Updated: Apr 10, 2020
Atma Namaste (I salute the divinity within you)
I wholeheartedly dedicate this write-up to my beloved teacher Sriram Rajagopal Sir for enlightening and empowering us through his nurturing sessions and guided meditations. He is not only a revered disciple of the World Pranic Healing School but also a spiritual anchor, guide and mentor in the lives of many people. The lock-down has come as a blessing in disguise for me as I am devoting my ample time on listening to such wonderful sessions as well as doing my spiritual practices regularly. I am also the student and follower of the same school. What I like the most about him his humility and simplicity in conducting such sessions where he uses very simple narratives and help others understand the various nuances of life through beautiful examples quoted from our day to day routines and chores.
What is truly amazing is the way one can relate to his talks personally and get inspired immensely. And moreover, he never imposes his viewpoint and neither forces to believe something blindly. He just politely asks to first experience those and then apply them in one’s life. It’s been couple of weeks that I am attending his talks everyday and the most important lesson I have learnt is ‘Loving and Respecting the Self”. My intent behind writing this article is simply to share my leanings with my fellow beings so that we could become instrumental in helping, uplifting and elevating each other during these testing times.
Many a times, life gives us goosebumps and varied reasons to either love or hate ourselves. We all experience different situations and circumstances in our respective lives and they in turn condition our mind, behavioural patterns and thinking process. We carry on this mental make-up throughout our life journey and thus act accordingly. But nothing is right or wrong as we all have different perceptions, opinions and observations about certain common factors and ground realities of life. The real challenge lies when we judge ourselves as per our own blind beliefs and faith.
These days most of us talk about self-love and do keep on affirming to ourselves that ‘I love myself’. We also hear about such phrases that ‘love thyself’ or ‘you can love others only when you love your own self’. My question here was, ‘Is just simply saying and affirming to oneself that I love myself enough? or we really need to do something more. Then I realized knowing and saying is of no good if not applied and implemented in a righteous manner. It has been wisely said, ‘Action speaks louder than words’.
Self-love does not happen overnight. It is an approach, a process, a passion, a commitment and a journey which needs to be followed and practiced every moment of life. Branded and designer clothes, power make-up, luxurious lifestyle or passion for expensive accessories does not define self-love. It only helps in the gratification of our mind to some extent but thereafter we start feeling emptier and more lackluster.
Self-love is a mental state where appreciation for the self comes from within and it does not need anybody’s approval or acknowledgement. It propels and motivates intrinsically for loving oneself and doing all kind of actions and activities that foster one's love for the self without any bias, prejudice or inhibition. It is a state where one wholeheartedly accepts oneself and rises above the need of pleasing others to feel special. It brings dynamism in our life and we only look forward to those methods, means and techniques which can be instrumental and a divine channel in our physical, emotional, mental, financial and spiritual growth. The focus towards life changes and as the love for the self accelerates, one attracts better energies and frequencies in life. One gets better each day and the value of our own self increases not only in the conscious but also in the sub-conscious. When we move ahead in the journey through constant and consistent efforts of loving the self, we start inviting beautiful synergies as well and life also starts taking wonderful turns and twists.
Self-love emanates from within, where one cherishes one's innate and inner self despite flaws, weaknesses and fallouts. Self-love does not let the true self surrender before the inner demons of anger, anxiety, guilt, hatred and self-criticism. Self-love is the basic and most important ingredient of life that helps in developing a wholesome and abundant mindset that which in turn helps in stupendous self-growth. But the irony is that self-love is not well understood as various theories and doctrines make a round in our hearts and minds. Here my purpose is not to counter, favor or propose any one of them.
I just want to share certain small learnings wherein we can experience the natural love for us:-
Affirming the best for the self - Positive affirmations for the self do the magic. It brings us into alignment with our higher soul and the highest frequencies so that we could live an amazing as well as beautiful life.
Banishing self-doubt and self-criticism - Self-doubt and indulging in self-criticism is the biggest misery we create for ourselves. Whenever we falter in life, we start doubting ourselves and a continuous nagging process starts at the back of our minds which devalue ourselves in our own eyes. Here lies the most important realization. Doubts have always pushed our dreams to the dust. History is proof of the fact that those who have risen above doubts and criticism have created a niche and place for themselves in the annals of the history of mankind. They failed, learnt the lesson and moved ahead without cribbing and complaining. They very well understood that regret and repentance were futile and wasting precious and quality time in these detrimental mental states would be of no good as well as use.
Be self-sufficient and self-independent - Self-sufficiency and self-independence boosts the self by adding more power and courage to the morale. Dependency on others sometimes prove fatal to the self-esteem. So, work so smart that one becomes self-sufficient and self-sustaining by one's designed actions and efforts.
High self-esteem - Good self-esteem is very important to move ahead in life as it instills confidence and courage in one self. Go ahead and conquer the world as there is nothing impossible if one believes in one’s abilities, capabilities and the potential within.
Living a purposeful life - We get to live only once. We all are unique souls and have a distinct purpose in life. We must respect it and value it so that we can constantly work upon it as it will give us more contentment and peace. Identifying one’s purpose is not an easy task, but it is not impossible also. We must figure it out by remaining true to ourselves and should practice meditation and silence to reach up to it.
Loving kindness towards the self as well as other - Be kind not only towards others but also towards one self also. Value your own needs, demands and desires. Yes, of course in a balanced way. Fulfilling one’s desires and dreams is not a sin. It is a psychosomatic need which uplifts one’s morale and perspective towards life. Loving others add the icing on the cake as life becomes more sublime and meaningful.
Pampering and caressing the self - Yes, pampering and caressing oneself is the most important need and requirement of life to live a healthy and happy life. We might not acknowledge it but yes it makes a big difference. A simple positive statement said to the self in the morning sometimes create magic.
Peace with the self - Making peace with the self is very essential to live a healthy life. We understand ourselves the best and sometimes when we make mistakes or do something wrong, we might get annoyed with the self. Then there is a very strong probability of getting one self into a dilemma and living a guilt-ridden life. Therefore, it is better to make peace within and realise that no one is born picture perfect. Make realisations, implement them and move ahead.
Practicing mindfulness - Mindfulness really helps in building the self holistically. It is difficult to practice but gives amazing insights and valuable lessons in enhancing and enriching our lives. It helps in increasing our awareness levels as well as channels so that we could live healthy, hearty and happy life.
Respecting one’s personal space and drawing the boundaries - Self-respect is the essence of human life. If we do not respect ourselves, we cannot respect others as divinity lies within. We live in a sea of relationships where we encounter many challenges as we cannot keep everyone happy. We need to draw boundaries so that we should not get hurt in the process and lose our self-identity and self-worth also. But strangely it happens, and we tend to end up either losing the relationship or get hurt in the bargain. Therefore, emotional intelligence plays a very crucial role and we must stand by our own selves and respect our principles and value system.
Respecting one’s self-intuition and live life with pure intentions - Intuition plays a very vital role in directing and guiding our life’s journey. We must respect our intuitive intelligence but at the same time apply emotional as well as fundamental intelligence too so that right decisions could be taken for our well-being and self-growth. Our intentions must be noble, pious and honest to live a wonderful and beautiful life full of purpose, integrity and divinity.
Self- analysis and self-check - Self-analysis helps in guiding the self at various levels; be it physical, psychological, emotional or spiritual. Keeping a check on various emotions and corresponding feelings help one self to think, act and work better.
Self-appreciation - There is nothing wrong in appreciating the self. Humility does not mean that we should not cajole or applaud ourselves for the good we have done to ourselves and others. Be humble, don’t compare and reward yourself with some dose of appreciation frequently so that you remain in high spirits.
Self- approval and self-acknowledgement - Ironically, most of us live our life as per other’s opinions, whims and fancies. We are living in a society where approval and acknowledgement by others is considered more important than our own. Let us change the gear and start living according to our own rules, approvals and self-acknowledgement.
Self-gratitude - Gratitude towards self is of utmost importance. Be grateful for even the smallest actions and efforts you do for yourself to make you feel good and happy. Rejuvenation of the self happens when the soul feels gratified through self-love.
Self-compassion- Compassion towards self is mandatory. Be concerned and sensitive towards the physical, mental, emotional, financial and spiritual needs. Addressing them is very important as they nourish and enrich our mind, body and soul.
Self-healing - Healing the self is divine. One can heal oneself through various means. Healing happens when the self is aligned within. Accept yourself for what you are as there cannot be other you.
Self-introspection - Self introspection paves the way for self-enlightenment. It brings forth the undiluted and unbiased opinions about the self as everyone know oneself the best. Working on the weaknesses and strengthening the strengths is the key to self-mastery as well as soul mastery.
Self-talk - Self-talk is a very important tool in caring about the self. What a self-talk does sometimes nothing else does. Silence speaks better than words. In silence, one listens to the inner voice or the voice of the soul. It reprimands, repairs and reconstructs the broken pieces of the heart as well as the mind. Talking to the self not only heals the body and mind but also enriches the soul.
Self-understanding - Understanding the self is the key to improvement as well as enhancement. One must do one’s SWOT analysis on regular basis so that there is constant awareness about one's strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats and that would help significantly in working on the different areas and walks of life.
Sense of self-worth - Self-worth is really important in executing any task in life. If a person values oneself, one’s values and virtues, he or she remains aligned to one's inner self and that in turn helps him or her to perform better in life and accomplish the tasks amicably and without much fuss.
Self-protection and self-guidance - We must protect ourselves from unwanted thoughts and the negativity within and outside. Negative thoughts, words, deeds and actions deplete our energy levels and we become prone and susceptible to the undesirable circumstances and events. Remember! Like attracts like. Let us maintain the sanctity of our minds through positive thoughts, words and actions and guide ourselves constantly on the path of a beautiful and blessed life.
Self-aggrandizement - Get rid of the need for self-aggrandizement. Neither it does any good nor it helps in the growth process. We all are equal in the eyes of the divine and are bestowed with different calibers and personality traits. Respecting one’s unique characteristics as well as others lead us to the path of true salvation.
Self-forgiveness - Self - forgiveness is the perfect antidote for all the miseries created inside our heart and mind by our own selves. Forgiveness is a therapy which not only heals the mind but also nourishes the soul. Forgiving the self is very important as we tend to punish ourselves for not accomplishing many things in life and live under a delusion that we are not good enough. Forgiveness propels us to forget, learn the lessons and move ahead in life. Nothing is permanent here. So does our failures.
Self-actualization - It is the biggest drive which keep the hopes alive and desires burning. One must be aware and thoughtful about fulfillment of one’s needs, talents and capabilities so that the potential within could be unleashed and realized to the maximum.
Self-care and Self-control - Love yourself by caring for the self. Take good care of the physical health through physical exercise, balanced diet and maintain proper nutrition quotient in the eating habits. Empower and enrich the emotional as well as mental health through reading apt literature and listening to authentic and sound pearls of wisdom.
Working on the self - Generally, we work for others. Most of us play various roles in our life and focus on fulfilling the needs and desires of our loved ones. And in the process, we tend to forget about own self. Let us work for ourselves too and feel rejuvenated and reinvigorated.
In the end, I would like to say that by following even some of these, if we can change the scene within, we can definitely become instruments and divine channels in helping each other out but also in empowering and enriching each other’s life.
Disclaimer:- All these are my personal viewpoints cum subtle experiences of life. My intent behind sharing these is to highlight the fact that self-love should not be a decorative jargon but the way of life. Mere words do not contribute. Action, intent and efforts make all the difference.
About the Author
Dr. Gazal Chetan Bansal, Ph.D is a spiritual evangelist and a practical thinker. She is the founder and CEO of ‘Conscience Connect’ which aims to build up people holistically and wholesomely.
She holds Doctorate in Political Science and is an NLP Practitioner, a Pranic Psychotherapist, and an Arhatic Yogi. She is a Blogger and a prolific writer. She has co-authored and edited various books.
She writes to inspire people that deep contentment is the outcome of the passionate actions and courageous commitment towards compassion.