Self-love, even self-acceptance, is an act of resistance. It is a resistance against a system designed to make us hate ourselves. To make us believe we are not enough. This is a system that thrives on the marginalization and oppression of some and the privilege of others. In order to maintain the status quo, it must convince us that we are not worthy of love. That our self is not enough. Once we feel this way, we do not question our place or what is done to us and others. This is a system that has a vested interest in making us hate ourselves. A system that makes us believe our worth is conditional on who we are; what we look like, who we love, our bodies, our fuckability. So they can sell us products to fill the void they have created. Those thoughts you have on the reg, you know, the ones that tell you you need to be perfect. That you are not enough. That you aren't worthy. Yeah, those ones.... Those are not your thoughts!
Use Self Love to Escape The System
These harmful thoughts have been dictated to you by this system. Engrained in your brain. So much so, that half the time you probably don't even notice you are having them. But they are most likely driving the bus.
You are probably going about your day, unaware that these thoughts have crept into your consciousness. Unaware that they have created feelings you don’t want to feel, which has caused you to do things you don’t want to be doing, which is creating a life you don’t want to be living. The good news is, you don't have to keep these thoughts. You get to choose what thoughts you want to keep. Decide what thoughts you want to have. And this is what I mean when I talk about empowerment. That is why loving yourself, even accepting yourself as you are, is an act of resistance. You are defying everything you have been trained to believe. You are challenging the status quo - the same status quo that convinces you to hate yourself.
You are saying that despite all the garbage you have been fed, you are choosing to love yourself. You are saying that you are enough, worthy of love, just the way you are. The ultimate f-you to the patriarchy.
Loving ourselves is one of the most rebellious things we can do.
But.... how do we learn to self-love instead?
This process takes a lot of unlearning. Relearning. Trying it again. It takes getting up every day and trying to be gentler with yourself. It is hard. But it isn't as hard as hating yourself. Loving yourself, or even getting to self-acceptance takes time. It takes patience. It takes following these steps:
Noticing those thoughts that have been engrained in your subconscious.
Processing the emotions that these thoughts bring up.
Choosing new thoughts that create new feelings, that get you closer to your goals
Practicing them over and over again. It’s like a rewiring of new pathways from old ones that were really deeply entrenched.
If this is something you are struggling with, or would like some help with, reach out to me at email@example.com or send me a message on IG @olivevontopp. With the right tools, you can escape this harmful cycle and live the empowered life you have always dreamed of.