052: The Foundation of Self-Love

In Podcast, Self-Empowerment by Robert KandellLeave a Comment

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Welcome back to Tuff Love with your host, Rob Kandell. In this episode, Rob is dealing with the emotion of his father being in the hospital. He had a small stroke the day before this episode was recorded. Rob’s Dad has been an ox in terms of his health for Rob’s whole life. He’s been solid and strong, and the first time he’s in hospital. You can prepare as much as you like but life still happens, that’s the beauty of it.

This experience ties in to the topic of the show, which is self-love. Believe in yourself every single day. Every moment of your life is totally valuable and if you don’t treat every single moment as valuable, and just think ‘I’ll do it tomorrow’, that tomorrow may not come.

Rob also saw on Facebook this morning that the son of a friend of his died after taking LSD, having a violent episode and being shot by police. While this is a weird downer to the self-love episode, it’s still important because each day of your life is valuable. When we think that our lives are not valuable, that’s where we lose time and opportunities. If you’re not happy with your life, do something to change it.

The greatest self-love you can do is get off your ass, confront the problem and do something about it. It’s foolhardy to think that we have plenty of time. It’s up to you. You are in control of your own life. You may think that you’re trapped by your circumstances but you always have the opportunity to change, if not the circumstance, your relationship to the circumstance.

Rob shares his thoughts on this topic of self-love:

  • The greatest piece of self-love is to remember this: you do have the power to change your relationship to your life. That comes from telling the truth, first and foremost to yourself and then to the circumstances and people, your job, your parents, your partner etc.
  • Don’t wait for tomorrow because tomorrow may not come.
  • Rob has been kind of cynical when it comes to love and relationships, but the level of love he has for Morgan continue to impress on him that what he knew about love was nothing.
  • He and Morgan were on a trip and Rob was holding her head, and felt a level of love he didn’t know was possible.
  • This show isn’t about romantic love, but Rob has realized that the love he has for Morgan is possible because he loves himself more than he ever has in his entire life.
  • Rob says, “The only way to truly love another is to truly love myself. As I work on expanding my own self-love and self-approval, that’s what enables me to feel the depth of love I have for someone else. Until I work on the self-love, nothing happens.”
  • Do you think you can love someone else more than they love themselves? Rob believes you can love someone to the nth degree, but how much they can receive from you is dependent on their level of self-love.
  • How much love Morgan can receive from Rob is dependent on how much she loves herself. And how much Rob can love her is dependent on how much he loves himself.
  • It’s all about self-love. If you want to learn to be in a loving relationship, stop focusing on looking and finding the one or the thing, and focus on loving yourself. Falling in love with yourself is the thing a lot of people are missing.
  • Rob has been teaching for a long time and is up to 52 podcasts and he’s never talked about the power of self-love. But it’s important.
  • In his research for this show, Rob found a Wikipedia article that says: Self-love has often been seen as a moral flaw, akin to vanity and selfishness. Psychologist and social philosopher Erich Fromm proposed that loving oneself is different from being arrogant, conceited or ego-centric, meaning instead caring about oneself and taking responsibility for oneself.
  • The social meme of society is that self-love is vanity and selfishness. It wasn’t until 1956 that someone said, ‘hey this is the thing we need to do to take care of ourselves.’
  • The way the world sees self-love is that it’s arrogant and ego-centric. Rob’s opinion is that it’s totally fucked up. If you think loving someone else is the most loving act, Rob thinks you’re wrong.
  • This is complicated when it comes to parenting. Being a co-parent with Morgan has taught Rob a lot.
  • Rob has seen that the way Morgan loves herself is through her children. It’s how she can bypass sickness and feel love inside of her. It twisted Rob’s view around service and taking care of people.
  • Sometimes self-love isn’t about doing the healthiest thing or the smartest thing, it’s about doing the thing that connects you to the core of your love.
  • We can’t ever know self-love or self-care completely because it’s a formula that keeps changing but we can learn from our experiences. Sometimes you have to go through some really shitty experiences to learn what the most self-loving thing is.

Rob found an article in Pyschology Today with 7 tips for self-love

  1. Be mindful. Slow down, be aware and deliberate.
  2. Act on what you need rather than what you want.
  3. Set boundaries.
  4. Practice good self-care. Sleep well, eat well, take baths, journal.
  5. Protect yourself, from people who suck your energy.
  6. Forgive yourself. Be willing to say your fuckups are your lessons.
  7. Live intentionally.

In general, he likes these tips, but Rob disagrees with number 2. Of course take care of your needs, your basic foundational pieces. But actually go for what you want. If you want to have an experience, create it, go for it. Look at your desires, explore your desires and be willing to have your desires. Self-love is saying, ‘this is what I want.’ Ask for it, have it, be it, love it. Love yourself and love what you want.

Rob coaches Kelly around the areas of her that aren’t being loved at the moment.

Her relationship to self-love is building. For her it’s similar to self-acceptance, but ultimately it’s her greatest challenge and one she feels will be ongoing.

  • Self-love is not widely accepted in Kelly’s culture. People call her a hippie when she mentions it. Rob says, congratulations, because Kelly has gone against the cultural tide in exploring self-love.
  • Kelly is finding work challenging in terms of self-love. It’s a lot of triggers and barriers to self-love at the moment. She took a job out of her comfort zone, however going into a job with little experience is pushing all of her buttons in terms of wanting to people please, wanting to avoid failure, wanting to get it right etc.
  • Kelly is asking for support, and feels she is being perceived as not being good enough, which taps right into the thing she already doesn’t love about herself.
  • She has realized she needs to stand up for herself, which is scary because she’s never practiced self-love in that way before. To stand her ground, point out where people are taking advantage and ask for support, is a challenge at the moment.
  • Money and culture are the reasons she isn’t getting the support she has asked for.
  • Rob recommends pulling the lens back and reminding herself that for some reason, Kelly has decided to climb this mountain of putting herself in this situation where self-love has been challenged.
  • Rob says taking full responsibility helps him accept and forgive himself. When he feels victimized by his own choices, that’s where things are more difficult.
  • Kelly is going to be fairly creative when she gets back to work in terms of what she can do for herself and to seek other forms of support. However she feels a sense of injustice and anger that she has to do that when there is a duty of care that her bosses aren’t fulfilling, and she wants to fight.
  • She wants to tell them that they need to do better, but that is also avoiding dealing with taking responsibility for where she could do better.
  • A lot of this stems from other times where Kelly didn’t feel supported, like childhood.
  • All our wounds happen when we are younger, and then we get older and have experiences that open up those wounds again. We put ourselves in situations to complete, to heal the wounds from our childhood.
  • So Kelly isn’t angry at her bosses, even though they merit it, she could hypothetically be angry at her parents.
  • Rob recommends being aware of what she needs before she does the teaching workshops. Really increase the selfishness and self-attention prior to those sessions.
  • Continue to combine and connect the current angst with the childhood angst. Look at it like healing this part of the self.
  • Ask for help, continue to do so. That support system helps and enables you to be more forthright and open.
  • Kelly realizes she doesn’t really know herself so in terms of falling in love with herself, she needs to get to know herself first.

Rob suggests thinking of herself as a dynamic entity, constantly evolving. We often feel betrayed in love because people change over time. But evolution is a beautiful thing, so fall in love with the process and evolution of you. That’s more achievable as well.