Saturday, August 11, 2012

Journey To Your Heart - Learning To Love Yourself After Abuse

One of my favorite affirmation books that I have used over the years of my healing journey is Melody Beattie's Journey to the Heart: Daily Meditations on the Path to Freeing Your Soul.  The meditation for January 8 is entitled "Love Yourself Until It's Real." I am going to share just a little of Ms Beattie's wisdom from that page:

"Self-love means loving and accepting yourself, your thoughts, beauty, emotions, your faults, imperfections, and flaws, your strengths, wit, wisdom, as well as your peculiar and unique way of seeing the world. . .

Loving yourself means accepting and loving each and every part of you, and knowing---knowing---that you are worthy, valuable, and lovable. It means loving and accepting yourself when you're surrounded by people who love you, and during those times when you think everyone's gone away, when you wonder if God's gone away too."

. . . .

"Sometimes, loving ourselves means accepting ourselves enough to tell ourselves other people like us and approve of us. Sometimes loving ourselves means approving of ourselves, even when they don't. It takes courage to stop cowering and openly love, accept, and approve of ourselves.

Don't just say the words. Love yourself until you experience that love."


Loving yourself is the real beginning of healing from abuse of any kind.  When you truly love yourself, you no longer allow anyone to abuse you, not even yourself. Loving yourself means you feel your own self-worth and you stop the negative voices in your head that said you deserved to be abused. You no longer believe that the abuse was your fault or that you attracted it.

Loving yourself means forgiving yourself for whatever negative thoughts that you believed about yourself. Recognize that many of those negative thoughts came from your abusers or your parents or your teachers. They weren't even your thoughts until someone in authority put them in your head.

Love yourself whether you think anyone else does or not. When you love yourself, you teach others how to love you too.  Be kind to yourself like you would be kind to others. Laugh at yourself and don't take life so seriously. Learn to recognize when you are stressing out. Breathe and relax. Remember to play as you did as a child. Being childlike is different than being childish. Enjoy spending time alone and listen for the inner voice that you all have. Make time to spend with family and friends who help you to feel good about yourself.

In 12-Step programs, you are told "Fake it 'til you make it." Do that with loving yourself until loving yourself becomes real. Pay attention to your thoughts and how you feel about yourself as you go through each day. Remember that how you treat yourself teaches others how to treat you. Give yourself time. Life, as well as healing, is a journey. Instant fixes don't work when it comes to healing from abuse and neglect from childhood. You are worth the time and the effort that it takes to heal. Learning to love yourself is the best gift that you can give yourself or your children.
Patricia

16 comments:

CRUISEROO said...

Thank you Patricia. So very true. Mind if I share this with my Facebook group, OUT FROM UNDER

Patricia Singleton said...

Cruiseroo, You are very welcome. Feel free to share any of my blog posts with your followers on Facebook, Twitter or any other groups you may be a part of. Thank you for sharing.

CRUISEROO said...

Thanks Patricia. Will do. Hope you might join my Facebook group too. Do you have one there?

Patricia Singleton said...

Cruiseroo, already visited your blog and left comments and your Facebook page and joined and shared on my Facebook page.

Jane Rowan said...

Thank you, Patricia!
Although I've worked with this a thousand times, today's another day when I need to hear and heed this message.

All my best,
Jane

Patricia Singleton said...

Jane Rowan, you are very welcome. That is what I like about the daily meditation books that I have read and used for years. We do sometimes need the reminder, especially about loving ourselves. Loving ourselves doesn't come naturally like it should if you grew up hearing other messages from your parents &/or abusers.

ELIZABETHSPRAT1 said...

Its beautiful and so true. Thankyou

Patricia Singleton said...

ElizabethSprat1, you are very welcome. Thank you for visiting my blog. Hope you will return.

Christian Steele said...

Wow. I love that emphasis on knowing and accepting your worth. For far too long have we believed in our experiences when in reality we have been experiencing our beliefs.

Fake it until you make it?

What is needed is a new mindset and a new way of thinking. Make that!

Patricia Singleton said...

Christian, thank you. So many survivors don't know that they are worthy. I didn't for a long time. When I started to value myself and love myself, I started to heal faster.

Chamunda Swami-spiritual healer said...

This blog post by you is an appreciable effort as it emits a strong message in a simple way. Thanks for sharing your views.

Patricia Singleton said...

Chamunda Swami - spiritual healer, Thank you for your encouraging words about my views. You are very welcome. Learning to love yourself is, in my opinion, the most important tool for healing from abuse.

Ressurrection said...

Thank you for this blog. I hope to stay connected. Also, I think you should look up Victoria Pendragon. You all may have a connection. Peace, Ressurrection

Patricia Singleton said...

Ressurrection, you are very welcome. On the right hand side of the page of my blog page, you will find that you have a choice of 2 different ways of subscribing to make it easier for you to stay connected if you would like too. Have not heard of Victoria Pendragon but I will Google her. Have a glorious day.

Mary Graziano said...

Pat, excellent article, loving ourselves is so hard to do. I am starting to feel that way about me more. And I know I will get there, because I am thinking more positive everyday. Thank you my friend. Hugs and Love to you. <3

Patricia Singleton said...

Mary, Hugs and love to you too, my friend. We are all worthy of our own love. You have such a kind heart. I love that about you. Sometimes we get lied to and sometimes we get hurt but we have to keep our hearts open in order to go from just surviving to thriving. The world is a good place because you are in it, my friend.