Love life to love you
A few years ago I was presented with the theory that if you show appreciation for what you currently have in your world you will feel better about yourself and attract to you more of what you appreciate and love.
I got this as a concept but like most of my learnings it wasn’t really until I truly tried it out that I began to notice a difference.
I’ve mentioned before that I made a decision last year to live a life where decisions were made from a place of love and not fear.
In reality, this meant rather radically changing my approach too much of my thinking in life.
For example,with appreciation and gratitude it was easy to say three things that I appreciated in life, and then swiftly move on to other elements I didn’t appreciate, I love my house, but it isn’t quite as nice as my friends, I really love my business but what if it doesn’t work out. I love that I went to exercise tonight but I only went once this week.
Here was a pattern familiar to many of us, feeling levels of confidence, calm and love which are closely followed by criticism and self-doubt.
The follow up thoughts are what I call the “WHAT IFS” or WHIFF’s (bad smell) as I like to think of them. When I think of these self-doubt thoughts like a bad smell a whiff you can actually picture waving your hand in front of your nose and stepping back from the thought.
Physically stepping away from a negative thought or doubt has an incredible impact on the mind, like stepping away from a bad situation, your kind of saying to the thought, I don’t want to be near you.
To really start with this love not fear I began a love rampage, not just thinking about what I appreciated in my life 3x a day, but using the word LOVE a lot, and I mean a lot!
I went all out and counted how many times a day my sentences began with I love…as I really started to notice a huge difference, a difference which meant I felt love around me and inside me all the time, and on average it worked out about nineteen times a day.
Sound a lot?
This is how it kind of breaks down.
Before I get out of bed each morning I think about the people in my life I love, picture my Dad who lives miles away and say I love you Dad, then I’d picture my Mum who passed away and say I love you Mum, my sister in NZ, my brother, friends.
You can quite easily get into double figures just lying in bed.
Then there are the things you love… oh, how I love my bed, my partner jumps into bed every night and says, God, I love the bed, I love this bed.
I love a smoothie in the morning, I love the radio in the morning…
As well as people, and things, there are things that people do.
I was working with a Director in an organisation who was feeling slightly stressed and overwhelmed. As part of her feeling calmer and connected one of my suggestions was they start sentences with “I love” nineteen times a day and pay particular focus at work to the actions people take in their team. I also suggested they got more hugs (we will come onto hugging very soon).
Three days later they gave me a call to share what had happened as they had consciously started to practice this technique.
In a meeting one of their team, who didn’t attend this particular meeting that often had contributed to the meeting, our Director had caught her as the meeting closed and said I loved your comments there, I really love your thinking.
The lady on her team had said thanks I really appreciate that and looked a little taken aback our Director then said would you like a hug. The answer was yes and they gave each other a hug.
The next day this lady asked for a catch up with our Director and in this meeting she explained, I have been feeling a bit disconnected recently and I’ve not been feeling that happy, I just want to let you know that yesterday that hug and your comments made my day, I went home last night and felt great and re energized in my role.
Sharing the love, without doubt, makes us feel good as we notice the good in everything and everyone, the Brucie bonus is that in doing this we make other people feel fantastic too.
Help them see their brilliance and reinforce their great traits.
Life is busy without a doubt and one of the reasons we get so disconnected with life with ourselves, with others, with our dreams is we are just so busy. Our heads are too full of to do lists and deadlines, that we have no time for love and space for ourselves. My experience is that this is when negativity creeps into our head, I like to think of self-doubt and stress as the biggest alert for us to STOP… be present and remember what we really want is happiness and love.
Sharing the love with others, praising others, noticing their great points helps us bring ourselves out of ourselves and focus on others.
There’s also some science going on here! By noticing and praising others you are actually letting your unconscious mind know that what you see in them is a great behaviour and you’re more likely to replicate what you see.
Did you know you can only see things in others’ behaviours you can replicate in yourself?
If you notice someone being brilliant at something, its either because you are the same or have been the same, or you see it as something you can replicate and learn to do.
You know some people have some really bad luck in their lives and you say “I can’t imagine what you’re going through “and then at other times you might say ‘ I know what you’re going through’ because you have experienced something similar.
This is the same with good times and success in life, if you can see and recognise what someone is doing brilliantly you too can experience it, once you let love in and let go of fear.
I’ve broken the “I love” statements down so that initially it helps you when you’re starting out to focus on the right things. Before long, you won’t need a guide this will become second nature, you will be so full of love it will come naturally. I suggest you try….
5 x things …I love about people
5 x things… I love about surroundings and objects
5 x things I love about things people do
And then saving the best to last ……. 4 things you LOVE … about yourself.
This, without doubt, is the part people struggle most with when they first start to practice this incredible success habit.
Actually saying the words “I love” about themselves.
As a coach I invite people each evening to look themselves in the mirror and say I love you, to look themselves in the eye and really say it, I love you, your awesome, you have done a great job today, love, that you did some exercise, love that you completed that report, love that you showed love…..
You may already be cringing reading this and thinking what an odd thing to do.
Every step is about raising self-esteem, connecting with yourself and filling your head with positive, not negative thinking.
One successful lawyer I worked with shared with me that she would avoid looking at herself in the mirror at all costs, never mind looking directly at herself and saying I love you.
This activity for her was probably one of the hardest and far beyond her comfort zone, she felt scared to do it, but coming from a place of love and not fear she understood why this would benefit her, having very low self-esteem she kept herself under the radar and felt out of synch with the world. For us to show up in the world we have to love ourselves (even if we are British) back ourselves, give ourselves credit and reconnect with who we are and where were meant to be. At least with this technique were doing it in the bathroom with no one watching. Loving ourselves means we can show up in meetings, on dates, in discussions, be brave and bold and feel good about our contribution in our world.
We allow ourselves to shine, we’re not afraid to raise ourselves above the parapet and in doing so help others do the same.
The more you practice these techniques the more you notice fear thoughts and love thoughts.
When you can begin to see your fear thinking you can look that in the eye and say I see you and I come from a place of love.
I invite you to go on your own love rampage for everyone and anyone around you and always remember you are the most important one.
Remember “I love” statements
5 x I love about people
5 x I love about things
5x I love about things people do
And then saving the best to last 4 x I love about yourself.