Have you ever noticed how really little kids aren’t yet self-conscious? They aren’t!
They are present. They live in the moment. They are honest (oh-so honest sometimes!!) and they are real. I believe the word that comes to mind is authentic.
There was a time in all of our lives where the thought that we might not be good enough had never crossed our minds. Seriously…there was! We never even thought about our worthiness, because the fact that we were perfect was a given.
I like to think of this time as “pre-conditioning”. It’s an interesting thought to think that you came into this world not so much believing you were perfect, but just never, for one second, thinking you might not be. The concept would have just been absurd!
Sadly, it seems that somewhere along the way, we all lose our way. We forget who we are.
We get conditioned, or taught, false beliefs that we believe to be true because we don’t know better (yet!). We buy into the pain, judgment, and criticism that we hear, see, and absorb from the world around us, and next thing you know, we have abandoned ourselves and our truth about who we are for the belief that we aren’t good enough. Remember, kids make everything about them – even when it isn’t. Personalizing (ego-centric identification) is just part of that developmental stage.
It is as though we trade our love for ourselves for the need to fit and external measure of what we think others need and want from us. I think we all do this to some degree. Some of us have absorbed pain that has caused us to detach more than others, but the forgetting is a human experience. The question is, can we find our way back to the truth we once knew?
I think we can.
Each of us has within us the memory of our own wholeness. We have the sense that we are better than we give ourselves credit for. The only evidence I need for this is the sadness and emptiness we feel when we believe that we are not good enough.
If our not being good enough were truly valid, then it would feel ok – in sync with our truth. But the belief that we aren’t good enough isn’t true, so we feel awful when we believe it.
I’ve heard it said that embracing your worthiness isn’t about creating a better you as much as its about peeling away the layers of dirt and muck that surround the perfection that has always been there.
I totally agree!
Take a moment to reflect on yourself as a small child.
What do you remember about yourself?
What did you love to do? How did you play and explore?
Try to focus on yourself as a child through the eyes of love, especially if this was a time of pain in your life. Remember to see it with objectivity, and try not to judge, but just explore your memories with curiosity. Any judgment you put on it will be a conditioned belief.
The hope is to just see it and say – “you know, that was me, and that was pretty cool” so that you can reconnect and remember your essence. When we do this, we establish compassion and kindness and embrace ourselves with unconditional love.
And, at the end of it all, that’s all any of us really want, don’t you think? To know that we can be ourselves and be loved, without condition, is what makes us feel completely and totally safe and secure.
To that end, your decision to begin seeing yourself with unconditional love is the greatest gift you can give yourself. Start soon, engage often, and never, ever give up on yourself. The rest will fall in place.