Are you listening?
Flashback to when I was 30 and living on a paradise island in Hawaii. I was surrounded by beautiful friends, and I had just started my company, Zenziva. I was also in what appeared to be the perfect relationship.
Under the surface of all that perfection, I was inexplicably heavy hearted. I was far away from my family and the man I had been with for 6 years was also unhappy. Something was missing from my life and I knew what it was, it was something I had always longed for, always dreamt about…
My inner voice kept whispering ever so silently, what about me? What would it be like if you loved me as much as you love him?
Intuition is an inner knowing
I knew I did not love myself. I knew it from my insatiable desire to always escape the parts I hated about myself. I knew it from the deeply upsetting emotional triggers that would bother me for weeks or months on end. I felt rage, disappointment, jealousy, and confusion about life in general, deep in my bones. I knew I had work to do on myself...
I also knew it was possible to love myself but I had NO IDEA where to start. I for sure was super attached to the relationship and knew very intimately all the suffering that came with even the idea of losing the man.
I also knew this was a part of my journey, this desire to truly love myself in an unconditional and absolute way, but I was in major resistance to it. That would mean I would actually have to spend time alone.
Intuition and love
I had never been without a man in my life, ever. I was born boy crazy and would just go from one relationship to the next, never pausing to reflect, get to know myself, or even honor the transition time.
Listening to my intuition would mean I would have to be alone and for who knows how long! It was a risky choice, choosing myself— How long will it take to learn to love myself, I thought. My mind trying to negotiate a time frame where I would then be able to indulge in my usual comfortable patterns.
My relationship experience beforehand was always about loving my partner, it was like I could not love both him and me at the same time. I would completely sacrifice myself and bend over backward for the man, his happiness was always my ultimate concern.
Damn, it was so hard to leave him, my physical body wanted to run to him every day and yet my intuition kept saying— let him go, babe, let him go. I let the tears runneth over for years for that beautiful man. The suffering of that loss was no doubt the worst I have ever gone through.
Now on the other side of it, it was so worth it— I WAS SO FREAKING WORTH IT!
The other day self actualization became my reality as what my soul has been yearning for, for the last 5 years has indeed come true! While driving, I realized that I do now love myself like I love him. In fact, I love myself way more than I love him. Because of course I still love him and always will!
What does self love feel like?
It is a totally different kind of love, like an upgraded sparkly version of gratifying love. That level of love that you can feel for another is such an amazing marker for the level of love we can experience with our own heart.
I have been given so many opportunities to follow down that same path over the last 5 years and each time I keep choosing myself and damn has it paid off. That is the beauty of self love, when you are truly on your own side and love your own heart, you check in with yourself and ask— is this what I truly want? If the answer is no, you just say NO.
All these years of learning to love myself have been anything but easy. However, over time I have cultivated the most incredibly intimate AND rewarding relationship with my inner being.
The exact way that I would treat my partner, or trust his advice, I now experience that level of care and trust with myself. I too didn't believe it either when I would read about self love being so incredibly fulfilling, so life-altering, so unbelievably satisfying!
It is hard to put into words the feeling. Everything I used to be so dependent on from another is now readily available to me, from myself. It is like an artesian well of love that just keeps producing, providing— a truly endless supply of love, with no fear of it ever drying up or going away...
This voice of love within me is now directed towards me and has my best interest at heart. This kind of shift into radical self love is totally worth it. Befriending yourself, being accountable to yourself, validating yourself, frees you the fuck up to do whatever you want with your life!
When you truly love yourself like you love your partner, that's when you’ll know you've made it
Forever grateful for the time I have put into this relationship with myself. Who I was 5 years ago is such a far cry from who I am now. If you too have a deep inner craving to love yourself as deeply as you love your partner/besties/ect, please know it is 100% doable! You can do this and I am here for you!
I know that not everybody’s journey includes wanting to love yourself unconditionally. Such a beautiful part about life is that we all have such unique dreams to offer, to actualize and realize. My dream has officially come true, and I'm like NEXT, what else do I want?
Can intuition be developed?
YES, ABSOLUTELY! I believe there are many ways to develop your intuition. We all experience this struggle of not trusting our intuition until we can loosen our attachment to using our logical mind to navigate our decisions. It takes practice to shift into listening to your heart and learning to trust it. This is the PERFECT opportunity for you to start tuning into your heart so you can start to discern the difference. Simply put it is an inner knowing that you can trust without a doubt.
Over the last 5 years, I have cultivated a variety of self love practices that have significantly expedited my personal development. With practice and over time you will begin to easily discern the difference between your mind (fear,) and your intuition (love.) Navigating your life from your heart is the easiest way to follow your destiny, to live in your truth. You can discover these practices for yourself in my e-book, the self love guide.
Please comment below + share your thoughts, and pass it along to anyone you know who might benefit💗
Written with love by— Andrea Berset
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**This article is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment, and should never be relied upon for specific medical advice. This article is for informational purposes only, even if and to the extent that this article features the advice of physicians and medical practitioners.