught within the spiritual new age arena.
I too have a much lighter bookshelf and have saved a shed load of money on not going off to find myself on endless meditation and yoga retreats, and I’m actually enjoying the same job that I left believing that I hated it and I would never return. There are certainly lots of plus points to truly committing to loving and taking care of myself.
Self-love has not a narcissistic bone in it. Self-love requires a deep honouring and love of self, so the beauty of who you are can be shared with the world.
I like how you write just as you mean it, and that it is so clear, raw and straightforward. Knowing what you express and not holding back on how it comes out. I find this very inspiring as I have been used all my life to conform my speech, way of acting, behavior, voice, sound, body posture and out based on what others wanted to see or handle (maximum).
I can tell from +- 20 years of experience. It is exhausting, I do not recommend it to anyone. And so, I prefer now to speak from the heart, straight away and not manipulate anything that I say – as it needs to come out as to how it was received in the first place. I am learning this now, and it is brilliant and very freeing!
This is great Danna, maybe there is a book in explaining how living from the heart how life can change at any age?
I love that Greg.. Yes very true. Will ponder on that. Thank you
Inspired I am for sure !
An inspiring inspiration for so many for sure!!!
Loved reading your blog Bryony, choosing to make more self-loving choices, and actually allowing yourself to love yourself, sounds crazy that we have to change our choices in order to love ourselves because it really is the most natural thing to do, yet we bury ourselves in protection and in doing so, we stop being the natural love that we are.
To me articles like this are poetic in their own way. This is a completely different spin on what life offers us, “What if, underneath everything else and deeper within myself, I already know how I want to live and the love that I am?” We have walked so far away from this that some would even deny it exists or brush it off as some type of confusing rubbish. What is being said is true and the fact we already know is littered through our past. We choose not to see things like this because of how we choose to move in the world. The world takes our focus to other things, deliberately so we don’t see the movements we make which then either supports us to see deeper or steps us back onto the merry go round. Whatever life is throwing at us holding true to the feeling that under that is more you brings forward what is needed to get there or more, exposes what is in the way.
Well said Ray. We are already everything we need to be, we have found ourselves in the tricky position of having to admit that we have buried under layers and layers of “I must do better” and or “if only I had…”