Self Love- My 20 Day Challenge

what we Think becomes a part of who we are 1

Today is the second day of my 20 Day Challenge. The first day of my challenge was pretty good. I read a book, watched the movie Tamasha, played with my son and also told him the story of The Ramayana. Phew!!! Great achievement. I also ate no sugar but couldn’t manage to exercise as I am down with cold and cough.

Today as part of my challenge, I wish to write about self-love. Most of us are so busy loving others that we often forget to love ourselves. Many of us do not even know how to love ourselves. We were never taught to love us.

In our culture we are taught since childhood respect elders, love your neighbour as thyself, care for the poor, love your kids etc. However, are we ever taught to love our self? I do not know about others but I know that nobody ever taught me or told me to love myself and thus I grew up with absolutely no love for myself.

My biggest tutor in life was Bollywood movies and in those movies also I always saw the girls loving others more than herself. We grew up learning that we need to be selfless. Self-love was often equated with being selfish. However, being selfish and having love for self is a completely different thing. Selfish people are those who only care about their needs and demands, they are often narcissist and demanding but self-love is loving yourself for who you are without feeling guilty. To put it simply, loving yourself is when you create positive thoughts about yourself and those positive thoughts are also good for other people, being selfish is when you create negative thoughts, and they are good for yourself and bad for other people. A selfish person will always want others to appreciate them whereas self-love is appreciating yourself irrespective of what others think of you.

When I was diagnosed with interstitial cystitis at that time I interacted with naturopath doctor online. After examining me the doctor told me that the root of my disease was in my lack of self-love. At that moment I felt confused. I honestly could not understand what she meant by self-love. Don’t we all love ourselves? However much later I realized that I was too critical of myself. I had a lot of unaddressed issues that had created low self-esteem in me.

My mother was a sweet lady but in her parenting style, she believed that if she praised me too much then I would get spoilt. As a result, she never praised me and always pointed out my flaws. She did this with good intention, however, I grew up believing that I have no good quality and whatever happens is my fault. Many Indian parents of our generation did the same. What we think about ourselves gradually becomes a part of who we are, it becomes our personality.  Therefore the naturopath asked me to start unlearning. He asked me to make myself a priority, to start praising myself. In the last few years I have made quite a few changes and today I am more accepting of myself. I feel calmer and more satisfied. I have become more confident ever since I accepted myself for who I am. Today I preach the mantra of self-love to others with the hope that people will benefit from it and our society will become more acceptable.

 

18 thoughts on “Self Love- My 20 Day Challenge

  1. Esha M Dutta says:

    I cannot disagree with you on that, Tina—our society does not teach us self-care and self-love. We hardly ever had any good role models while growing up to realise why self-love would have been necessary and how it was needed to strike a balance between what we are what others expect of us. So glad you are doing this for yourself and good to know you had a good day doing things that matter the most. Nurturing the self and being kind to oneself is probably never spoken about, but one that we need to do on a daily basis. Keep up the daily blogging and enjoy the quality time you are spending by yourself doing things you love. Nothing quite as magical as the words #iamenough! Loved your post, T.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Kalpana Manivannan says:

    Such a heartfelt account. Resonated with me so well. And it is so true that our up-bringing is such that selflessness and putting others before us is the greatest virtue and to think of ourselves is selfishness. I completely agree with you on this. And that has cost many millions in our generation to suffer from low self esteem and self worth. No good seems to have happened. Hope we understand the difference and learn to love ourselves.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. the bespectacled mother says:

    Hugs hugs and more hugs. The bit you talked about the relation between interstitial cystitis and lack of self love is so true. I have seen my mother suffer from intestinal ulcer in her 20s because of the anger and other negative emotions she harboured in herself. One thing I knew about how to deal with my life was to calm down my own anger towards the situations and people in my life because if I didn’t it was going to eat me up too from inside. I am not 100% successful but I am working on it. I owe to noone when it comes to learning self-love. I have learnt it by practicing my spirituality and by bonding with internally stronger women from the blogging world.
    I hope now that we know self-love, we are able to teach it to our kids as well.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Balaka says:

      I agree Anamika, we should teach our kids self love..all my life I have struggled with low self-esteem. I definitely do not want my son to go through that.. even today I am always critical of myself..I don’t want my son to be like that

      Like

  4. Modern Gypsy says:

    I couldn’t agree more. Most of us have grown up not knowing of self love and self acceptance. And a lot of people mistake it for just superficial spa dates and the like. But it’s so much more than that – it’s about first and foremost accepting ourselves for who we are. That makes such a huge difference in our quality of life!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Balaka says:

      Couldn’t agree more Shinjini.. spa and botox is not self love.. infact it is just the opposite..self love is accepting ourselves with all our idiosyncrasies..thanks for visiting dear

      Like

  5. Sonia Chatterjee says:

    I grew up in an environment where my parents, specially Baba was always very vocal in his appreciation. Till date, I feel my self confidence stems from those words of encouragement. My husband grew up in a way where my father in law was always critical of his achievements. The intention was to make him do better but he has a lot of self doubts within him. I read out your post him. He’s like ‘are, eto amaro jibon kahini’.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Balaka says:

      Ha ha ha… I thankfully had a father who was always appreciative and encouraging, so things got balanced 😁😁 but many parents from our generation believed that bacchara adore bandor hay..ei tension ei tara ador korto na ba beshi proshongsha kortona.. takhonkar bangla cinema gulo bhabo sekhane baba gulo kemon chilo

      Like

  6. Natasha says:

    I grew up getting appreciated and motivated by my father a lot. Ma on the other hand was always over critical of me, though saying good things behind my back.

    I get what you are saying here. Ma’s intention was not to demotivate me but to do better for myself. Little did she realise it deflated my feeling worthy of myself.

    I’m grateful to Babi for always instilling so much confidence, self-love and belief in myself. Ma taught me so many other things which are way beyond exemplary. So I guess balance barabar! :)))

    Liked by 1 person

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