Women (and men) can discover what are the keys to loving themselves in so many different ways. In fact the journey of love is all about what is your way that works for you. What teaches you to love? Did you have a particularly hard relationship that knocked you off your balance and then you found an inner power that you did not know before? Did you lose a parent and find that all the expectations you had about life — were not actually true.
What you can discover is that love and finding love is about creating a deeply authentic understanding and relationship of who you are and what love REALLY is for you. And not what the media and social media want you to think love is (or make you feel guilty about because you are not in some ideal romance). By a certain age, it gets really tiring to still be measuring yourself by some social media icon. And for future generations, it's important for older women to start modelling not caring about what others think about their bodies — as younger women and girls are having more and more pressure to look good physically from the social media representation of girls.
One of the reasons I am so passionate about teaching on self-love and creating loving relationships is that I know how debilitating a woman can feel when she is not in a relationship. But it all starts from when a young girl starts to become more dependent on her joy by what other people think about her — and how she looks. And this starts in puberty — and can start even before when the girl feels she's not likeable based on some asset of her appearance or personality. But puberty really messes things up by adding in hormones and obsessing with how much we are liked by someone or accepted by our peers.
In my journey to deeply satisfying self-love, I discovered what was making me create negative experiences in my love relationships with men.
It was a very old habit of looking for the man's approval of me — to prove to myself I was 'enough "and attractive to their liking. I could never be enough when I was looking for approval outside of my body — and I became more and more dependent and scared about not being thin enough or looking like what society would call attractive.
The path I found to embracing who I was and to stop looking for approval outside of me was by discovering the power of sensuality and feeling deeply in my body. Most people when they think about feeling deeply in the body — will think of two things, sexual arousal and emotional depth. Sensuality is the bridge between emotions and sexual arousal. And in fact, without sensuality, sex is just a physical exercise.
Practicing the power of connecting to my senses allowed me to find the joy of my body that was not dependent on what anyone thought about my body. And it is so important these days to know that what you feel with and inside your body is so much more connected to who you really are. There are more and more expectations being put on women to look good, be successful and be these very unreal ideals of what a woman (and young girl) should be. And those expectations are only going to become more extreme.
So by tapping into your senses, your sense of what feels good, and makes your body come alive — you can practice focusing on what you feel as the biggest priority — and break the chain of thinking you should be what others want. Whatever you can do in your day with your body and imagination to practice feeling your body throughout the day is a powerful balance to the more mind-based way our society forces upon us in school, work — and even play. I add in some play in day — every day — like playing with my body with music, dance, and meditation to feel more of my body internally.
And if I am short on time — I just add a healthy dose of silly faces, laughter and joking especially when people are too serious — usually by asking them how they feel too. People open up so much, when they realize I am more interested in what is inside of them — and they begin to relax too (and even laugh and have fun!). In a time-crunched world, you can actually change your attitude — to being more interested in a person on the inside — and a whole new way of playing can open up! This is also how the senses open up — with that old-fashioned "sixth sense", which by the way is not about seeing dead people — it's actually about feeling people's feelings.
When you start a journey of finally accepting yourself you will discover that if you truly want to stop depending on what others think and say about you and your body, you need to shift your focus to what makes you feel alive internally and sensually — and also you will automatically from doing that — shift your entire perception of what love is for you.