Friday, February 14, 2014

Challenge #6: Love Yourself

With Valentine's Day here, I'm sure we've all seen the commercials for things you can buy to show someone you love them.  Buy your wife this sparkly diamond pendant from Big Name Chain Jeweler and let her know how much you love her.  Order now these lovely dozen roses off this florist's website and get a discount rather than paying through to nose at your local florist on the 14th.  Ladies, buy this little bit of silk and colored lace, wear it, and let your man know how much you love him.  Buy these overpriced chocolates to let the special person in your life know how much you love them.  Make your reservations now at Le Pricey Ristorante for a steak dinner that weighs more than your man's clunky winter boots, and he'll love you forever.  Or, alternately, take your woman to Le Pricey Ristorante and get her drunk on overpriced wine and, well. . . .you can fill in the blank with your own fantasy.

We get it.  Valentine's Day means loving someone and showing it either by giving them a material item, or providing a service for them. Jewelery.  Flowers.  Candy.  Steak.  Alcohol.  Sexy apparel.  Love, love, love.

But what about you?  What if you don't have a person in your life who will buy you any of those things?  Or maybe you have a person who would love to buy you gifts if they could, but the money just isn't there right now.  Or maybe you have a person, but they just aren't a demonstrative romantic.

Often, that leaves us feeling bad.  Unloved.  We know better (or maybe we don't), but we still feel that somehow we are less worthy than those around us sporting gifts in red or pink wrappers this mid-February day.

So, this week's challenge is to Love Yourself.

If you don't, who will?  Do something nice for yourself.  It doesn't have to require spending money (but certainly can if finances allow!).  Loving yourself is more of a mindset than a material object.

Eat something you love.  Watch a movie you like.  Go somewhere you've wanted to go, but haven't because your spouse, or children, or friends weren't really all that interested in going there.  Pamper yourself--maybe a long soak in the tub, maybe curl up on the couch with a good book, maybe an appointment for a massage or mani/pedi if that's your thing.  Do your favorite hobby, or sign up to take a class in a new one you've been thinking of trying.  Listen to your favorite music.

Loving ourselves is often the most difficult task we face in life, so we push it aside and focus our attention on showing others how much we love them.  Yet if no one reciprocates, we are left feeling worthless, undeserving of love.

Which is really a bunch of bull.  Everyone is deserving of love, just by virtue of being alive.

Love yourself.  You are worth it.  Flowers or not.  Jewelry or not.  Steak or not.  Card with hearts and poetry or not.  Lingerie or not.  Love yourself.

Remember, you can't make anyone else happy; only they can make themselves happy.  Which also means that no one can make you happy, except you.

Love yourself.

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