As I was publishing self-love post submissions yesterday for the 31-Day Self-Love Writing Challenge, two resonated with me and I commented on both.
I commented first on A Terrifying Thought. I commented on a few of the questions the writer posted, but the questions that stood out to me the most were “Is self-love enough? If I achieve this state of grace, is it something I can maintain?”
Below is an excerpt from my comment on the self-love post “A Terrifying Thought.”
“Is self-love enough?”
For me, self-love is everything. If I love myself and if I can live and interact with myself and others from a place of love, then everything will work out, even if my life circumstances are difficult.
“If I achieve this state of grace, is it something I can maintain?”
For me, self-love is a daily practice. It’s something that I need to work on everyday. Sometimes it comes to me so naturally, other times it’s a lot of work. Sometimes I feel like my confidence is limitless, I feel like I can do anything, I believe in myself fully and without reservation. Other times I feel the sting and pull of self-critical thoughts. With my own experiences, I wouldn’t label self-love as a state of mind, but rather a state of being. Happiness, euphoria, sadness, anger, irritability – these are states of mind, but I can act from a place of self-love in any of these states. Life is rocky, it comes with its ups and downs, and acting from a place of self-love will make the ups that much more enjoyable, and the downs that much more easy to get through. Self-love is the rock that grounds me. Self-love helps bring me clarity and self-awareness to make the most loving choices for me in the moment.
Responding to that blog post was the first reminder of the peace that comes with letting go of struggle. Letting go of struggle, this thought has popped up for me throughout the past week, but I keep on pushing it aside.
This past October I wrote a self-love post, “Making Adjustments To Normal,” where I talked about being at peace with my bipolar. I ended the post with:
When I stopped struggling and grasping for what I thought was normal, I think that’s when self-acceptance kicked in.
About two weeks ago I started to struggle again. For the past I-don’t-know-how-many-months something has been stirring within by subconscious, bothering me, but for the most part I have been in a place of balance and peace. About two weeks ago I started cycling again. It has been very subtle compared to how intense I know it can get. There are likely many thought patterns I’ve been fostering that have nurtured the cycling, but one that stands out is my craving for alertness, high energy and focus. I want my brain to feel clear, and it often doesn’t.
Back in October, when I wrote “Making Adjustments To Normal,” I was okay with not having that clarity, and I was able to function well without it.
Last night, I also commented on the self-love blog post “Calling In Ennui.” An excerpt from my comment:
It’s difficult, to not be where I want to be, but it’s good to remind myself how far I’ve come, the balance I’ve created and the tools I’ve developed to deal with the different aspects of bipolar.
From your self-love post, it seems like you’ve come a long way with learning how to deal with your depression and anxiety. That’s something to hold onto. You’ve made a lot of progress in your self-love journey.
That’s something I reminded myself last night. Although I’m cycling again, I’ve made a lot of progress from two years ago. I’m not where I want to be, but I’ve developed a lot of tools to navigate bipolar disorder and I’ve created a lot more balance for myself.
For the past two months I’ve been focusing a lot more on fostering habits that do not trigger my cycling. For the past two weeks I’ve been reflecting a lot on why I started to cycle again, and I’ve developed different thoughts on it. Some self-awareness has come from my reflections, but I also think that my reflecting has fed my cycling.
Thinking about something, wanting to understand something, dissecting something, I think it’s healthy to a point, but it has its shadow side of over-thinking and putting too much focus on the negative aspects that I do not want to nourish.
I’m glad I’ve been thinking things out, but I’m getting tired of all this thinking. I’ve been over-thinking. I’m going to let it go. I’m letting go of the struggle, and I’m going to let peace back in.
– Emelina Minero
31-Day Self-Love Writing Challenge
January is Self-Love month, and it marks the 4th year that we’ve hosted the 31-Day Self-Love Writing Challenge. You can participate by submitting your self-love writing to be published on this blog. You can submit your writing here. You can also participate by writing your self-love posts on your own blog and linking back to the 31-Day Self-Love Writing Challenge, 2014 blog post and Facebook event. If you don’t start on January 1st, that’s fine! You can jump into the challenge whenever you want.
Win a Copy of Self-Love Diet: The Only Diet That Works
Each blog post you write is one entry into our random drawing to win an autographed copy of my book, Self-Love Diet: The Only Diet That Works. You’ll also be entered into our drawing to win our upcoming Self-Love e-products that we’ll be announcing soon.
If you don’t feel comfortable sharing your self-love writing, you can write in a journal or write yourself self-love emails. If writing isn’t for you, simply reading others’ self-love writing can be powerful and beneficial to you on your self-love journey.