Love Yourself First

Valentine’s Day isn’t something my other half and I celebrate – love is for the whole year, not just one overhyped, overpriced day, right? (Cynical, me?!).

Valentine’s Day is, for me, about all sorts of love, not just the romantic kind. Love for your children, love your your family friends, platonic love.

Love for yourself.

And it’s that love I think we can tend to forget about.

I know I do.

The concept of ‘loving yourself’ can have negative connotations: that you think you are the most wonderful thing in the world ever and everyone else should too, that you have your head up your own backside that you are selfish and narcissistic.

That’s because we are taught to be humble, modest, and to cut down tall poppies.

In the two years since my illness, and Hugo’s birth and death I have been working on not just loving myself but liking myself.

I can’t love myself without liking myself: and in order to like myself I have to forgive myself.

To acknowledge and accept that everything that happened was not my fault. That there is nothing I could have done differently.

To acknowledge and accept how I am now, with my ups and my downs.

To acknowledge and accept that I am allowed to enjoy life, to have fun. To feel proud of my achievements.

To understand I can leave the guilt behind.

To understand I can stop punishing myself.

To accept I can be kind to myself.

It’s not easy.

I am working on the new core values I have established for myself.

I am trying to love myself. Love myself how I would want for others: respect, kindness, empathy, compassion.

Believing in myself (and what’s wrong with thinking you are the most wonderful thing in the world? Self-belief shouldn’t be a dirty term, we need to learn the distinction between that and self-obsession).

Taking space when I need it (that’s often).

Giving myself space to breathe, to be.

To rebuild.

And build that resilience.

Take my own advice, remember that I cannot pour from an empty cup.

It’s something I owe to Hugo.

And to everyone I love, and who love me.

To love myself first.

To understand too that I am loved, that I am loveable, that I am worthy of love.

What will you do to love yourself first?

Not just today, but every day?





4 Comments on Love Yourself First

  1. Becky Cowley
    February 22, 2016 at 8:18 am (4 years ago)

    As always Leigh a wonderful post. I think we all struggle to like/love ourselves all of the time but it’s important to take time and remind ourselves we’re actually all right šŸ™‚ xx
    Becky Cowley recently posted…GrowMy Profile

  2. Verily Victoria Vocalises
    February 15, 2016 at 7:02 pm (4 years ago)

    I really enjoyed this post. I think the hardest thing myself is worrying too much about what people think of me and, strangely enough, it is blogging that is helping me overcome this. My Mumsnet post had some really nasty comments on it but I knew that I was starting to succeed in my battle with this emotion when I didn’t get suckered in to what they were saying and just walked away. Because I know, myself, what is right for me! Plus, when you blog and put yourself out there, you get lots and lots of supportive and positive comments too šŸ™‚ Very thought-provoking post xx #ThePrompt
    Verily Victoria Vocalises recently posted…The Ingenious Kidizoom Action Cam by VTechMy Profile

  3. Sara | mumturnedmom
    February 14, 2016 at 4:08 pm (4 years ago)

    So very true, but yes, very difficult to actually do! This is something that I am working on too – without the need for/reliance on external validation. Liking myself, for me, because I do think that it’s an important part of accepting love from others. Thank you so much for sharing with #ThePrompt x
    Sara | mumturnedmom recently posted…Sunday Photo: 14 February 2016My Profile

    • Leigh
      February 15, 2016 at 4:38 pm (4 years ago)

      That’s true – it’s like accepting a compliment gracefully which I think you can only do if you like yourself otherwise you say “Oh you don’t mean that” or something. Thanks for commenting xxx


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