Your Greatest Kindness To the World Might be Kindness To Yourself

When we learn to treat ourselves kindly, we learn to be more understanding with each other.

Every now and then, I remember a younger, more perfectionistic version of me whose relationships felt more like competition than camaraderie.

It wasn’t because I wanted to be a jerk. Or even because I wanted anyone to fail.

It was because I had a hard time believing that, if I was totally honest about my weaknesses, thoughts, fears and shortcomings, I would be met with unconditional acceptance.

The reason I thought that is because I was constantly judging others with the same merciless standards to which I held myself. So, not only was I unhappy with me, I was isolating myself.

That kind of relationship with myself led straight to depression and a support group for people with an unhealthy relationship with food. It can lead all kinds of other places, too.

_If you can learn to love yourself and all the flaws, you can love other people so much better._.png

Turns out, healing my relationship with myself was the first all-important part of the journey toward deep, meaningful connectedness with others.

Why am I telling you this?

It’s not because I’m proud of it, but because if there is anything you’ve ever been ashamed of about yourself… believe me when I say, that very thing can lead you toward Love.

Mistakes, frailties, heartaches, rejection, a riddled past and all the things you wish you could change about yourself... They can either keep you hiding in shame, or they can bring you face-to-face with the deep humility required to experience the miracle of receiving and giving grace.

Before I experienced that miracle, I would’ve told you I believed in Divine Love… I would’ve sworn on a stack of Bibles that redemption was possible for anyone. But when I faced my own humanity with honesty and kindness, I saw everyone - even God - through a different, more gracious lens.

If we say we believe there is forgiveness and redemption for others’ worst qualities, yet refuse to receive them ourselves, we aren’t really trusting with our lives.

Let’s consider the countless ways the broken roads lead us directly toward Love. Let’s not fight those things, but allow them to connect us to ourselves… to one another… and, ultimately, to the very Source of Love.

Today’s Love Better Minute is a challenge to take one simple step in that direction.