Are you afraid of love? Do you think it's not possible for you? Where should you start?
Everything that I do is done in love, but it took me a while to understand the capacity and depth of those four letters. See, I was one of those people who always put others first. The one who made an extra effort to be thoughtful, naturally. The one who was always the nicest, sweetest and most caring...but what about me? Who was going to put me first and make that extra effort? Who could I count on to pour into me when all of my energy was exhausted?
That's where I went wrong. I learned that I cannot depend on anyone to do for me what I do for them. Setting those expectations has a reputation for guaranteed disappointment. Instead, I had to look within and see why I was not happy with just giving. Why did I always look to receive after giving so much of me? Why was I still empty when I made sure everyone was happy? Truth is, I didn't love myself enough. Let me explain.
I didn't tend to my needs first. I overlooked my problems and accepted everyone else's as my own - they were easier to deal with. I hadn't healed from the pain in my past and I never intended to. I didn't understand what it meant to fall in love with me and value me. I put me second. I became a professional at covering up and moving on, making sure not to look like what I had been through - and boy was I good. But that's just it! How can you expect to truly experience and accept love when you don't take the time out to love yourself?
Understand your self-worth. Take time to fill your barrow before pouring out into others for consumption. Protect yourself. Face that pain and heal those scars - you can't run forever. Do things that make you happy, often. Rediscover your passion and work to live a passionate life, daily. Fall in love with who you are and choose you, everyday. Never settle or do anything that compromises your value.
Once you fall in love with yourself, you won't ever be drained of your energy for the benefit of someone else. You'll know exactly what it takes to refuel and recharge you. You won't ever settle because you know your worth. No one will be able to take advantage of you because you have put up with way too much and have come so far to back track. You'll continue to give, not worrying about whether or not those efforts will be reciprocated. At the end of the day, you'll have complete satisfaction because you have power over all things when it comes to you.
That's the beauty about life. You are in complete control.
After all, self love is bae.
- Allanté Collier