By Wes Annac, Openhearted Rebel
I used to have a column on the Culture of Awareness called ‘Love Yourself’ in which I shared a few words on confidence, self-love, empowerment, and other similar topics. I encouraged readers to focus on loving and accepting themselves before trying to help others, because in my opinion, we’ll be miserable if we try so hard to help the world that we don’t help ourselves.
Love and service to oneself is as important as the love given to the world, and some spiritual people have unintentionally become martyrs by focusing more on the world’s problems than their own. In doing so, they’ve ignored their own issues and caused a blockage to form between themselves and the higher, more carefree state of being they seek.
5 Benefits of Self-Love
Beyond undoing this blockage and illuminating the spirit’s presence within you, there are plenty of benefits of self-love. These include but aren’t limited to:
- Increased confidence in your abilities
- Increased optimism about the world around you
- An understanding of the importance of selfless service and service to oneself
- Perseverance in hard times (due to increased confidence)
- An understanding that everything in life is a learning experience
Becoming aware of the ways self-love can help you is the first step to letting it become a part of your life, and everything will seem to get better when love takes the wheel. Your outlook will improve, and you’ll be more inspired to contribute to the world’s awakening in ways that you hope will reach the people who need it the most.
You Can Make a Change
Self-love gives you the confidence to see that despite what society drills in everyone’s heads, you’re capable of influencing public opinion and making a change.
If you apply yourself and work hard toward the changes you want to see, inner and outer, miracles will start to happen. You’ll wonder where they came from and how they appeared out of nowhere, but if you give it some thought, you’ll realize that your hard work was responsible.
You made it happen with determination and perseverance, and if you keep going from there, you’ll achieve a level of personal and social transformation you never expected.
The Fear-Driven ‘Voice’
In my experience, the biggest obstacle to self-love is the little fear-driven ‘voice’ within that tries to convince you that you aren’t good or worthy enough for the life you want. This voice is rooted primarily in hesitation and self-doubt, and to get rid of it only requires a return to love.
You might still hear it when you’re centered in love, but it won’t seem to bother you as much. Its frantic attempts to take you off of your path will fail when you have the confidence to take on adversity, challenges and new experiences with no fear or hesitation, and you’ll realize that it can only bring you down if you let it.
Only if you listen to it will it succeed in discouraging or distracting you, and to transcend its overbearing influence requires little more than love, confidence and diligent dedication to the path you know is right for you.
Love Brings Confidence
Adversity is unavoidable; it’ll always be here and it’ll always have something to teach. The difference between going through it when you love yourself and when you don’t is that the latter may make you want to give up due to a lack of confidence.
You’ll see most forms of adversity as fun new challenges that you’ll try your best to get through when you love yourself, and you’ll feel even better about yourself when you succeed.
You’ll be open to new challenges that take you out of your comfort zone and ultimately inspire you more, and your authenticity as a spiritual, creative, revolutionary human being will grow as you willingly and successfully take on all of life’s challenges.
Eventually, they won’t be as challenging or stressful; they’ll be more like a game or a puzzle you become more and more excited to solve.
A Lack of Love
It’s probably clear to you that the world is suffering from a lack of love, and in my opinion, the main cause is a lack of self-love that, if we could restore, would change life for everyone. The problem is that it can only be restored by those who lose it, and I couldn’t reconnect you with it no matter how hard I tried.
With these writings, I might be able to bring you closer to it or provide a vague description of my experience with it but that’s probably as far as it can go before you’d have to take over.
It’s a decision you have to make and a process you have to go through, but if everyone had love for themselves, the apathy, bitterness and hate that fuels most of our problems would be gone.
They all stem from a lack of self-love and a lack of love for the world, and they can be resolved by returning to love and sharing it with those who lack it.
Love and Success
You may notice that I use the phrase, ‘in my opinion’, a lot in these writings, and I do it because I don’t want for my opinion to come across as fact just because it’s posted on the internet.
I want for readers to go by their own experience, be discerning and decide for themselves if they want to be open to what I put out there, and I intend only to share my experience and the opinions that come with it.
With this said, in my opinion, nothing we do will succeed if we don’t do it with love.
Creativity is fruitless if love isn’t involved, and the personal and social changes we want to make will be short-lived without love and compassion.
Justice is also important, and once the powers that be are held accountable for their crimes, love will teach us to forgive.
If you love yourself, you’ll probably think forgiving the ‘elite’ is pretty easy if you lose yourself, but those who suffer from a lack of love will want vengeance.
Despite how necessary they’ll think it is, it won’t get us anywhere in terms of permanently changing the world. However, love, forgiveness and understanding (which can only come after justice) will help us make sure we don’t create the same kind of violent and hateful world for future generations.
If you want to see the world change, consider what kind of personal or heart-centered changes you can embrace to make it a reality. When you have trouble, just look at the thousands of other ‘conscious’ people who are living from the heart and changing the world and remember that it’s not always easy for them either.
The struggle to create something meaningful exists for pretty much everyone, and we can eradicate it by making peace with it.
When you make peace with the things that challenge your heart-centeredness and your ability to create, they no longer make you feel negative because you learn to flow with them.
Self-love gives you permission to relax into the calm, blissful higher consciousness that brings your awareness to love even more, and the struggle will eventually cease as you relax into the new, spiritually vibrant life you’ll have created.
Love and enlightenment go hand-in-hand, and you might be pleasantly surprised to learn you can find far more bliss and inspiration within than in the world. It all comes from the heart, and therefore, the heart will lead us home.