In order to love others, you must first love yourself. In order to understand others, you must first understand yourself. And It's more important to understand, than it is to be understood. You can't give what you do not have to give, therefore you can not love, if you do not first love yourself.
When some people hear that they have to first love themselves, they go on a rampage of selfishness. You do not love yourself by means of becoming self centered and wandering around like you are the only one that matters in life. You do not take a "me first" attitude and look to have your way with everything and everyone. That's selfishness and has no consideration for yourself or for others. Me, Myself, and I are the single biggest relationship breakers on the planet. However, in order for love to flow through you, you do need to look within yourself, as your development comes from the inside out.
To love yourself means to take good care of yourself, to acquire understanding and wisdom for yourself, to make sure your needs, (not wants), are met, and to have a relationship with the source of love, which is God. How can you recharge your love batteries if you do not plug in to the charger? Look at this simple truth from 1 John 4:7; Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. (Did you key in on the part where it says; "for love comes from God" ?)
We all need affirmation, we need to know that we matter. Others often fail to recognize our inherent worth. Yet, we are the ones who most often devalue ourselves. We develop self-concepts that fall far short of who we really are. Others may have damaged our sense of esteem, but we compound our emotional injuries by accepting and institutionalizing other people’s assessments of us. Remember that if you were born into this world, you have immeasurable, indelible worth.
Regardless of past failures and disappointments, you are worthy of every opportunity that is related to your life purpose and destiny. You don’t need everybody’s approval. Some may bristle at your good fortune; they may even try to take you down a peg. Others will want to convince you that the opportunity is over your head. Learn to recognize envy, as well as misguided and ill-intentioned advice when it shows up.
The more encouraged you are, the more you feel like you belong. The more encouraged you are, the more resilient you become. The more encouraged you are, the more tolerance you have for the struggles you face you in your journey and your sphere of influence. The more encouraged you are, the more you take things in stride. Learn how to turn your liabilities into assets. Recognize your strengths and expand your horizons.
When you give yourself permission to be imperfect, you give yourself permission to make mistakes. When you give yourself permission to make mistakes you learn from them and you grow. When you grow you discover you are more capable than you thought. All God has is imperfect people who make mistakes, yet with God, life becomes unlimited, nothing becomes impossible, and no dream is unreachable!
Don’t ever underestimate what can yet happen in your life based on what has not yet happened. As long as you have breath there will be moments of opportunity presented to you. Always remember that from the perspective of the One who created you, your past does not determine your present; your future does!
The most significant source of affirmation comes directly from our Heavenly Father. Dwell upon these scriptures and let them sink within your soul…
Zephaniah 3:17; The LORD your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing."
Psalm 139:5-6; You go before me and follow me. You place your hand of blessing on my head. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too great for me to understand!
Psalm 139:13-14; You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother's womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous–how well I know it.
Psalm 139:16-18; You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed. How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! I can't even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand! And when I wake up, you are still with me!
Lastly understand that Jesus died for you; Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. (John 15:13)