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When we are clear, the world is clear to us. When we have clarity of mind and heart, we know what to choose, where to go and whom to travel with. When your body is clear – of chemical toxins, negative emotional residue, excess weight and mental chatter – your soul can proceed in the direction of goodness, truth and beauty. When your body and mind and heart are all clear, you can move steadfastly in the direction of loving yourself.
When your life is cluttered in any way, on the other hand, it’s hard to have this clarity. When your garage is crammed with old paint cans and rags, broken down bicycles and last year’s plastic Christmas tree it’s hard to see where to park the car without bumping into something. When your mind is cluttered with self-judgment and accusation, it’s hard to see your talents. When your heart is clumped up by self-doubt, it’s hard to find love. When your body is compromised by a lack of self-care, it’s hard to be clear about your destiny.
When your body, your mind and your heart or your spiritual being is cluttered with what doesn’t belong there, it’s hard to see who you are. It’s hard to become what your highest self is asking you to be, and it’s almost impossible to love yourself. Because clutter and complexity are opposites of clarity – the accurate self-seeking that is love – it is of the utmost importance that you clear things out.
Seeing yourself accurately and accepting what you see is healthy love of self. In the interest of perpetuating a healthy self-love here are some helpful things to do:
Appreciate how special you are. You are kind of a big deal. There will never be anyone exactly like you. You were given special gifts and talents to share with the world
Affirm Yourself. Affirmations really do work. Figure out which affirmations you need to hear the most and say them to yourself all day long. Here are some specific to self-love:
I receive all the good that life has to offer me.
I am grateful for my life and have an attitude of gratitude.
I am brilliant, bright and beautiful.
The universe is awesome and so am I.
Do what you love to do. When you constantly deny yourself that which makes you feel alive, you are not going to be happy. Have fun every day. Honor your own needs. Take care of yourself as if you’re the most awesome person you’ve ever met.
Stop putting yourself down. Incessant self-deprecating humor is for losers. Ripping on yourself gets old fast. Use positive one-liners. Build yourself up.
Receive compliments gracefully. Let the love in. Say thank you to compliments. Realize the good you are.
Don’t compare yourself to others. Comparison is the fastest way to take all the fun out of life. You are more than enough. Avoid comparison like the plague.
Forgive yourself. Get clear on this one truth: guilt, shame and self-criticism are some of the most destructive forces in your life, which is why forgiving yourself is one of the most powerful.
As you discover the areas you need to clear out, you will find to your great delight and amazement that wonderful things begin to happen. The universe will step in to support you. It will bring you gifts – new people and experiences, space and opportunity, and above all, a cherishing sense of yourself. Less is more. Emptiness fills. The new will make the old irrelevant.
So take a moment now to think about this question; as far as you know, in what areas do you need to do some clearing out? Go over the kinds of clearing you need to do and make a commitment to start clearing and discover a new love of yourself.
Bob Mueller is senior director of mission & stewardship at Hosparus. The views in this column are those of the writer.