The Disintegration of Conditional Love

Loving yourself isn't something that we are all naturally great at. Like anything else in this world, it comes more easily for some than for others. That's just the way things work and love really isn't any different. For me personally, it's something that I have always found incredibly difficult to do. I'm extremely hard on myself and critical that I can always do better. I'm a perfectionist and the type of person who can set a bar to reach but just as I get there and reach it, I have already moved it to the next level. You know, there are lots of reasons why I am like I am, some are experientially related from my childhood, however, a lot of it just has to do with my personality. Either way, it doesn't really matter, the result is the same. I just find it damn hard to love myself. 

For years, I've read books and heard people say that you must do the work on yourself because you cannot love another unless you love yourself. To be honest, that concept alone was just another reason I could be really hard on myself and make myself wrong about. I mean, I've done a bucket load of work and continue to do so, yet apparently, with this concept, my love is still pretty limited. I started to actually think about whether I believe this or not and reality is, I don't. What resonates as true for me is that my love for OTHERS is actually the thing that TEACHES me to love myself. I hope that by sharing this perspective, those of you who don't find it easy to love yourself can let yourselves off the hook and know that maybe your love grows from the outside in, rather than the inside out. 

So, I've never been any different in that I have always had more allowance for others than I do for myself. This being said, it stands to reason that it's a whole lot easier to love others. At times in my life, this has been to my own detriment however it's also the very special part of me that enables me to hold such a strong place for people to reconnect with themselves in my work. I think back to a time, over a decade ago when I was at my lowest. The level of hatred I had for myself, was, on a scale of 1 to 10, about a 50. What I was most frustrated with was that I couldn't express my feelings. I had been taught that there was only one positive emotion and that was happiness and joy, however, I had a truckload of every other emotion spilling out all over the place. I had absolutely no love for myself at all at that time. So with the concept of I couldn't possibly love anyone else if I didn't love myself, what do you think happened? Well, it just made me feel worse and hate myself even more. 

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I think about how I was then and ask myself, did I actually love anything or anyone? With not one ounce of hesitation, I can say YES! At a time when I had absolutely no love for myself, the thing that kept me going was the love I had for my children and my husband. Not only did it keep me going, but it was the love I had for them that actually made me want to feel better about myself. Even more than that, it was that love I had for them that kept me on my healing path, even when it was so very difficult and I thought I couldn't do it, it kept me going. That love that I had for them became my guide and teacher in bringing me out of the darkness I was in and into the light. It taught me to find love for myself again. 

You know this life we are living is fluid. Sometimes we will be up and other times we will be down. It's in those down times when we need love the most, however, it's also at these times that it can be hardest to give it to ourselves. That's not something to punish ourselves about or make ourselves believe that because we can't love ourselves right now, we don't love others. Rather, I like to think of it as receiving the gift of love from others at those times as a guide and helping hand back into the state of being able to have a love for ourselves. And just as we receive that gift from others, we, in turn, are able to give it to others in the times when they don't have it for themselves too. 

Love isn't something that is conditional, however, we as humans are the ones who make it so. Loving others isn't conditional on loving ourselves and it's not something that is fixed either. Like every other emotion, it is energy and sometimes it is bigger than at other times.  By freeing ourselves from these conditions we have been taught to place on love, it allows us to receive and give love in it's purest form just as it was always meant to be.

I'd love to hear your thoughts and if you know someone who you think could benefit from these words, please feel free to share. 

Until next time xxx

 

A Step-by-Step Guide for Finding the SUPPORT you want!

Have you ever been in a situation where you feel like you really want something in your life, however, you just have no idea how to actually get it? I found myself in this situation for years in my business. I was wanting to find a network of supportive women, a community of sorts. I didn't just want to be in a group to BE supported, but also to be able to find my confidence to share and support OTHERS. I would join different groups, however, I would always end up with the EXACT same outcome. I would feel okay for a little while, and then slowly but surely I would clam up and eventually disappear from the group altogether.

What I didn't really understand is what support actually MEANT to me, what KIND of support I was actually wanting and what I NEEDED in order to FEEL supported. To put it really simply, I had never really gotten to understand myself enough to be able to define these things! Kinda sounds simple huh? but you know, in a world full of social media, with pages of people asking you join their communities for support and when you do, feeling the EXACT opposite of being SUPPORTED, you really can start feeling like there must be something wrong with you! Reality is, there's nothing wrong with the group AND there's nothing wrong with you, it's just it isn't the fit you need. Can you relate? How many groups have you joined, communities are you a part of where you just don't feel like you it's the right fit? How often do you fade away into the background?  Well, I have some seriously awesome news for you! Through my many years of discomfort in doing this, I've actually formulated a very simple step by step guide to ensure that YOU are CLEAR on the WHAT support means, WHY you are wanting it, WHO can meet you in this and HOW to find them! Sounds pretty cool huh?! I'll walk you through my steps and show you how I have finally found the support I have been searching for. 

The first step is defining what SUPPORT actually means to you? Everyone will have their own definition of this so really getting clear on WHAT it means for you is imperative. For me, the support I was looking for in my business was a space where I could be myself, where I could express myself in safety without any fear of being judged. Where I could be seen and heard without being TOLD how I needed to be. Space where I could ask for advice, yet be given the freedom of taking the advice that best suited me. Space where that support was able to be received AND provided.

Once you are clear on YOUR personal definition of support, the next step is to answer the question WHY do I want this support. What are you hoping to achieve by having this support? How will it make you FEEL? My why was to feel like a part of something where I could gain confidence in a gentle way, MY way, yet also have the opportunity to really support others as well. To communicate, collaborate, a place where a relationship could be established. 

Next is working out the TYPE of people that are able to support you in the way that you want and need. This is a big one! This really requires you to understand YOU! How YOU work, your personal qualities, what serves you and what does the opposite. So, I know I'm highly sensitive, an emotional empath and can be quite shy. Safety is paramount for me. What I really needed more than anything was to be with people where this would actually be okay. I wanted to be in a community where doing things gently was okay. Where strength wasn't determined by the level of HUSTLE but rather, a softer approach was not only valued but seen as equally strong. 

The final step is HOW to actually find this support. For me, it was reading, learning and listening. Not only from the people delivering content but also from other people's responses and reactions and soon enough, you will get a real clue as to WHO can give you the support you are actually looking for. 

Once you actually have all of this information in front of you... I can tell you that you have your map to find what it is you are after and with this level of clarity... you WILL actually find it if that is what you want! 

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For me personally, I have found and am a part of the Gentle Business Mastermind. The founders Amanda, Nicola and Naomi are like a dream come true for a woman who has always questioned whether she can actually make it in the world of business. The example of doing business gently that serves you in the highest possible way whilst honouring fundamentally who you are is the ultimate display of strength I have been searching for. What has happened for me in having this support by not only these three incredible women but the broader group of amazing, talented humans has been incredible. I've become even more clear and confident in my message of the power of transforming a deep connection with oneself, I finally have some consistency and discipline with my business, I am sharing more and more with people and am confident in this sharing, I'm connecting with a broader audience than I ever have before and I am finally seeing myself as a woman of business. 

 

When you understand YOURSELF and what YOU truly need to FEEL the way YOU really want, there literally is only one outcome available and that is the ability to source and deliver a way to actually make all of this happen!

I hope this will help you in finding the support you are wanting and if you would like your own support to explore and understand what YOU really need, please don't hesitate to reach out to me!

And, to check out the incredible things Amanda, Nicola and Naomi are doing in the world of business in their own beautiful way... the links are below.. 

www.amandarootsey.com.au
www.naomiarnold.com
www.nicolanewman.com

Until next time xx