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Loving Ourselves as We Love Others

On Friday our 6B class completed our Junior School’s Indigenous Seven Grandfather Teachings in assembly. Their topic was love and they chose to focus on love of family, friends, nature and self. The girls’ presentation was excellent and, as was the case with our other assemblies, I left feeling inspired. The most poignant spur to action came as a result of the girls’ Mindful Moment.

With permission, I have included the Mindful Moment script below, and encourage you to consider using it as a reminder to love oneself as much as one loves others.

I’d like you to close your eyes and keep your mind clear. I want you to picture someone in your life that you deeply love and respect.  This is someone who could be a family member, a friend or a mentor. I’ll give you a moment to picture that person.

Picture yourself standing beside this person.  Imagine putting your arm around them and telling them how much they are loved and respected by you. Picture them smiling warmly back at you. What kinds of feelings does this evoke?

Now, I want you to replace this person you love with yourself.  Imagine putting your arm around your own shoulder and saying how much you love and respect yourself.  Is this easy for you to do? Does it feel a little more difficult?

Why can we so easily praise and love others unconditionally when many of us find it difficult to do the same for ourselves?

What if, right now, as we are still imagining ourselves standing beside our other self, we made a promise?  What if we promised to judge ourselves less and love ourselves more?

We often love others, including their imperfections, but we must learn to do that for ourselves.  We will all make mistakes; we will all struggle at times or not feel at our best, but we must learn to accept that as part of being human.  We need to learn to stop being critical of ourselves and remember how much we all want to be loved. Start with yourself. Love and respect yourself, and others will follow.

In your mind, give yourself one warm, accepting hug before we finish our moment.

At St. Clement’s we are surrounded by wonderful friends, colleagues and mentors, and we appreciate them tremendously. Let’s make sure we appreciate ourselves just as much.

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