- Father’s Day Gifts
- Enhance your small talk
- 5 Ways to Stay Positive When Others Are Not
- About the Author
Second, your mind is forced to filter out almost all of the stimulation in any given situation attentional filters. Because of this, your mind has a tendency to view you as being far less intelligent, capable, good looking, charming, and ultimately, worthy of love than you actually are.
Father’s Day Gifts
Simply put, if you are having trouble loving yourself, there is nothing wrong with you. Fortunately, loving yourself is a skill that can be learned and mastered. The first step is realizing the truth about your importance…. Everything in your life flows from your relationship to yourself. Learn to treat yourself like someone worthy of love, respect, and compassion, and your life will flow more effortlessly, abundantly, and joyfully than you can imagine. Treat yourself like someone worthy of contempt, disdain, and indifference, and each day will be a struggle to keep your head above water.
The unfortunate part is that most people never put much energy into their relationship with themselves. They drift through life acting as their own worst critic, working to inhibit their potential, and keeping their hearts and minds guarded. I know that sounds dramatic, but pause for a moment.
If you spoke to your friends the way you speak to yourself in your head, would you have any friends left? Or at a deeper level: have you ever felt fully loved by yourself or someone else? I obsessed over mistakes from my past. I endlessly replayed embarrassing moments while somehow neglecting the beautiful ones. I failed to forgive myself for being a human, a very real part of me wants to be a demi-God.
Long time readers will know that I tackled the topic of self-love several years ago. At the time, I shared everything I knew. The easy path is to distract yourself with drugs, alcohol, stress, white lies, busyness, bad relationships, external validation, and pretend happiness. But doing this makes you more of a cold, unfeeling robot, than a vivacious, hot blooded human. One of my deepest wishes is that you wake up to how amazing and powerful you truly are.
Level 1: the day-to-day. Do you treat yourself like an important person who deserves love and respect, or are you subtly placing unreasonable expectations on yourself? What do your behaviors say about your relationship to yourself? Level 2: embrace your dark side. Do you accept and acknowledge your dark side when it surfaces? Do you embrace the part of you that is pessimistic, lazy, depressed, violent, crude and offensive?
Or do you pretend that everything is rainbows, gumdrops, and unicorn shits. Do you pretend that every day is a good day? To be human is to be stormy and tempestuous one day or moment , and then calm and sunny the next. To pretend otherwise is to deny who you truly are, and denying your truth is an act of self-loathing. Level 3: the deep work. Have you truly seen yourself for who you are? Can you grasp that your imperfections are what make you perfect? Have you owned the reality that life was inflicted upon you without asking and with it came trauma, abuse, disappointment and eventually death?
Do you acknowledge that these struggles will forever shape your life until you confront them and begin the healing process?
Enhance your small talk
You can begin healing, growing, and flourishing now. Doing so requires the courage and clarity to see yourself, so that you may begin the process of tearing down the walls that protect your heart. As you do this you will open to the flow of love and life around you. Level 4: the highest form of love. Every single person was born with unique gifts.
The gifts can be anything from athletic performance, to empathy, to humor, to spirituality, to business acumen, and everything in between. The real work of learning to love yourself is learning to see who you truly are and accepting it all. The highest expression of love for yourself and the world is sharing those gifts freely and abundantly. What follows are guidelines for learning to love yourself. They are the things that consistently get results, laid out in a sequence that is congruent with how the heart and the mind tend to work.
But there is no singular path forward. Your job is to find your path. My advice to you: when you find a step or a suggestion that excites you, experiment with it. See if it opens you and makes you happier. If so, keep working with it. If not, let it go. When you find a step or suggestion that inspires fear, reluctance, or disgust, approach it with curiosity. Instead of allowing intense emotion to be a brick wall, use curiosity and patience to feel through it.
The complicated relationship between feelings and actions. One of the secrets of human behavior is that how we feel and how we behave act reciprocally upon one another. Pause and take inventory of the actions that you perform throughout the day. Are they reflective of the actions you would take if you truly loved yourself? For most, the answer is no. You can take a huge step forward by treating yourself as though you are intrinsically worthy of love.
There is no prescriptive blend of behaviors that works for everyone. However the actions below are unusually effective and worth experimenting with. In fact, they are common. Instead try one or two. Take the risk of treating yourself well and see what happens. When I was living in Montreal, I had a roommate who pretended that every day was amazing. She said she loved God, loved life, and felt grateful just to be on Earth. There was a huge disconnect between the stories she told everyone including herself and her reality. She wanted every day to be bright, sunny, and joyful.
Look to nature. Even the most beautiful, ancient forests are sometimes struck by lightning and burnt to the ground. At first glance, this seems like tragic, wasteful destruction. The fire destroys the forest; the ashes feed the soil; the soil provides a stronger, more nurturing environment; the forest grows back more radiant than before.
Beneath the pain, darkness and destruction rests a quiet core of growth, love, and beauty. This is true of a forest, and this is also true of a human. To step fully into the human experience you must embrace the darkness. At a more mundane level, it means realizing that suffering is part of the human experience. To deny your suffering is to deny your humanity.
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You are a human. The second level of learning to love yourself is embracing who you really are. Cast away the societal bullshit of trying to be happy and content every second of your life and step into the greater reality of being honest about who you are and how you experience life. By doing so, you will create space to give and receive love. Doing this requires being honest about who you are, and that means embracing that you have a shadow side. Have you ever felt fully loved? We live in a world that values a head far more than it values a heart.
The only way a heart could survive is to protect itself with thick walls. The third and most difficult step involves finding, accepting, and removing the walls that protect your heart. I had a huge blind spot around being a child entertainer, that I simply could not have seen without a talented professional. Begin by digging into your life story. The easiest way to do this is to create a space where you can express yourself freely.
I suggest either writing in a journal or engaging in a verbal monologue, out loud, to yourself. Your task is to tell your life story from start to finish. Keep a photo of yourself as a child nearby while you go through these exercises. As you express yourself, go out of your way to be honest, vulnerable, and forthright. Lean into your rough edges, your humanity, and your rawness. One of my friends is a survivor of repeated childhood sexual abuse.
Worse still, her parents were aware of the abuse and did nothing to stop it. A few months ago, I was sharing something with her about how terrible it was being a child entertainer. Until that moment, I had been a victim of myself. For years, I had been telling myself that doing magic shows before my 18 th birthday, at the expense of my childhood, had no negative effects on me.
The truth is, I was wrong. My past was affecting me.
5 Ways to Stay Positive When Others Are Not
It was a big deal. Trauma and pain can be caused by obvious things like being raised by abusive parents, subtle things like a cruel word, and everything in between. Where it comes from is not a reflection of your worthiness, strength, or ability as a human.
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As you embrace this, you will start to feel an opening. The deep work of learning to love is done by shining a bright light on yourself and accepting the truth about things that happened in your past. I am tempted to picture a fully formed, loving human as someone who lives in total bliss. Fawns eat from her hand and humming birds land on her shoulder to share their secrets.
To be human is to be both stormy and sunny.
It is to always be moving through the levels of self-love and self-compassion. There will be times in your life when it makes sense to do the deep work. Take those opportunities when you can. There will be times when you can feel — and even influence — the flow of the world around you. There will be times when stress catches up to you and even your favorite person pisses you off. Having a shitty day? Accept that. In one of those stretches where everything you touch turns to gold?
Use it for good. Your ultimate work in self-love is simply this: step fully and boldly into your life. When times are tough, be gentle on yourself. When times are good, relish them. Share your gift. When you do this, everything in the world will burn brighter because of you. Learn how to find trust in your own inner voice, connect to your innate confidence, and more fully step into your life. You'll also get exclusive content and updates on new articles. Pingback: Calling my shot… Jason Connell. Pingback: How to handle the emotional chaos of change Jason Connell.
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Pingback: Escaping the prison of unworthiness Jason Connell. Pingback: The emotional imprisonment of the modern male Jason Connell. Pingback: How to make hard conversations easier and why I had five in one day Jason Connell. Thank you so much for writing and publishing this. Vivienne — this note means the world to me. Thank you. Good luck on your journey. Hi Jason, Everything you said was on point.
Perfectly worded, and really connected with me. I have a lot of trouble with consentrating whilst reading and always get distracted easily. You are unique and very talented, you have connected with so many people and inspired people by being raw, genuine and wording things perfectly as if you have an amazing understanding of how we feel You truly have a gift and have given me a brand new outlook.
About the Author
And I appreciate the affirmation more than I can tell you. Im so happy to have you as a reader, and grateful for this note. Thank you so much for years I have not been happy as a child I took care of my mother who was had a manic depressive disorder, missed out on my teen age years and did not have a chance to go to university. I have done very well for my self but never felt really loved thank you I think your article is very well written and has inspired me to be who I a warm caring person with more empathy towards human suffering than most folks on the planet.
Your path has been a tough one — needing to take care of the person who was supposed to take care of you is really, really hard. Pingback: On finding the strength to get back up Jason Connell. Bravo, and welcome to your new life. This is a wonderful article. You should make into a little booklet.
I would buy some, keep one in my purse and give some to people I love! Thank you! The thought alone makes me smile…. I was lucky to have found this article as I start my journey. Very supportive and beautifully honest and frank. Thanks for sharing this knowledge with me Jason, you are part of my life changing journey. Chris, whoa. This is awesome. Honored to be part of your journey my friend. Just drive your bus and make it a great ride.
The fact is negativity is all around us. You must remember that your positive energy must be greater than all the negativity. As country wisdom suggests, "Never wrestle with a pig because you'll both get dirty and the pig likes it. Positive energy is much more powerful than negative energy. If you stay positive, the negativity can't touch you. Be The Seed - When you plant yourself where you are, with a desire to serve and make a difference, you will create very positive conditions for your growth. You'll be amazed at how others start treating you more positively when you approach your work with a service mindset.
They will sense something different in you and they will change the way they behave towards you. I encourage you to read The Seed and let the growing process begin. It could be one of my books or a book from an another author. There are many great books out there. I've received countless emails from leaders who received The Energy Bus , Soup and The Carpenter from their employees and it changed the way they lead.
Best of all, this change in leadership spreads throughout the organization. So don't think you can't change your situation or organization. You can. I'm convinced that very few people want to be negative. Most people are negative because of stress, busyness, and fear. This is exactly the reminder I needed. I seek another solo traveler.
Yes, we cannot lead a normal life, so seek a birds of a same feather. Normal life? Please…might as well be dead. Nicely written and so true. I do NOT agree that solo travel makes a person undateable — unless it made that person so picky about people that they are doomed to loneliness. If anything it opened my mind and gave me more confidence in my dating life moredateable. I can see the point of this as I have been living abroad and travelling for over a decade.
I do connect will well travelled ad interesting people. Most of my long standing friends in England have traveled a lot and we take a keen interest in each others stories. A well rounded and mature person should not look down or think they are in some way superior to those who have a less adventurous lifestyle. That is a recipe for loneliness. Solo travelling is a nice experience and every one should consider travelling alone at least once in their life, but there are many different ways of travel that offer so much fun and learning..
Travel can reinforce your love and connection with your co travelers. Solo traveling sounds in this article as a way to be emtionless and anti social or dating incapable. Really a great and beautifully put down. It feels like we are a new specie knowing where the escape door is from society strangles Thanks for the amazing article.
Love how you write. Been a solo traveler for a while. It should make you more open minded and then you can talk to anyone. Just my opinion. Interesting article and whilst lots of it rings true, aspects of it is incredibly pompous. Being alone is great and I love getting to know myself. But there are times that I would like a potential partner whom I love to come with me so we could experience and grow together.
Being middle age and have been and continue to be a solo woman traveler, there are too few people that can relate to what you experience. Embrace your travel friends, in the moment and cherish them in your heart. It takes banality to realize the variety of humanity.
You must admit that there is more to life than travel, and that everyday non-traveling people have valid, nuanced, perspectives. Thank you for the insights. Well written and I think you are right. I have found solitude to be the best companion said an author. But when I come across people, booze me up and get me high. And yes I view it as stuck in a conditioned box that a week hiking and camping in a half man tent when reading and writing in my journal at 9, feet exhausted freedom.
This terrifies so many, the sneaker hikers as well put and society in general. Very few venture outside the exhibited touristy areas. And almost all relentlessly take photos of everything and everyone they see and clog the newsfeeds of your social media with them. Are we supposed to pretend that these people are better than the people who live and work every day? I travelled enough to learn that life and people are no that much different around the world. Maybe I have been in situations where my life was in danger and i dont want to make those stupid decisions again.
Maybe I want to save my money for something more fun than staying in a rat and disease infested hotel in a poverty nation. Maybe I view impulsive decision making as a problem rather than fate. I think that if you are a solo traveller you are more aware that you need a life partner who wants to travel as well. In fact, you dont waste time with anyone who cant understand you.
Very well written! Why the need to put down and denigrate people who made other choices? Not so black and white, some travelers learn a lot, and some solo travelers mostly want to get wasted with other English speaking travelers at the hostel.. Everyone has a story. We share the world with equals. The privilege, entitlement, and self-righteousness of this piece is frankly disturbing. No one is better than anyone else. If you had truly travelled the world and realized your own humble place as a visitor to these other cultures and societies, not to mention on Earth, you would understand that all individuals are worthy of respect and should be treated thus in both word and deed.
This post is narcissistic and close-minded and ultimately reflects the dangerous side of travel, travel not as a positive way to get to know the world but as a neo-colonial predation on it. Acknowledge your own privilege and be kind to humanity. I think some may be offended by the bluntness of certain statements regardless of their validity though. What a pile of wank! Nicely written article I am sure a lot of solo travellers can relate to.
I was able to reflect upon my own journey and felt a lot like this in many different aspects. So, travelling does not only set you free but widens your perspectives, your believes and helps you to look underneath the surface when it comes to making new friends or meeting your love! Very well written article, all the best! I have lived and worked abroad in different countries for almost ten years now. During my journey, I have met people who have never left their home countries and yet are amazingly open-minded, free-spirited and enriching.
On the other hand, I have met people who have traveled the world and made an impression on me as dull as dishwater. I have also worked in touristic cities and hostels for many years, and the rattling on about endless lists of countries and touristic attractions people have been to and plan to visit, ritual of many backpackers, has often bored me to death, especially as many of them do not seem to really learn anything about or connect to the culture of the places they travel to, and do not even have the wish to do so. Now, depending on the type of lifestyle you choose, you may crave a certain kind of entertainment, and routine may make you uncomfortable.
If you are this kind of person, many people you meet might not provide you with the kind of entertainment you seek for your life, thus, bore you. I just think that solo travel is only one of many different factors that can, but do not have to, make you feel that way. At 72 and freshly retired I have just completed my first solo travel 90 days! Oh how I can equate with the concepts and statements of this marvellous essay.
And I met so many living examples of whom it is written to too. Solo travel let me see the difference in the men in different countries and experience different passions and cultures. Solo traveling let me also appreciate my family and friends the more when your ready to go back home. Solo traveling gives me a break and those in my environment a break.
Solo traveling has also showed me that I attract different men from different countries and that I am date able. Do not listen to those who are trying to say negative things about you and your experiences, you are honest and saying things others are afraid of, that is all, thank you for this. It is my second year in Egypt, I love it and there are things that changed my life and made me and my life very different. All the best.