By Barbara Rose, PhD
I ask you now to look at the current state of your love life, your romantic love life, and your views and feelings about the relationship you are currently in or–if you currently do not have an intimate romantic partner–how you view relationships in general.
I must make one exception for this chapter: if your partner recently died and you are grieving the loss of this person’s physical presence, please know that your grief will lessen over time. Meanwhile, you can still glean some insight pertaining to self-love and how you view yourself.
Whether or not you are in a relationship now, how do you view romantic relationships? If you are in one now, how do you feel in this relationship?
Your feelings about this relationship and your feelings while in this relationship are a direct reflection of your feelings about yourself.
If you are tolerating abuse, it is because you believe that no one else could love you. If you are being verbally, mentally, emotionally, or physically abused, the only way you will ever love yourself is to get out of this relationship. I hope with all of my heart that today–right now–will be the time you decide to get out, because this will be the beginning of your life filled with self-love and joy.
If you feel afraid of being alone and without a partner, this is because no one has yet taught you how to love yourself, to honor your feelings, and to follow what those feelings are telling you, which is why you may feel insecure. You were most likely taught to follow what others told you in order to gain acceptance and love by everyone other than your own self.
You can be in a relationship and feel completely isolated and alone if this relationship is truly not in your best interest. Finding the courage to remove yourself from a painful relationship comes with your commitment to yourself and with understanding how much you matter; the courage comes with consciously choosing to lift yourself out of misery.
There is no such thing as a perfect relationship, just as there is no such thing as a perfect person. It is the degree of joy or sadness you feel that clearly indicates how you feel about yourself. It is not about the other person or what they are doing. It is about how you feel in this relationship.
As I said earlier, getting to the point where you finally love yourself requires complete self-honesty. If you are giving yourself a lot of excuses to remain in a relationship in which you feel miserable, then you are also giving yourself a lot of excuses as to why you do not honor your feelings and live your truth. In short, you are deceiving yourself. I used to deceive myself, too. I used to tolerate a lot because I had not yet learned how to love myself. Getting honest with yourself is your first step.
Admitting your truth to yourself is the only way you will finally open the door to self-love. Of course I will share the rest of this process with you; but there are a lot of bases to cover because there are many different areas of life that reflect how you feel about yourself; I must bring them into your conscious awareness to help you awaken to the real truth inside of you, which is the foundation of self-love.
© Copyright 2011 Barbara Rose, PhD All Rights Reserved. Excerpt from the book Dear God, How Can I Finally Love Myself? (Published by The Rose Group, October 2006) ISBN: 0974145769