I have seen so many discussions lately about self-love and the difficulty with authentically feeling that love. What I see people coming up against over and over is the inability to connect with the love that they want to offer themselves or receive from other people.
Before we can gain the effects of loving ourselves we have to do the healing around what is was that created the inability in the first place. For me, I had a wound that caused me to feel unworthy and unlovable, what I found was until I did the work on that issue I was not able to receive love from anyone. I continually thought that people who claimed to love me did not truly love me because however they loved me, I couldn’t feel it. When I finally did the healing work around my sense of unworthiness, I was able to see that all alon
g I had been surrounded by love that was waiting to be let in.
There are different “childhood wounds” that may create this difficulty with self-love. As children, from the time we are born, we are constantly looking for love. This can come in the form of being held and fed as a baby, having attention paid to us, receiving love, affection and positive reflections from those around us. When we don’t receive this we can become wounded. Maybe we were abandoned or our parent(s) didn’t know how to show love. Maybe we have physical illnesses that created a barrier from receiving what we needed or maybe our disposition just required more attention than another child. Whatever the reason for the original wound, as adults it is our responsibility to heal it in order to create what we want in our lives.
There are many tools you can use to heal the inner child.
There is a technique where the “now” you and you the child write to each other. You with your dominant hand and the inner child with the non-dominant hand write back and forth with apologies and openness allowing the inner child to ask for what it needs in order to feel whole. The first time I did this I thought it was ridiculous. I was happily surprised to see how strong the effects can be.
You can ask yourself what it is the inner child needs and find ways to make that happen. If your child self needed to play more then play, blow some bubbles, get a stuffed animal, play with blocks. If you needed more touch, touch yourself, caress your face, give yourself a hug. Find someone that you trust that can help you do some of these things.
Offer validation and understanding to the younger you for things they did and things they felt. It is amazing how strong the power of validation can be. Just being heard can give a person the ability to conquer anything.
These are a few small things that you can do to begin the healing process. There is so much information about healing the inner child everywhere you look. Find something that works for you. Seek counseling, life coaching, spiritual guidance. The point of all of this is to heal yourself enough that you can begin the journey of self-love which is one of the most beautiful journeys there is.