Learning How to Love Ourselves
In last week’s post, we talked about some of the difficulties many of us have in loving ourselves. As one commenter noted, our actions often revolve around other people’s expectations. That is, we try to meet those expectations in order to gain their approval. This doesn’t leave much time for taking care of ourselves.
Those of us who have been on a spiritual path for any length of time know how much work is involved in changing our views, thoughts, and behavior. With some experience, we sometimes learn what works, and what doesn’t work. Unfortunately, by the time we learn what does indeed work, we’ve already put in a lot of time in effort.
In this post, I’m going to share with you a very powerful and effective exercise I recently discovered, which can change a lifetime of unwholesome habits in a just short period of time. That exercise is called writing meditation.
Now, this writing meditation is not the same as others you may have encountered. Most of the others revolve around some form of free-style writing of what is on your mind at the time. This writing meditation is nothing like that. In fact, it is much simpler.
In our writing meditation, all you do is copy by hand in a notebook the affirmations that were developed for a specific purpose. The loving-kindness meditation works extremely well for changing our attitudes about other people. Through the meditation, we become more loving and compassionate toward everyone we encounter, or have encountered in the past. The writing meditation has a wide range of benefits:
- Heals the wounds from the past. As we become more loving and understanding, we’re able to forgive those who have harmed us, including ourselves.
- Become more outgoing. Our new attitudes about other people will manifest themselves in our interactions with them. We become more sociable and outgoing.
- Enhances our spiritual development. As we engage more people in a positive manner, we receive the spiritual nourishment we need to grow.
- Helps us sleep better at night. When done before bed, the exercise will quickly calm down your mind after a hectic day of activities.
- Learn to love ourselves. The writing meditation will transform our attitudes about ourselves. We’ll finally realize that we are just as deserving of our love as anyone else.
Probably the most amazing thing about this writing meditation is that you will realize these effects without any conscious effort. The only effort involved is in doing the writing meditation for 10 to 15 minutes a day.
The reason this writing works so well is because it literally imprints in your mind the ideals of unconditional love. I’ve found that writing it out by hand is much more effective than simply reciting or listening to the loving-kindness meditation.
Try the exercise for a few days, and share your results with us. You can download the loving-kindness writing meditation with instructions at:
Loving-kindness writing meditation
You’ll see for yourself that it only takes a few days before you start to see noticeable results. I’m sure it will help you learn to love yourself more, and others also.
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