Learn how to build kindness within
By Dr T J Jordan
We all want to feel safe with each other, but we’re not all equally open to trusting or being trusted.
If trust is difficult for you, you probably struggle with residual wounds from early or prior relationships that were lacking. You might not have a model for becoming sanctuary for someone else if you weren’t able to find sanctuary for yourself.
To provide emotional safety to others, we need to grow within our relationships so that trust becomes a natural part of love. But it all begins with that sticky issue of self love.
Self Love versus Narcissism
The idea of self love scares us because we think it’s self centered and even narcissistic. But being in love with ourselves is neither selfishness nor narcissism.
Remember that narcissism feeds on the use of others to scaffold a fragile ego without concern for the damage done. At its base, narcissism — at least the covert kind — is self hatred. Loving ourselves is the opposite. It’s composed of kindness, compassion, and acceptance.
We can’t go further with our love for others without loving ourselves first.
When we’re busy judging ourselves — and constantly collecting data about our self worth (as in narcissism) — we don’t turn generosity of spirit toward others in our orbits. Narcissism knows only how to use others and how to emphasize flaws, while self love accepts imperfections and provides acceptance regardless.
Self love is the best practice for loving others.
When we’re our own best friends, we can be kind. We can look upon our dark parts with compassion instead of harsh judgment. We can turn to ourselves in times of stress because we alone are in control of our feelings — and we can choose to give ourselves comfort even when others might choose to dole out…