I have found that there is only one thing that heals every problem, and that is: to love yourself. When people start to love themselves more each day, it’s amazing how their lives get better. They feel better. They get the jobs they want. They have the money they need. Their relationships either improve, or the negative ones dissolve and new ones begin.
Loving yourself is a wonderful adventure; it’s like learning to fly. Imagine if we all had the power to fly at will? How exciting it would be! Let’s begin to love ourselves now.
Here are 12 Commandments to help you learn how to love yourself:
1. Stop All Criticism.
Criticism never changes a thing. Refuse to criticize yourself. Accept yourself exactly as you are. Everybody changes. When you criticize yourself, your changes are negative. When you approve of yourself, your changes are positive.
2. Forgive Yourself.
Let the past go. You did the best you could at the time with the understanding, awareness, and knowledge that you had. Now you are growing and changing, and you will live life differently.
3. Don’t Scare Yourself.
Stop terrorizing yourself with your thoughts. It’s a dreadful way to live. Find a mental image that gives you pleasure, and immediately switch your scary thought to a pleasure thought.
4. Be Gentle and Kind and Patient.
Be gentle with yourself. Be kind to yourself. Be patient with yourself as you learn the new ways of thinking. Treat yourself as you would someone you really loved.
5. Be Kind to Your Mind.
Self-hatred is only hating your own thoughts. Don’t hate yourself for having the thoughts. Gently change your thoughts.
6. Praise Yourself.
Criticism breaks down the inner spirit. Praise builds it up. Praise yourself as much as you can. Tell yourself how well you are doing with every little thing.
7. Support Yourself.
Find ways to support yourself. Reach out to friends and allow them to help you. It is being strong to ask for help when you need it.
8. Be Loving to Your Negatives.
Acknowledge that you created them to fulfill a need. Now you are finding new, positive ways to fulfill those needs. So lovingly release the old negative patterns.
9. Take Care of Your Body.
Learn about nutrition. What kind of fuel does your body need in order to have optimum energy and vitality? Learn about exercise. What kind of exercise do you enjoy? Cherish and revere the temple you live in.
10. Do Mirror Work.
Look into your eyes often. Express this growing sense of love you have for yourself. Forgive yourself while looking into the mirror. Talk to your parents while looking into the mirror. Forgive them, too. At least once a day, say, I love you, I really love you!
11. Love Yourself … Do It Now.
Don’t wait until you get well, or lose the weight, or get the new job, or find the new relationship. Begin now—and do the best you can.
12. Have Fun.
Remember the things that gave you joy as a child. Incorporate them into your life now. Find a way to have fun with everything you do. Let yourself express the joy of living. Smile. Laugh. Rejoice, and the Universe rejoices with you!
Now that the Supreme Court is considering the issue of affirmative action in college admissions, all kinds of groups are weighing in. But we’re not hearing from the people who will be most affected by the court’s decision: college-bound teenagers.
The teenagers we talked to attend two suburban high schools near Washington, D.C.: One is majority black and the other school has a mix of Latino, black, white and Asian students. The 16- and 17-year-olds knew little or nothing about the case that’s before the Supreme Court — Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin — or about Abigail Fisher, the young woman who sued the university back in 2008. Fisher was denied admission because, she argued, the university wanted more minorities and she was white.
So here’s the question we asked the students:
Should College Admissions Decisions Take Race Into Consideration?