Building Self-love as a Home Base

Divine LoveSelf love is one of those amazing things that even when you know how vitally important it is, it’s still easy to overlook.

The ripples run deep, through every aspect of your life, and the act of self-love has so many layers.

It’s not just about your body, it’s about your mind and spirit; it’s about your home, your bank accounts, your possessions; it’s about the work you do and how you do it; who you invite into your life; the list goes on.

It’s only when you begin to consciously focus your energy on self-love as an act, or a series of them, that it reveals its complexity.

I was recently part of a series exploring the energy of home, and I came to the discovery that the place I truly feel at home is wherever I am. If I am fully present, fully engaged with my life, no matter whether I’m living in a mouldy caravan in Dorset or a beach-side apartment in BC, I am at home. It’s a feeling of being fully present in my body – the home my soul has chosen for this incarnation.

As I delved further into this energy, I was saddened to realise I haven’t always treated my home very nicely.

In the past, I’ve taken my body and its amazingness for granted too many times. I’ve hated it, abused it and given it away far too readily. I just assumed it would carry me through whatever trials I threw at it, not feeling it was necessary to lavish love on as I went. I didn’t truly see it as my home – I felt I HAD no home, and my spirit drifted around looking for a place to take root.

All along, it was there for me, offering its strength and solidity to me as a place to BE.

It sometimes takes being faced with harsh realities, like when you look at your body in the mirror and see the scars and remnants of what used to be, to see the truth.

It sometimes takes waking up with a pain where there wasn’t one before, or lagging energy, to realise this beautiful body you’ve been given is the one you’ve chosen, and the one that houses your soul. That’s huge. And it deserves a medal.

If you can learn to love your body as your home, you’ll find self-love is an act of celebration and gratitude. It honours the journey you’ve been on and the one you plan to continue.

Your relationship with your Self mirrors every relationship you have in life, whether it’s with another being or with possessions. Whatever energy you generate is proportional to the love you feel for your Self.

love.moneyTake some time each day to send thanks to the Universe for your existence, and the fact that you are a part of this incredible fabric called life.

Lavish love on you whenever you have a spare moment: look yourself in the eye and say, ‘I love you;’ give yourself a pat on the back for a job well-done; take a few moments to sit quietly and make a list of your amazing victories; whatever it takes to make you feel that you deserve to thrive.

Then step out in the world as a Divine reflection of that Love for others, knowing that no matter what, you can go ‘home’ to you any time you want.

Here’s an exercise you can try, to get comfortable with the idea of loving you:

A sonnet by Elizabeth Barret Browning came to mind as I was contemplating this topic, and I’d like to put it to you for consideration.

As you read it, imagine that you’re speaking to yourself, counting the myriad ways you could love YOU. Read it to your toes, your ears, your heart, all the bits that make you, you.

Read this sonnet to your body and soul each and every day, feeling the ‘depth and breadth and height’ of the love that’s possible. Feel the words as they brush over your skin and your hair. Write new verses, with words that flow from your heart to the rest of you, expressing your love for you in countless ways.

If you can discover this degree of love for yourself, you will not seek it from without, but instead draw to you only reflections of its purity and ferocity. This is what Source wants for you – to feel that intensity of Love and the knowledge it is always there for you.

Always re-align with this well of Love within, and be reassured by the knowledge of its constancy. No matter what external circumstances arise, it is always there for you.

(Excerpt from) How Do I Love Thee? (Sonnet 43)

How do I love thee?
Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of being and ideal grace.
I love thee to the level of every day’s
Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.
I love thee freely, as men strive for right.
I love thee purely, as they turn from praise.
I love thee with the passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood’s faith.

~ Written by Elizabeth Barret Browning, first published circa 1850

Big Love,
~ Jenny

* If you’d like to explore the subject of self-love in more depth, Caroline Kirk of Walking Barefoot has recently published a collaborative eBook on the subject. It brings together 23 women (including me) from all walks of life whose stories reflect their inspirational journeys to finding self-love. Download your Free copy here: Lessons-in-Self-Love *

20 Replies to “Building Self-love as a Home Base”

  1. Pingback: Do You Love You?

  2. Pingback: Do You Love You? - Suzie Theme Test | Suzie Theme Test

  3. Wow! The images of my body/home really took me back to younger days when I was more troubled. I enjoyed this post very much and all of the great reminders you have shared. Thank you!

    • Thank you, Amanda!

      I think sometimes we have to learn how to do things by experiencing how NOT to do things. How much better does it feel to treat our bodies and souls as Divine than as expendable? So much better…

      Thank you for taking the time to read and comment on this!

      Big Love,
      Jenny

  4. Hi Jenny! Your post moved me to tears. I was imagining myself doing as you were saying–loving all of me from head to toe–and felt such deep resistance to it and such deep desire to embrace it. To feel both is amazing progress. Before, my instinct would be to reject the idea because of resistance, but now I realize that my resistance is based in fear. Fear of embracing a world so full of love that it radiates from me. What a strange thing to be afraid of, but it is there and I am working through it. I imagine the day where I look back at this post and realize that I have released the fear and have fully embraced self-love. Thank you for an inspiring post. I’m going to work on your exercises and allow the Universe to guide me to my new reality of self-love and self-acceptance. I’m grateful to have you as a guide and mentor on this journey to self-love. Thank you!

    • Thank you so much, Kelly!

      I tried the exercise myself the day I posted it, and felt the tears flowing big time. I’ve been doing it every morning since, just to keep myself open. And imagine, all the ways we can think up of loving ourselves barely scratches the surface of how many Source could think of. Wow!

      I’m so glad to hear you kept going through the resistance – that truly is key. Resistance is just telling us where we’ve put up walls to keep ourselves safe in the past. As you face it, you gently take those walls down and allow yourself some new freedoms.

      Thank you for your lovely comment, and for taking the time to read this.

      Big Love,
      Jenny

  5. Ohhhhh Jenny, I love what you wrote. This line really resonated with me: “If you can learn to love your body as your home, you’ll find self-love is an act of celebration and gratitude.” Thank you so much for the reminder!! This was just what I needed today.

  6. The analogy between home and one’s body is something that runs through my own Christian faith. Jesus referred to His body as ‘a temple’. I liked that very much and I really appreciated rereading Elizabeth Browning, too – great timing for Valentines!

    • Thank you so much, Bobbie!

      I believe there are so many similarities in people’s spiritual journeys, no matter the external route they choose to explore what God means to them. The teachings of Jesus have amazing wisdom in them, which can be interpreted in different ways by people of all faiths. That’s what is so brilliant about the written word – the way in which it can express beauty and truth in a unique way to everyone who reads it.

      Thank you so much for your comment. I’m glad you enjoyed the sonnet, too. I’ve been reading it every day 🙂

      Big Love,
      Jenny

  7. Beautiful. Last year I read a Sufi love poem a day and allowed myself to receive the beauty from myself. It was an interesting exercise and brought much up to be brought back into harmony. Gentle reminders. Thank you.

    • Thank you, Wendy!

      Your love poetry sounds fantastic – I’ve been finding as I use the sonnet as a prompt to write more verses to myself, I’ve been understanding just how easy it is to not love the little pieces that make me, me. How much can we overlook of our beautiful selves? Focussing so intently on it really brings that to the fore.

      Big Love,
      Jenny

  8. Jenny, I really, really, love this post… it is so true, we can connect home at any stage, in the midst of a crisis, in a spare moment, as refuge when tired.. I love it, as someone who has travelled a lot, I too can find home “wherever I lay my hat” but his is a beautiful reminder that I can touch base whenever and whereever.

    Love how you apply this sonnet to self love, I’ve read that elsewhere on your blog and it really resonated at the time.. how easy we forget.. I will write it out in full view as deep reminder to love myself, in all ways.

    Lastly I love , “It’s not just about your body, it’s about your mind and spirit; it’s about your home, your bank accounts, your possessions; it’s about the work you do and how you do it; who you invite into your life; the list goes on.” I have been writing about the different areas where we could make changes to ensure out self love is holistic ..

    Thanks for your beautiful, loving presence in the book and in life <3

    • Thank you so much, Caroline!

      I’m so happy to be a part of this wonderful project, and I think the best way we can learn is through doing. I haven’t always been so good at self-love, but as I write about it, and begin to see the power it has in shifting the energetic patterns, I want everyone to experience it. I’ve been using the sonnet as a prompt the past couple of mornings, and it’s really powerful. Love has no limits! What an amazing idea 🙂

      Thank you for your wonderful comments, and for bringing this book into being!

      Big Love,
      Jenny

  9. What a profound exercise! I’ve heard this a gazillion times and I never once thought of saying (or feeling) it toward myself! Imagine loving myself with the same vibrant, wholehearted energy that I would toward another. That brings tears to my eyes.

    I will practice presence in my body today. I will give thanks to every moving part, to each molecule that is the sum of me.

    Thank you Jenny <3

    • Thank you, Stacey!

      I was writing extra verses for the sonnet today in my morning pages, and I had the same sense as you – profound. I realised that I could love myself to the furthest reaches of the universe (and beyond), back through time, up and down, in and out, completely without limit. There may have been tears involved 🙂

      I’m glad on this occasion I took my own advice – sometimes I’m better at giving it to others.

      Big Love,
      Jenny

  10. “How do I love thee, let me count the ways”.

    Well, I know that moment, the moment I realized I needed to take care from within was a monumental moment in my life. So many things get in the way, it is difficult to stay in that bubble, but so so worth it.

    I will use these suggestions because I know that giving my body/ cells/ heart good vibrations, I will radiate those back outward in those things I do. There is no better gift to yourself and the world. Thank you so much for that nudge, it serves me well today and always. xoxo
    Amor y luz

    • Thank you, Dawn!

      I know what you mean about that moment – it truly is life-changing. And sometimes it takes few nudges to really listen, or align with what it truly means to take care of ourselves. I wrote a few more verses of the sonnet this morning, and it was so powerful to express my Love to myself. Not necessarily easy, either 🙂

      Big Love,
      Jenny

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