“Do you want to meet the love of your life? Look in the mirror.” – Byron Katie
“With every breath, I plant the seeds of devotion. I am a farmer of the heart.”- Rumi
In my first blog of the new year, I wrote about my intention of allowing my beautiful life to unfold, without expectations, savoring the gifted moments as they arise…that beautiful tulip, that kind Starbucks barrista, that steaming cup of tea.
The past few weeks taught me—and it is a BIG shift for me— that every occurrence that arises is a direct reflection of what I feel within. The nature of everything I experience reflects the LOVE (or lack of love) that I have for myself.
I am convinced that the universe that I am witnessing is just a giant mirror, showing me myself and my level of self-love, in infinite ways, at this particular vibration, in this particular moment.
I have really shifted.
First things first. What is self-love? It’s unconditionally loving yourself with compassion, understanding, acceptance of all that you are (all!) in this moment. It’s not the self-aggrandizement that would inspire you to take a selfie because you “love” that you are in Lake Tahoe and want to post it on Facebook. Not at all…that’s your ego, seeking approval outside of itself. Rather, self-love is the love you feel for yourself when you are all alone, have time to reflect on who you really are, your deepest, truest essence, and embracing that.
So how does self-love determine what occurrences arise for you? It’s because like attracts like. Similar energy attracts similar energy.
I was meditating on my love for myself. I imagined a pie in the middle of my chest, and asked myself as I will ask you now: How much of that pie is filled with pure acceptance and unconditional, deep love for yourself? I have asked many people this question, and the most common answer I hear is “a half”. Others have said “a third”. For me, who has been working on self-love for the past nine years, I feel improvement daily, but I am not at 100% either. I have never met anyone that said 100%! We are SO critical of ourselves. We could lose a few pounds, we could have been a better parent yesterday, we could do better at work if we were more focused….it goes on and on. More devastating, we carry around deep wounds from our childhoods, past relationships, and traumas that nudge out self-love.
I believe that because I mostly love myself, who I am and how I show up in the world, I manifest a tremendous amount of beauty every day, most of the time… in the four cheerful workers that planted the new native plants in my front garden last week, in the super loud croaking frogs in my fountain that mirror my soulmate and my search for each other (really kind of funny), in the ideal parking spot, in the perfectly resonating song that my friend sent me, in the overheard conversation that seems to be a direct message to me, in the deep sleep I had last night, in the four-course dinner-for-one that I treated myself to this weekend, in the smiles of my girls on our last bike ride, and in the abundance I have created via my career as a wealth manager. From the mundane to the profound, I believe this is all a mirror reflection of the immense love I have for myself.
But, because I don’t love and accept every part of myself, yet, I also manifest things in my “outer world” that show me what needs to be worked on. It’s uncanny! These experiences shine a spotlight right on it! Instead of annoying and painful, now I see them as an opportunity to fill in that self-love pie. For instance, I still have ongoing diligence related to my health and maintenance, visiting my doctors every three months for check-ups. Even though I have no more pain, I am still taking medication to keep the inflammation down. Can I, (instead of saying, “enough already!”) accept and love that part of myself that is not totally healed, that small shred of dis-ease that is lingering? Last week, I felt a family member was nit-picking a decision I made for my daughter’s birthday–but I was triggered, ironically, only because that critical attention, mirrors what I do to myself! I can be ruthlessly perfectionistic. That was a gift to remind me my own self-judgement! Can you see it? Because I have unloved parts of myself, I come across people like a special, recent connection, who was having a deep, self-love struggle. His struggle was so front-and-center in his awareness, that I couldn’t help but see some of the unloved parts of myself. As I helped remind him of his true essence, I was reminded of mine.
He said to me, in one of the truest statements I have ever heard, “I can only see part of your light, Megan, because it is proportional to the light I see in myself.”
That brilliant comment reminded me that we experience a world that mirrors the love we have for ourselves. The pure bliss, riveting connection and deep love is pure bliss, riveting connection and deep love. No question. However, our challenges are not really challenges, but actually learning opportunities, ready-made and perfectly served to transform those dark pieces so we can embrace all of our self with love.