There’s an old clichéd saying that goes…”you have to love yourself first, before you can deeply love other people”, presumably, be it your spouse, family or someone from afar. It’s a lovely expression, but worth analysing. Is it really true?
Personally, I find it incredibly defeatist. It’s as if you’re saying you can’t love someone else because you’re not happy yourself. Imagine the damage that idea can do to relationships in which one, or both partners are suffering from low-self esteem or depression!
David: I agree completely. You can certainly feel love for someone when you have no feelings of love for yourself and in fact, it is a device we use in hypnotism to promote feelings of self love… we concentrate on a loved one…and you can try it yourself too.
Close your eyes and imagine some one your truly love… imagine their face turned up towards the sunshine and the wind blowing gently at their hair or clothes. Now, imagine the image of them becoming brighter and more vivid, as if someone is turning up the lights and let that their warmth touch you. Now have them look at you and speak to you…what do they say? “I love you. You are loved. You are special to me.”
This is very helpful across a range of situations and goes to show, you can feel love when you feel no self love at all. That’s why being in a loving relationship is so healthy and beneficial. We are all social creatures and we need to hear that we are loved.