Babies are so adorable! They have that charm and innocence that no other age group has. They don’t worry about what others think of them and they never try to impress others. They’re sweet, pure, completely authentic, and have hearts of gold.
Babies have not a care in the world what people think of them. They have no inhibitions whatsoever. They’re not afraid to cry and express their wants and needs. You can see it in the way little toddlers shamelessly coo, laugh, babble, skip, run, and dance in front of anyone. These little sweeties are fearless. They’re not afraid to show their emotions, express their thoughts, show their creativity.
Their precious little souls are completely open. They give, share, and receive love with an open and grateful heart. They love being loved and doted on and will receive it with a soft coo or laugh.
Everything starts with self-love and babies are a perfect example of it.
Sadly, as time passes and these babies get older, they slowly and incrementally become tainted by the ways of people and the world. Many are raised in toxic environments and by parents who are critical and abusive to them. So, they build a protective wall around themselves to try and keep the contamination out. Because their feelings get discounted, ridiculed, even punished by family members and others, they learn to mask those feelings. They collect emotional baggage as they become preschoolers, school-aged kids, then teenagers, and finally, adults.
Many are also raised by drug-addicted, mentally ill, and neglectful adults and they build walls to protect themselves from that as well. Many must learn to raise themselves.
Low self-esteem and lack of confidence are not the characteristics we’re born with. They’re instilled in us by either by well-meaning family members who wish to keep us humble and sweet, or they’re force-fed to us by bullies and abusers.
As a result, many babies grow into people who are under the false belief that they are unlovable and don’t deserve to have their wants and needs met and thus, people who are filled with either anger and self-loathing, or sad, depressed, helpless victims.
We all go through these terrible changes, even those who aren’t bullied, and only few people in this world manage to keep that confidence and joy they were born with, that is, IF there is anyone who does. Life’s disappointments, hurts, and heartaches have ways of doing these things to all of us. However, people who are bullied and abused suffer the worst changes.
They stop expressing emotions and give up asking for anything because, sometime during their childhoods, they were conditioned by other people to think that they’re self-centered and wrong for ever needing or wanting anything out of life.
Therefore, they resign themselves to the attitude that, things are “just the way they are” and that there’s nothing they can do to change anything.
And when you tell them about self-love and how important it is, they wince at the idea because it makes them uncomfortable. But, again, they have been programmed to think that self-love is somehow self-absorbed and evil. I can relate to this because, when I was thirteen and fourteen years old, I did the exact same when I was first told about the idea of self-love and self-care.
The thought of looking at myself in the mirror every day and telling myself “I love you” or “You’re beautiful,” “You’re Smart,” “You’re awesome,” etc., felt both weird and downright sickening because I was under the impression that it was all a sign of sheer vanity.
Self-love can feel downright painful after you’ve wasted years and decades hating and degrading yourself because it’s not something you’re accustomed to doing. Anything new and out of the ordinary feels painful at first. Like all things, it must become a habit first and it can only become habit through rigorous learning and practice.
‘You see? My bullies and a few abusive others had sold me on the idea that any form of self-care or self-love was abhorrent and self-serving. I was under the misguided belief that self-degradation and self-criticism was a virtue and a sign of being humble and meek. I thought that was what normal people did, as I watched a few family members do the same thing.
Some of my family members still do this at times and it breaks my heart. If only they could see, I mean, truly see their value and that they’re wonderful people who are worth more than gold.
The truth is that self-hatred is the equivalent of having a millstone hung from your neck and having to drag it around everywhere you go because it’s exhausting. It zaps your energy. It takes the magic, wonder, and excitement from your life. It keeps you stuck and worse, invites more disrespect and abuse from others.
Self-love only comes from within, never from without. It’s not something you can get from a partner, a spouse, or a boatload of friends. It doesn’t come from having a banging body or wearing fancy clothes, hairdos, or makeup. Money can’t buy self-love. Power doesn’t give it to you and neither does prestige. Self-love comes from the heart and only the heart.
Self-love is about self-acceptance and being perfectly okay with your imperfections. It comes from being comfortable in your own skin and not caring even the slightest what others think or say of you.
In order to find peace and joy in life, self-love is a must-have. It helps you to achieve your goals and realize your dreams and aspirations. It determines your outcomes- whether you succeed or fail. It helps you to better re-frame bad situations and see them as learning experiences. Self-love gives you peace of mind.
In a nutshell, self-love gives you complete freedom! It is the key to happiness and joy!
Don’t you think you deserve to be at peace with yourself? Don’t you think you deserve happiness and joy? I do.
So, be like a baby. Love yourself. Know that your true colors are vibrant and never be afraid to show them. Dance like you’ve never been ridiculed. And play like you’ve never fallen and scraped your knee. Express your emotions. Love, laugh, and live.
You’ll be surprised at how everything will change for the better! I promise!