Radical Self-Love

I don’t believe in New Year’s resolutions.

More often than not, they lack passion and vision and try to fix something on the surface level, seen in how quickly “resolutions” end by the psychological roadside, as we run off to the next diversion.

I do believe, however, in using the New Year as a way of looking at the previous calendar year, with all its arbitrary boundary designations, “day, week, month,” taking assessment of what was and what might be, and setting a theme for the year.

I decided to devote this year to radical self-love, in thought, word, and deed.

This is on my vision board, and for those who read these sporadic entries, you know that self-love has been a life challenge.

Shame in many, many forms being a defining life circumstance, and moving the lens from the “out-there” where shame begins, what other people think, to the inside, where self-love begins and is nurtured.

The gift of shame is the privilege of moving into radical self-love, not just any old series of platitudes and ceremonious gestures that may make me feel better.

Radical self-love, a huge shift in every thought, word, and deed I express, and it means growing in ways that still remain elusive.

I don’t want any old domestic circumstance, I want the love affair of a life time.

That love affair begins with me.

As I meditated this morning, something nudged me to look at my vision board, and I saw the new year’s affirmation there in big bold letters: RADICAL SELF-LOVE: THOUGHT, WORD, AND ACTION.

Now, what I knew when I pinned that saying to the board was that it’s a phrase, an idea that hasn’t been unpacked.  What does radical self-love really mean, beyond the idea?  Even love is a problematic term, so where and how can I begin understanding this year’s governing aspiration?

I believe I received a snippet this morning.  As I looked at the phrase, it occurred to me that it means not worrying about getting anywhere, that is, once again, the idea of being Present.  Present, in the moment.  Completely and fully.

It’s the journey, not the destination.  Love is the journey.  Radical self-love is the unfolding moment, not something that’s going to happen by the year’s end.

It’s this entry, these words, the workout this morning, the business calls this afternoon, the writing later on, the kickboxing class in the evening, the encounters with friends who make my life meaningful and beautiful.

It’s showing up in the moment, fully invested in who I am, and giving life my everything, with less diversion, fewer bad stories, and much more engagement than I believed possible.  That’s getting close to radical self-love.

I’ve written on this many times, but as one goes down the road, it unfolds with greater depth and clarity.

Do what you do with Presence, because when you are fully there, you are radically loving yourself.

Presence dissolves the subject-object divide that tells us we must do more, be more, and must meet those goals if our contribution will matter, one of the biggest self-loathing myths present in our collective consciousness.

Presence is the deepest connection to Self imaginable, our deepest expression lived in absolute surrender: the mind still, the spirit free, and life becomes what some have called the Kingdom of Heaven.

The first week after I devoted this calendar year to radical self-love, I saw something extraordinary, and it keeps coming to me in ways that echo before things I’ve written here: “you’re making it [life and its many aspirations] way more difficult than it needs to be.”

Or, put in a more self-loving way: the life we envision for ourselves is easier than we allow ourselves to believe, because it’s unfolding in front of our eyes, if we are Present and engaged with life, in the moment.

I hope 2016 unfolds with easy grace and clarity.

Peace and abundant love and health to you.

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