We pass through life forming and reforming hundreds of relationships with friends, coworkers, lovers, relatives, peers, acquaintances, etc. And what we learn from this amalgamation of interactions, ultimately, is that anyone may come and go at any given moment. There is only one relationship that endures as a permanent fixture throughout the entirety of your life, and that is the relationship you have with yourself. And if that relationship is strained by guilt, dislike, emotional distance or distrust, then your external bonds are bound to suffer as well.
Maintaining a healthy sense of self-love is crucial to your overall well-being. The more you accept, understand, and appreciate yourself, the more you thrive under any circumstances. The following is an excerpt from my new book, The Karma Queens' Guide to Relationships:
To increase your self-love, each morning, when you wake up and look in the mirror as you brush your teeth, stop to look into your eyes and affirm the truth that you are an exquisite expression of divine love. Say aloud, "I am worthy of all the joys and riches in the universe." Then say to yourself, looking deeply into your eyes, "I love you." And say, "Thank you, God, for another day in which to experience love!"
Every day that you say this affirmation, you will find yourself believing it just a little more. If you feel resistance when you are saying it, that's OK. Keep in mind that affirmations should be in the present tense so that you are affirming their truths now, in the present moment. If you resist saying "I am loving" or you are skeptical about being part of a universal whole, then you have two choices: continue to say the affirmation until you feel it is true for you, or alter the affirmation slightly so that you feel comfortable. For instance, you might say, "I am becoming more loving. I want to be more loving. I am coming to understand that I am part of a universal whole." If you still feel resistance, you may need more help in letting go of the destructive beliefs about yourself and the love that's available to you and within you.
Keep doing the affirmations and you will come to love yourself more. Then, it will be easier to face the truth about the actions you have taken and the way you've interacted with others. You will feel the discomfort of guilt, which is an important emotion designed to get us to slow down and address our patterns and make changes in our beliefs and actions so that we are more loving on a daily basis. However, you will find it easier not to judge yourself harshly and not to slip back into denial of your actions. You will learn to tolerate the discomfort of self-examination. Self-love, and trust in the healing force of divine love, will make it easier to remain present with your painful emotions as you perform your inner work.
Affirmations actually rewire your brain to generate positive thoughts more easily. Much like exercise, saying affirmations aloud raises the level of feel-good hormones in the body and causes the brain to form new neural networks that support positive thoughts. But affirmations alone don't magically change the circumstances of life. You have to translate thoughts, words and beliefs into actions in order to see results. If you tell yourself "I'm beautiful," you'll begin to believe it. You'll also begin to act on it; you'll engage in behaviors that reflect your newfound understanding of your beauty. You may take a bit of extra time in the morning to get ready, or perhaps change your look slightly, or begin exercising regularly. Because you're beautiful, you may begin to take better care of yourself and carry yourself differently. When you believe what you say, you act on it, and draw your affirmation into reality.
Metaphysically, affirmations affect the universal consciousness that is spirit. When you think them, you change your body's energy field, which affects the energy field that is universal consciousness. And when you speak them, you emit a sound wave that travels through the air and interacts with the delicate dynamic of the universe. Remember that a thought is an inner activity, while speech has an outward effect. This is why it's so important to speak your positive thoughts. The universal consciousness will respond in kind, so you should be aware of what thoughts and affirmations you are sending out into the energy field that is shared by all. Affirm the very best about yourself and your life. And when you say affirmations, make yourself believe what you are saying -- that is the key to affirming speech into reality. Here are eight empowering affirmations to fortify self-love:
Today, I am met with unexpected joys and welcome opportunities. Today is the beginning of a brand new cycle of positivity.
Love is my birthright. I am a manifestation of this love. I am loving and loved by many.
I have full power over my destiny and trust that Spirit will guide me to make the best decisions.
I am overflowing with joy, vitality and energy -- I'm unstoppable!
My body is healthy. My mind is brilliant. My heart is at peace. My soul is tranquil.
I acknowledge my own self-worth; my confidence is soaring.
I am at peace with all that has happened, is happening, and will happen because I know that everything is towards my highest good.
My efforts are being supported by the universe; my dreams are manifesting into reality before my eyes.
Don't forget to follow through on your intentions of self-love with positive action. Take care of your body, engage in activities that revitalize you, and heed the voice of your true self.
To affirming self-love,
Dr. Carmen Harra
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