Together We Thrive: Love Yourself First to Give Others Your Best Instead of What's Left

This Together We Thrive blog post was written by Lebanon-based Life and Leadership Coach, Beth Conger, CPC, ELI-MP

 We’ve been raised in a society that not only never taught, but probably never considered the importance of self-love. And when you even hear the term “self-love” what image comes to mind?  A tree-loving Hippie? A narcissistic greed-seeker? A self-involved human who could care less about anyone but themselves? 

That’s not how I define self-love. I believe it’s about appreciating yourself for all that you are. For your strengths and weaknesses, your fab and your flaws. It’s not about not wanting to improve, but it’s about being comfortable in your own skin. Giving yourself grace when you falter, space to center yourself and breath, appreciation for all that you are and all that you know you can become.

Let me ask you this: How has not truly loving yourself – or even considering the thought – worked out for you so far? Let me guess, you’re always there for others, making everyone else’s needs a priority and taking care of everything else that “has” to be done. You’re so busy that there’s little time left for you, and when there IS time left, you have no energy – you’re drained. When was the last time you thought of your self-worth, what you like – dare I say love – about yourself, or why you matter? It’s probably been a lot longer than the last time you were hard on yourself – beating yourself up for something you did or didn’t do, said or didn’t say. Any of this resonating?

Now, let me ask you this: If you don’t take care of yourself, value and appreciate yourself, who will be there to take care of others in the most meaningful ways? How can you expect others to truly love you if you don’t learn to value and truly love yourself for the amazingly complicated, perfectly unique human you are? If you’re always comparing yourself to others, coming from a sense of lack and need, how can you craft the true and deep relationships you crave? If you don’t truly love and appreciate yourself, how can you truly love and appreciate others?

Here are just some of the many benefits of loving and appreciating yourself

  • Confidence
  • Conviction
  • Humility
  • Empathy
  • Self-worth
  • Increased joy
  • Peaceful presence
  • Positivity
  • Better able to see your full potential
  • Keep depression and anxiety at bay

But in my mind, the biggest benefit of all is your ability to love others more than you could have ever imagined. By truly loving yourself – all your perceived quirks, flaws and missteps – you can love others more deeply, purely and meaningfully. From your partner to your kids, from your friends to your co-workers, to the stranger on the street, you’ll approach them with more patience, empathy, kindness, acceptance and compassion because you have given that to yourself first.

How do I know this? Because a few years ago, I went through the same evolution. I found myself frustrated with nearly every aspect of my life. Everything was fine, but I knew there had to be a better way. I did all the things I thought I was supposed to do leading up to that point, so I knew it was time for something I hadn’t tried before – focusing inward and getting to know my true self and working on falling in love with ME!

I took a hard look in the mirror and, with hard work and over time, learned to stop hating and even begin appreciating all those fine lines in my face – each representative of something I didn’t like about myself. I fell in love with myself in a way that I never thought possible. And all those benefits I mentioned above – heck yes, they’re not only real, they are now embedded in the fabric of who I am.

By loving myself:

  • I have a greater capacity to truly listen when my kids come to me with “world-ending” problems and boundless curiosity and empathy.
  • I have seen my husband with much more clarity than ever before – learning new things about him with every interaction that is strengthening the core of our relationship in powerful ways.
  • I am kinder to myself – more gracious and forgiving of “mistakes,” appreciative of my silly side and calmer in social settings because I’m no longer heavily comparing myself to all those around me.
  • Able to hold a truly judge-free space for my clients to share their situations, giving me the ability to ask questions without bias, deeply listen to the why behind their answers, and connect their statements in ways that lead to breakthroughs and awareness like never before.

Ready to learn more? Join my February virtual workshop, Love Yourself first, a virtual workshop where you’ll explore ways to soften judgement, give your inner-critic a break and fall in love with you. Register today: