By Sherrie Campbell, Ph.D.
Why loving yourself is the most important quality of determining your happiness in life.
We should all look into the mirror and see our beauty instead of our flaws. We should give ourselves credit when we accomplish something and pat ourselves on the back when we do something kind for someone else. We should start loving ourselves. If we do not love ourselves we cannot have any hope for having positive, loving and/or reciprocal relationships. We often go into relationships on the search for love, without being conscious of the fact that what we need to do is bring love with us. We must bring a strong sense of who we are and our sense of purpose in life. We must bring a genuine excitement about our sense of value and all we have to offer. We must bring a passion for our own lives into the relationship and have the vision of what our life and love can be. We must bring all of this because love is to be shared not taken.
If we come into love feeling whole and in love with who we are, then the relationship is likely to work if our partner is able to share at the same level. Love begets love. If we have love to share we increase our love for ourselves. If we do not possess this type of self-love then life becomes about lack. We see love as offered in quotas where there is only so much to go around before there is none left.
To love ourselves we have to find the meaning in our suffering. If we can do this then we begin to see that others people’s poor treatment of us has much more to do with whom they are than with who we are. Once we get this concept down, we can escape the blame-game and be embraced in who we are as individuals. Each painful experience is there to bring us a gift, and that gift is there to catapult us forward with more self-love and awareness into our next phase of life and relationship. If we can see our pain as having this purpose then we are no longer a self-loathing victim but rather a wise hero/heroine who knows that all that happens is for us to become better people.
All positive and healthy relationships are essentially born out of relationship we have established with ourselves. Oftentimes many of us come out of childhood and other relationships lacking in self-love and are filled with self-doubt falling in and out of love that doesn’t seem to work or last. We must find the path to learning to love ourselves so that we may find lasting love in our lives with healthy limits and a healthy sense of our own individual happiness.
About the author:
Possessing over 19 years of training and experience, Dr. Sherrie Campbell received her Ph.D. in clinical psychology in 2003. While she has specialized in psychotherapy with adults and teenagers, she has also worked extensively with individuals, couples, groups, and families coping with relationship difficulties, sexual abuse, grief, childhood trauma, and sexual issues. She now resides in Irvine, CA, where she is currently practicing as a licensed counselor, psychologist, and marriage and family therapist. For more information visit her at http://www.sherriecampbellphd.com/. Her book, “Loving Yourself” is available at Amazon.com and Authorhouse.com.