Why Is It So Hard To Love Ourselves?

girl holding a glowing heart

What is love?

From a very young age on we learn that love is something we can give to others and it is something we receive from others. We don’t usually learn about loving ourselves so the habit of doing so is never properly formed in the first place. And then we have parents. Ideally, they take the responsibility to teach us about the world and prepare us for life. Inevitably they fall into the reward and punishment method – tending to reward us with love when we meet their expectations and punish us when we fail to do so. We learn about the concept of being a lovable person by seeking to meet other people’s expectations – making people proud and happy to be loved in return.

Selfish vs. Selfless

One of the biggest lessons our parents teach us is to not be selfish. My parents and teachers preached: “I comes last!” We always have to sacrifice our own happiness for the happiness of everyone around us if that’s for the greater good, this is what defines a good person – and this is why the world is how it is. Indeed.

If it was so good to always put ourselves last it’d make us incredibly happy, wouldn’t it? Yet so many people are constantly complaining about the sacrifices they are making for others, never having the strength or time to pay attention to themselves. Maybe it’s courage they are lacking. Courage to look in the mirror and be happy about who they are and what they do. Oh what, they aren’t happy you say? … Right. It’s hard to be happy and love yourself when all the big decisions you’ve made in life based on other people’s ideals and expectations.

It is what it is: a social standard.

But funny how, if you step back and look at it from another perspective, the constant effort of keeping a selfless image, in essence, is the most selfish thing one can ever do. Besides, being selfless never buys you the right to play the victim and cry about how you always are the one who comes short. Especially in the case of parents, where parents expect their children to make sacrifices in return – it’s not about selflessness.

You see, people don’t care about being selfless as much as about making others think and say that of them. Everyone wants to be a good person. Yet it is in our nature to be selfish. Personality tests are so popular because people want to know more about themselves. Why would that be the case if we all were truly – selfless?

So how do we love ourselves?

The only thing standing in the way towards self-love is the mental block of “allowance” or “approval” to go and explore ourselves, the world and make personal decisions based on our own likes and wishes, regardless of what other people think. What are you afraid of? Others laughing at or scolding you if you make a mistake? Mistakes are inevitable in life. Make your own and learn from them rather than regretting the mistakes others have led you into.

 

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32 thoughts on “Why Is It So Hard To Love Ourselves?

  1. In my opinion, society is programmed NOT to love ourselves. At least, not for who or what we are. The commercials that tell & sell approval; make-up, clothing and other forms of status. There aren’t many commercials that say; “feel good about yourself whether you buy our god-awful expensive jeans OR the ones from the thrift store… What matters is you!” You are correct, “acceptance” is the biggest block to loving our true selves.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, that’s what it is: a programming. I didn’t look at it from the commercial perspective but you’re right – the media also plays a big role at how we see and perceive ourselves and it’s easier to make money off of people’s insecurities, thank you for the valuable input! :)

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This was an amazing post! Society tends to change us telling you, you did that wrong or you did that right, this about you is good and that is bad. Yeah change is inevitable part of life but most important question we ask ourselves is – when to change? How to change? What to Change? And why to change?
    Never forget you are unique. 😍 love yourself. ♥ xx.
    Ujala

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for such an insightful comment! :) So many questions to answer but it’s good if we can be at such a point where we actually ask ourselves these questions. Many people, you know, don’t.^^ Society seems to chase stagnation because stagnation is considered a safe spot. However change is the natural flow of life and matter! Cheers :)

      Liked by 1 person

  3. WHOA. I loved this. Like wowwww.
    Its true. You spend your entire life on people who don’t even matter to you, people who you wont remember/won’t remember you. Why cant you just take out a small amount of time for yourself and spend it wisely.
    Loving ourselves is kinda hard. There’s not much we can do to impress ourselves, right? Because we know all the flaws that we have but that’s the point. Loving someone after knowing all of their flaws. That’s what love is. That’s when its real love.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That’s some deep stuff right there! You’re definitely right, it IS hard to impress ourselves because we do tend to focus more on our flaws than our good qualities. I wonder what happens once we learn to shift the focus from “oh it’s just another flaw” to “it’s something I can work on” – believe it or not, we can make our flaws shine! But knowing all of that would also mean that we need to accept that there really is no one who could love us more than we could, since there is no one who knows us better than we do. Hope this makes sense to you^^

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Wow :’)
        You make me sound so beautiful to me. I’d love to make my flaws my strengths and not my weakness. I try, too. This is perfect. Thank you :’)

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Well thanks for the compliment, you make me blush xD I’m not a rookie when it comes to writing but this is my first blog. I just checked the calendar – started two weeks ago on here :D

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Whoa. 2 weeks is a veryyyyy short amount of time, you know?
        I started blogging last year when I went through some shit. But I never shared my posts and stuff. Later I realised I could use my blog as a way of learning. And so I started sharing it everywhere. Basically, my actual blogging started this year. 2017, I got in touch with the first few people here.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. It felt longer than 2 weeks though! Yeah, keeping a diary or a journal is quite important if we want to make sense of ourselves I think. Posting publicly just adds the benefit that you can help other people and receive valuable feedback you can then focus on and learn from. Win/win for everyone involved :D

        Liked by 1 person

      5. You’re welcome, I’m looking forward to read your blog, always! By the way, someone just told me that we need to link to a post instead of the blog and then the person will receive a notification! Seems the mystery is lifted :D

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for stopping by, I’m glad this post is of value to you! Don’t get discouraged by the slow process, the journey is more important than the result right now. We can still say, at least you’re on it, right? :) Cheers!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. “What are you afraid of? Others laughing at or scolding you if you make a mistake? Mistakes are inevitable in life. Make your own and learn from them rather than regretting the mistakes others have led you into.” This is going into the list of my favorite quotes….. A very true post! Since I am free today I am going to spend my time reading your very genius posts…

    Liked by 1 person

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