E J is a therapist and counsellor with Holistic London, specialising in relationships, emotional difficulties, and discovering life purpose.
For information about his work, visit here.
For one of the books for summer reading, my attention was caught by the recent book by Louise Hay, celebrated author of a number of books about healing, and founder of Hay House, a top holistic publisher.
Louise’s most recent book is “Mirror Work”, and she reports the message has been essential for her success and wellbeing. So, of course, I was intrigued.
The focus of her book is simple but essential: In the end, the thing that matters most is how much we actually love ourselves.
As the old saying reminds us, we come into the world alone, and leave it alone. How we are with our own selves is bottom line.
The point is unavoidable. Sure, it is wonderful and important to love our spouse or partner; to love our children; to love parents and extended families, communities, country, fellow humans. And to love God. But if we have love for all of these, and yet do not love ourselves, what is it all worth?
It’s interesting to note, occasionally a book about loving ourselves comes to my attention, and yet, in ratio with all of the other books in the stores, these are quite rare. Lots of books on attracting a mate, but little on how we are with ourselves. How interesting, a focus on loving ourselves is either not interesting or is just not considered commercially viable!
Perhaps this theme is not widely broadcast because it is, somehow, considered suspicious. To love our own self? How selfish! How narrow! How, uh, anti-social! And, perhaps because of these very attitudes, how difficult…
Louise then makes a prescription, which many may find reprehensible: Stand up, go to a mirror, and tell yourself: “I love you. I really really love you.”
Simple, but for many, perhaps seemingly impossible or unacceptable. For myself, I tried this first thing in the morning, looking into my pair of tired eyes, and had trouble getting out the words. It seemed so unnatural, and I was not sure I believed it.
But, good news, Louise’s book is a 21 Day Program, so we get more than a second chance. So, on Day 2, I returned to the bathroom mirror, looked squarely in my own eyes, and repeated the statement. That I really do love myself. Whether our culture says is ok or not. Whether I want to believe it or not, that is how it is going to be.
And interestingly enough, by around Day 4 or 5, I noticed a shift. I found myself a bit more resolute, a bit more solid about saying it. And a lot more willing to shift my focus to the seat of my own true power. There I was, meeting myself in the mirror each morning.
I am not yet through the 21 Day program, but have started to recommend this book to friends and clients. And so, I offer it to you, for your consideration. To me, it represents our first and final destination.