A Letter Of Self-Love

Happy Galentine's Day, ladies!

Given that this day is all about female friendship (and since I just wrote a blog post on making friends the other week), I thought I'd focus on a different female friendship in your life: the one you have with yourself.

Knowing I wanted to focus on self-love today, I'd been struggling to find a way to talk about it that felt different from my self-love blog post from last year. Then all of a sudden, a good friend emailed me a piece written by Tama Kieves for Oprah.com about how she talks to herself when fear creeps in. I opened the link and a lightbulb went off! This piece contained the exact message I needed to hear in that moment and it gave me inspiration for a fresh take on a self-love blog post.

Self-criticism to self-love:

Now you might be wondering how I could refer to the relationship you have with yourself as a friendship. For many people, their relationship with themselves doesn't look like any other friendship they have.

And it's true: we tend to criticize ourselves for the smallest of things in ways that we would never do to other people. We are often our own harshest critics.

Inevitably, that constant internal dialogue of "I'm not good enough" wears us down. As a result, we seek external validation and proof that we are worthy or lovable or simply "enough". Yet, when we constantly seek love and validation from external sources, that is when we walk away from ourselves. We forget to listen to our own voices, our own desires, our own visions for our lives.

When we come back to ourselves and reassure ourselves of our own worthiness - regardless of external opinions - that is when we thrive. When we do this, life becomes easier. We get into flow, our outer relationships flourish, we feel connected to the world around us - because the relationship we have with ourselves is one of love and respect.

To cultivate this positive relationship with ourselves takes an act of changing the narrative. It takes showing ourselves that we truly believe in our own capabilities and that we do, in fact, love ourselves. Because in the end, that's what our inners selves want to hear - we are loved - and who better to provide that love than us?

So how do we go about changing the narrative from self-criticism to self-love?

One of my favorite exercises to help do this is to write a love letter to yourself telling yourself all of the reasons why you are magic.

I love this exercise because it's an actionable way to help you reframe your inner dialogue. It's easy to say you'll practice self-love, but then continue to criticize yourself. Instead, this exercise forces you to literally write out all of the ways in which you are wonderful. It's like getting a pep talk from your best friend, except it's coming from your internal best friend (who likely has been waiting for you to notice her for a while). I guarantee she's got a lot to say!

In case you're wondering what the hell a self-love letter would even look like, I'll go first.

My love letter to myself:

Dear Carolyn,

I love you and I believe in you.

You've got this! You have the power to create anything you want in your life. While fear may creep in and try to tell you otherwise, you know the Truth (with a capital T) deep down.

You are smart, you are strong, you are capable and you are successful. You are on a path that you've known you were meant for since middle school. You have been put here to help other people - especially other women - and you're damn good at it.

You have what it takes to build a successful business and change the lives of thousands of people. You're already doing the thing!

I love you and I believe in you.

When you trust yourself and your purpose, you cannot fail. While certain things may not work out as you want them to, that's okay. It's all part of the process and each of these is directing you to what's right for you.

Don't force it - let it happen and Trust. When you trust yourself and your intuition, thats when you are in flow. That's when the magic happens. And you, darling, have lots of magic around you.

I love you and I believe in you.

Keep going. You're doing great! Remember that the only voice that matters is your own. You know what sits well with you and what doesn't. Keep following your gut. Keep believing in yourself. You've got this! And I'm right here, cheering you on the whole way.



your turn:

See? Doesn't a pep talk like that sound so nice? 

Now it's your turn! Write yourself a love letter giving yourself the encouragement you need to hear today. 

Talk to yourself just as your best friend would. Show your compassion and love for yourself. You can use my example as your guide or write yours in a completely different style. It's totally up to you, my friend!

Also, don't get discouraged if this feels unnatural at first. Self-love takes practice and dedication. You've likely been criticizing yourself for so long that just kicking the habit isn't a quick switch. I know it hasn't been for me. But it is possible.

Over time, the more you profess your love for yourself, the more your soul believes in your words. Writing a self-love letter is a great place to start!

Let me know about your experience with this exercise in the comments below!

Be well,