To be or not to be … that is the question. So folks here is a pondersome idea.
I am working on one of my biggest projects – besides living that is! This project is very close to my heart. It has elements woven through every session I facilitate; every challenge I and everyone faces. Every path, every moment of every day we will encounter this essential aspect of life yet
even though this aspect of life is eternally present it is the last thing we think about.
What is this? It is SELF LOVE. I realised sometime back how much this is ignored in life to the extent that we tend to judge that those who practice SELF LOVE are more often then not rather selfish. This bad press of self love is one of the reasons most of us refuse to practice it.
So as I create one of my most challenging and powerful projects in many years, I have been pushing myself to seek out all areas where I fail to practice Self Love. Continuing to advocate the benefits of self love if I am not fully embodying and walking my talk kinda contradicts my message and coaching.
Coming across the ways in which I judge, criticise and limit myself, I notice many little quirks. One that has been a slight battle for me is the should I or should I not conform to the popular idea that Make up makes the whole world a prettier place?
I have concluded that yes, make up does refine the image it makes one feel more confident, more capable, lovable, stronger, special, etc but I have been battling with myself as, most people who know me personally will testify, I prefer to be “au natural” on a daily basis, please take me as I am. Make up, for me, is something that comes out every so often. I do not essentially think its a bad idea, especially if you are using the natural products becoming more popular daily, but it is not and has never been an essential of daily life for me, a daily mask to present myself to the world. So to that extent I carried out a mini experiment for myself. My mind chatter talks to me about being “correctly presentable” to the world when I do my Facebook live meditations etc. and for many years I have had a battle with being seen let alone being seen on screen without makeup.
In a process to accept all of me I have presented some of my Facebook live free meditations without any makeup and some with varying degrees of make up. I have noticed that the ones where I am made up to the hilt get more views as well as likes and the ones where i appear “au natural” get fewer views. Now this may all be coincidental but I have arrived at a place where I realise I am liking being seen without makeup – it is who I am and in doing this exercise i am coming to a greater liking if not fully loving myself yet. Which was the real aim of this exercise as part of the process of learning to love and accept myself just as I am, giving permission and courage to myself where I need it to improve or simply accept.
The questions I would like to put to you is:
As a person who comes across a photo, video or image of someone without make up on is there something in you that feels uncomfortable?
Do you find yourself judging this person’s image? Can you simply be with that discomfort?
Can you see beyond the image and see the message of the person rather then the image of that person?
Would you be able to be consciously present to what thoughts come up for you when you see someone without makeup being publicly visible and even courting attention?
If these thoughts make you uncomfortable, can you challenge the beliefs and ideas these thoughts are mirroring from within you?
Self love to me is being able to understand, love and accept all my imperfections unless I know that that particular imperfection in thought or behaviour is not serving me in which case it is about bringing the courage and support to affect a change for bettering myself.
Similarly we could extend this out to seeing people with disabilities or injuries. Can you sit with them and not feel responsible for the collective shame of the world or collective responsibility of the world at somehow having failed these individuals?
This topic of Self Love, as I said has threads weaving through every aspect of living. We could debate on and on, but breaking it down to how you present yourself to the world without the collective judgement being your benchmark of “looking good enough”, will help you come to terms with any aspect of yourself that you are holding hostage without love. I wish you love.. tons and tons of Self Love.
Please do let me know what these thoughts bring up for you. Feel free to share and feel free to subscribe to my newsletter. I would love you to be involved in the ongoing conversation as well as actively practicing Self Love. If you are interested in my forthcoming project which will include live workshops in various cities, online downloadable courses, my book guide to Self Love as well as my personal coaching sessions, do subscribe or get in touch.