“Know yourself. Don’t accept your dog’s admiration as
conclusive evidence that you are wonderful.” Ann Landers

I love this Ann Landers quote because it is so true. So many of us look to others to determine how wonderful we are. We look to our spouses, partners, children, and even our dogs to let us know how wonderful we are. This is how we are “programmed” in our society. We look outside of ourselves for confirmation of who we are. This is co-dependence at its best.

If you turn on your radio, you will most likely hear a song that speaks of a co-dependent kind of love. Whether you are listening to Celine Dion sing, “I’m everything I am because you loved me” or Michael Bolton croon, “Tell me how am I supposed to live without you,” or “How do I live without you,” your subconscious mind at some level is being programmed to believe that the feeling of being loved only comes from someone outside of yourself. Love that is dependent on someone in the outer world is like a pseudo love. It is not the real thing because it will come and go like the wind. Have you ever noticed how one moment your partner adores you, and the next moment you feel rejected? The good news is that at the core of your being is an infinite wellspring of pure unconditional love that never comes or goes.

It all comes from within you. We spend so much of our energy getting to know those that we love. What about us? What about knowing YOU?

Your true nature is literally love itself. The only kind of love that is real and everlasting is that which cannot be damaged, altered, or changed in any way. It is that love which pours consistently from your innermost being. It’s that natural love you have for a beautiful sunset, a new rosebud, a soft cuddly puppy, or a sleeping baby. This love that naturally occurs inside you is what self-love consists of. When you turn towards the source of this love, you start to love yourself. You experience a love that does not die, change with the seasons, or wither with time. The true source of self-love will always be as bright as the sun and will reside inside of you no matter what is happening in your outer world or how difficult your life has become. No matter what “they” say (or don’t say) to you in the morning, or who comes and goes in your outer world, this divine love will always be there for you.

Loving yourself is empowering! It gives you a true sense of freedom because you are no longer dependent on others for feelings of love and worthiness. Depending on love from outside yourself is like trying to depend solely on the sun for heat and warmth. Some days, it may be super sunny and you may feel lots of love from others, while other days it may be raining and snowing because your intimate partner or friends are not giving you love and affection. This leaves you feeling devoid of love, and it creates strong feelings of neediness and unworthiness. On the other hand, nurturing deep feelings of love and affection for yourself is like having an internal sun burning at your core that continues to shed light and warmth on you no matter what is happening in your external world. When you have your internal self-loving sun shining brightly inside, you naturally pour your love onto others without needing anything back in return. This self-love enables you to effortlessly live a life of genuine joy and become an unconditionally loving being for everyone.

When you know yourself, you are able to give yourself what you truly need. You are able to listen to what you want. You are able to ask for what you want—and let’s face it, that is the most empowering feeling on the planet. It is when you ask that you receive.

Knowing Yourself Playsheet:

  1. What makes me happy? Sad? Mad? Fearful?
  2. What am I passionate about? What really makes me feel connected to myself?
  3. What makes me totally inspired? What makes me so furious?
  4. What do I enjoy doing? What do I hate doing?
  5. What type of movies do I enjoy? Sports? Songs? What types of nature do I enjoy being in?

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