Loving yourself through griefFeb 08, 2024
A key ingredient to navigating life after the loss of a spouse is something that is widely misunderstood and it’s rare that I meet a single person who is good at it.
That key ingredient is self-love.
For many people widowed or not, self-love is often confused with being self-centered or selfish.
To be self-centered is to have a single-minded focus on oneself, needs, desires, preferences and problems.
To be selfish is to lack consideration for others, and instead to be chiefly concerned with one’s own personal profit or pleasure.
Both self-centeredness and selfishness have a negative impact on relationships.
Self-love, on the other hand, is having interest in your own well-being.
Research shows that self-love increases empathy for others and increases resilience.
It has a positive impact on mental health, well-being and relationships.
So, self-centeredness and selfishness negatively impact relationships, but self-love has the opposite effect.
These definitions reinforce the old saying, “You can’t pour from an empty cup.”
Self-love is tough for a lot of people, and it’s even tougher after the loss of a spouse. Because grief shines a spotlight on all that is unresolved, painful or difficult.
And yet, self-love is a key ingredient for healing.
So, it’s important to redefine self-love to what it actually is: an interest in your own well-being, and trust that the better you love yourself, the more that spills over into the relationships that are important to you.
Now more than ever, put yourself on your own priority list. Self-love doesn’t necessarily take a lot of time. It’s in no way indulgent. In fact, it’s more necessary than ever.
Here are a few tips to get you started, and I offer even more in my free webinar. Click here to watch it.
- Monitor your inner dialogue. For many people, it is very critical and unkind. Ask yourself, what would love say?
- Monitor your energy levels and do what charges your batteries, whether it’s getting outdoors, music, silence, solitude, being with the people you love, creative pursuits, or whatever soothes your soul.
- See and celebrate your wins. There's more about that in episode 45 of the Life Reconstructed podcast. Click here to listen.
Because loving yourself better leads to peace. It’s the kind of peace that comes in the form of forgiving yourself for not knowing what you didn’t know, and not doing what you didn’t know to do.
It’s peace that comes from better self-awareness because you’re more in tune with your own needs and you know how to get what you need.
It’s peace that comes from better self-esteem, because you know that you’re 100% worthy.
It’s peace that comes from self-acceptance, because can love yourself now and are always growing and evolving.
It’s peace that comes from silencing the inner critic and becoming your own biggest cheerleader.
You deserve that peace. I want you to experience it.
There’s much more on self-love in my webinar called Loving yourself through grief. I offer 7 simple and practical strategies to love yourself better. Watch it by clicking here.
Learn more about Life Reconstructed.
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