When it comes to what is necessary to have healthy, thriving, passionate, intimate, and trusting relationships, we are all looking for answers. Can it really be something as simple as self-love?
We are all looking for the secret ingredient to the perfect relationship recipe that will fix all of our problems with our significant others. We are obsessed with how to love properly, how to express it in the right way, and what we can fix about ourselves in order to do so.
We are searching for the answers to our love life everywhere we feel like we can control. We change our clothes and our hair to look more clean cut and presentable. We work out harder and eat better to get a more attractive physique. We try to be funnier, more outgoing, or more intelligent.
We believe that we are more worthy and deserving of love if we look or act a certain way.
What if the key to having the perfect relationship doesn’t lie outside of you? What if the secret ingredient you have been longing for is in the very place you have avoided confronting?
While this might seem a bit obvious – that the answer lies within – it’s the realist, harshest, and most overwhelming/intimidating truth out there.
Accepting yourself as you are is the answer to how to create the healthiest romantic relationship possible.
Self-love isn’t all about body positivity and incorporating new self-care routine (although those are important). At first, it is actually much more difficult.
Self-love is staring your inner demons in the face until they cease to exist.
It is facing your traumas, your insecurities, your mistakes, and your flaws, and overcoming them all.
It is forgiving yourself for being imperfect.
It is forgiving those that have hurt you – no matter how badly – and releasing those resentments for your own good.
It is addressing where you have been toxic to yourself and to other people, and doing the work it takes to change it.
It requires a lot of honesty with yourself, which can be a very difficult thing to do. However, once achieved, turns into something truly amazing.
The process of learning how to love yourself is a beautiful one. It may be exhausting to navigate and take a long time to arrive at, but the end result is well worth the struggle.
While you once looked in the mirror with loathing and disgust, you now look in the mirror and see your best friend staring back at you.
While you once were going to extreme lengths to change your outward appearance, you now only work on doing what is best for your optimal health.
While you once settled, you now have raised standards.
While some may state that this is conceited, it is extremely necessary that self-love and self-care become daily practices.
If you are single, then self-love is your highest priority. It is easy to fall into the trap of constantly questioning why everyone around you is seemingly able to find love, while you are always struggling with it. It can cause you to find faults within yourself and highlight insecurities instead of provoking love for who you are.
It can cause you to settle for the first person to come along that shows interest. The first spark that you feel with someone else can feel like potential for a serious relationship. Sometimes, however, a spark is just that – a spark. It burns brightly for a split second, then it dies.
We want to believe so badly that that spark is what we have been looking for, so we try to force a connection with someone who may not be a good fit for us at all.
It’s like we try to squeeze this person into a mold of what we want them to be, but no matter how hard we force it, they will never fit. The fear of being single is so strong that we would rather settle for a once brightly lit spark that died out fast and is now nothing but a cold pile of ash.
This is because we don’t love ourselves enough to turn down those that aren’t a good fit for us.
We have this notion that being alone is a negative thing. Yes, humans are social beings and are not meant to live alone forever. However, being comfortable alone is how to find love with someone else that you so desperately crave.
The fear of being single can be overcome when we genuinely enjoy being with ourselves. We have the confidence that someone else will eventually come along because, hell, we’re a catch. We are the complete package and anyone would be lucky to date us.
We will eventually find someone who is compatible, who speaks a complementary love language, and that treats us how we deserve to be treated.
Self-love teaches us that we can’t imagine settling for a spark when we deserve an eternal flame.
It is one of the foundations for fulfilling relationships, alongside feeling safe with your significant other.
The love that you feel like you have been missing your whole life isn’t the love you receive from a relationship, but the love you give and receive yourself. Then, when somebody else comes along they only add to the existing love you already hav