Surprisingly, what I’ve found is that self-love is really the easier of the two. These are the things you do to take care of yourself. That massage on your calendar every three weeks? That is self-love. Self-love might be getting that manicure, taking a walk, spending some time meditating, soaking in the tub. Whatever you do that feels good…it’s all about making the things that make you happy a priority.
Self-respect, on the other hand, can be a little more difficult. It means that you choose the best for yourself even if you don’t really want to. Even though it hurts a little to say, “no”, when you know it’s the right decision for yourself.
Sometimes having self-respect can hurt much more than we anticipate. We fear change or disappointing someone else, so we dumb down our decisions to keep others happy. And change…whoa…usually equals at least a little pain.
Self-respect can require making devastatingly tough decisions. It might mean you have to stand up for yourself when you’ve been mistreated or disrespected. It might mean you have to cut off some relationships in your life. These decisions hurt. They don’t make you happy like getting that massage! But sometimes, they are required.
learning something new
having the high-risk discussion
sending the email
leaving the relationship
Scary. Uncomfortable. But, you do them because you know you’ll be better for it. Maybe you won’t see the results of the good decision to respect yourself until much later.
But know this – it will be worth the wait.
Make the tough call. Do the thing you know is worth it in the long run even though it’s scary. The pain of change is temporary.
Choose the best for yourself.