SELF-LOVE MEDITATION:"THE FOUR DECLARATIONS"
The more deeply you understand it, the more you realize that claiming your vast array of strengths, seeing your amazing beauty, validating your own rightness and loving yourself unconditionally- in other words, discovering and connecting to YOU- is your surest road to fulfillment.
Awakening self-love at a primal level takes time, focus, persistence- and the clear realization that nothing else will make you permanently happy!
Think of your body and spirit as a "tuning fork". Doing this exercise regularly enables you to come back to the vibration of self-love and self-confidence more and more easily. Just as Zen meditation re-trains you to drop your thoughts and enter into the present moment, this exercise progressively builds your ability to find and stay centered in your serene and loving self-acceptance. By consistently affirming, encouraging and accepting yourself with this exercise, you will awaken the "inner voice" of Unconditional Self-Love at deeper and deeper levels.
Each of the phrases, while deceptively simple, are emotionally very evocative. Each one vibrates at a frequency that touches the heart and rings through the body and the mind. As you work with them, keep breathing and keep feeling. This practice opens the doors of your heart- to the perfect and beautiful being that is YOU!
1. Stand in front of a mirror. Look yourself in the eye. As you do, imagine that you are the kind of mother or father who is always encouraging and knows exactly what to say. Or, imagine that you are speaking with the love, wisdom and complete conviction of your own soul. The basic concept is that the person in the mirror needs unconditional love and validation and you are going to supply it. As unnatural as this may feel at first, I promise you will get the hang of it very quickly! This exercise works very well when you think of the person in the mirror- the part of you that needs your love and positive energy- as your "Inner Child". Or, on any given day, as the part of you that is suffering and needs compassion and reassurance.
2. As you keep eye contact with yourself in the mirror, one-by-one say these four phrases to yourself. Say them out loud (this is essential) and say your own name (or an endearment such as 'honey' or 'sweety') at the beginning of each phrase. Saying your name and/or using an endearment gets your "Inner Child's" attention and opens your heart. As you speak, look for the vibration of kindness, tenderness and reassurance within you. This is what the wounded/needing part of you needs to hear!
a. "I totally and absolutely love you" b. "I completely believe in you" c."There is nothing wrong with you and there never has been" d. "I promise that I will always love you and I'll never leave you".
3. As you work with each phrase, stay with it and repeat it a few times. Try to find that place in you which passionately and sincerely feels and believes what you are saying. For many of you, that passion and sincerity will be difficult to find at first. This should be compassionately seen as a "wake up call"- that your self-love is less strong and complete than you may have thought. This exercise tends to be "diagnostic" of our attitude toward ourselves, while supplying the right medicine we need to repair and grow our loving self-connection.
4. You may also find that some phrases are easier to say, feel and truly believe than others. There is much to be learned about your attitudes toward yourself by contemplating which phrases are difficult for you- and why!
5. Finding the Special Words You Need: Lastly, say something to yourself that you really need to hear right now. The more you need to hear it, the greater the reassurance and growth that results. Find the words and attitude that are nurturing/encouraging/loving/healing.
Like meditating, praying or doing yoga postures on a daily basis, this exercise when done regularly will create a profound and life-changing effect. It will fundamentally transform and improve your relationship with yourself. It can be done in 5 minutes or can be prolonged and elaborated upon according to your needs. I have found that it can be done at any time to re-connect to yourself in a loving and confident way, but it has special benefits if done at the end of the day before sleeping. The reason is that the love, reassurance and encouragement you give yourself will be "soaked up" and take root in your unconscious mind as you sleep.
Slowly but surely this positive and loving attitude toward yourself outshines and heals your feeling of somehow not being "good enough" and the relentless mental chatter of self-criticism. It also heals the sadness, emptiness and loneliness that comes from not loving ourselves - unconditionally! LOTS OF LOVE- BRYAN
A Note on "Resistance": You may notice from time to time that you have become more reluctant to work with yourself in this way . When this happens (and it almost certainly will) it is usually because you need to ventilate and release the pain that is surfacing as a result of your growing self-love "pushing out" the old sorrow, anger, fear, guilt, shame etc. It was, unconsciously if not consciously, very painful to to feel and think negatively about yourself, so your body and spirit need to release that stored pain. Sometimes you'll start crying and you won't know why , or you'll get angry for no apparent reason . Don't be afraid and trust your feelings. Give them the expression they need and explore them in your journal, in therapy etc. When energy moves in this way, the true meaning is that your work is having a deep and powerful effect. Your love is growing, your heart is opening and your spirit is breaking free.