The Practice of Building Self-Love

Growing in unconditional self-love is a practice that requires energy and commitment. We can’t expect affirmations to magically cure us of our self-hatred, or abstaining from our addictions to fix our relationship with self. The practice of building self-love is one we’ll have to dedicate ourselves to if we want to recover. Addictions and mental health issues often grow out of deep self-hatred and fear of inadequacy. When these feelings are allowed to continue, we can develop all kinds of neuroses and complexes that rob us of our inner peace and tranquility. Many of us reach a point in our lives where we simply can’t take anymore. We can’t sustain the inner turmoil and obsessiveness, the anxiety and constant self-doubt, the judgment and feelings of worthlessness. When we finally get to that point, we know that we have to go inward to find the solution. We have to learn to love ourselves.

Every time we practice self-care or give energy to our spiritual practice, we’re taking important steps in the process of building self-love. Everything we do or don’t do is a reflection of how we feel about ourselves. When we prioritize our well-being and make choices for good health, we’re growing our self-love. On the other hand, every time we give into an addictive urge, or go back to that toxic relationship, we’re telling ourselves something about our relationship with our inner selves. We’re letting ourselves down. Essentially we’re telling ourselves that we don’t matter, that we’re not worth the hard work or the effort to get better. Small steps add up, though, so every time we go to a meeting, or see our therapist, or check in with our sponsor, we’re practicing self-love. When we make the decision to get help, when we reach out for support or check ourselves into a treatment center, we’re sending ourselves the message that we are important, that we are worthy, that we deserve health and happiness.

What things, both big and small, can you incorporate into your routine? What elements of self-care have you been neglecting? How long has it been since you made time for your spiritual practice? Think about the things in your life that make you feel good about yourself, and commit to doing them more often. Maybe it’s making time for a long walk by the water. Maybe it’s committing to a daily meditation practice. Perhaps it’s visiting an old friend you haven’t seen in a long time, who helps remind you of how special you are. Whatever these self-loving things are, give more time to them. Commit to the practice of building your self-love, and watch as your new relationship with self paves the way for a healthy and successful recovery.

Riverside Recovery is here to help you find what works for you in your recovery. You don’t have to go it alone. Call (800) 871-5440 today.