February 9, 2020
Do You Let Love In? How To Feel Deserving Of Love
The WISDOM podcast Season 1 Episode 16
with Dorothy Ratusny
Podcast Intro: 0-1:32 | Episode Overview: 1:35 | Are You Ready To Let Love In? 3:57 | What Makes It Difficult to Feel Loved?: 4:42 | Altruistic Giving of Love: 7:58 | A Question To Ask Yourself: 9:47 | What Is The True Meaning of Self-Love? 10:00 | Resources to Practice Self-Love: 10:16 | The Origins of Feeling Undeserving of Love: 11:03 | Your Personal Definition of Success - A 'Best Practice': 12:05 | How Can You Receive Love? 16:40 | Learn How To Open Your Heart At Will: 18:12 | The Three Best Practices for Opening Your Heart: 21:32 | The Freedom to Choose to Live From Your Heart: 25:32 | Reminders For Your Next Steps: 26:08 | It's a Wrap! 27:00 | Podcast Outro: 27:36
TRUTH SERUM: Knowing that you are deserving of love originates in how you feel about yourself. Being secure and confident in yourself; appreciating who you are - even as you may be seeking to improve aspects of yourself reminds you that the deepest experience of consistent and affirming love is what you feel unto yourself. It is what you are wholly responsible for. This is self-esteem, self-worth, self-confidence, and self-love.
A-HA MOMENTS: If you look outside of yourself to feel worthy and lovable, you make others responsible for your feelings. Others can never fill the void that comes with not believing in your worth. There is a specific process for learning self-love and building self-worth that I can help you with and it includes rewriting your core beliefs. Loving yourself unconditionally is what allows you to live nourished, uplifted and to thrive.
PRACTICAL WISDOM: “When you feel value and worth; when you feel successful by your own definition, it is easier to feel deserving of love; love that is directed towards your self.” - Dorothy Ratusny
💕 Perhaps one of the greatest sources of happiness and well being comes directly out of our ability to love our self and to be able to receive and internalize the positive words and actions of others; to allow the love and kindness from others to be felt deep within our being. After all, we thrive in knowing and feeling that we are loved.
So how appropriate is it as we are coming up to the one day of the year where our focus is on love? Predominantly romantic love but hopefully we are also able to think of love as a human construct that we can live as. In this episode, we examine why it is so important to be able to feel loved by others and unto our self and how can we be much better at this. I invite you to find a comfortable place where you can listen taking in the ideas, the concepts and feeling the importance of what it means to receive the love that others have for you and to have it also for yourself as the most definitive means of feelings and knowing your wholeness.
Do you let love in? Are you ready to?
It is possible to shower others with love and kindness; to think of others' needs and to give ceaselessly of yourself - and yet feel unloved, unappreciated, or undeserving of love.
"Helping others, being kind, thoughtful, and generous of spirit - is how you are love in action; and yet being love does not predicate that one is able to feel deserving or worthy of love - and to let it in (to receive it fully)."
How is it that 'giving love' can seem easier than receiving it?
What makes it so difficult to feel loved?
I think of all of the caregivers of the world, and the reasons for why they give. The first reason may be the most obvious; that they are simply following their instinct; they are acting with the intention to do for others something that they believe will help them, that will allow them to feel happy; and that spreads love and kindness purely for altruistic reasons. Giving comes easily as they follow their natural yearning - an innately driven desire and flows ceaselessly from one’s heart as it remains open in loving kindness. But are there are other reasons for why we give? When you give of yourself, is it unconditional, do your require anything in return?
Why can it be easier to give love than to receive it?
Since it is your fundamental nature to be love, naturally you want to give love to others and you can do this even if you don't like or love who you are. If you dislike yourself or feel undeserving of love, then giving love to others is one way that you intrinsically feel better about yourself (and you should) - since being loving-kindness is the highest ideal to live as. If you were reared to believe that love was conditional; that you had to earn it through good behaviour or tasks completed - then you may have grown up believing that you have to give and do for others first in order to receive love, acceptance, approval, or anything else that you needed. You may also have been taught that you must always give more than what you receive.
Giving of yourself, seeking to please others, and placing others' needs before your own - can be both a deliberate and an unconscious means of seeking love. This type of love is considered conditional.
If you do not feel secure in a relationship, if you have been taught by your earliest experiences that you must do for others in order to receive love, if you find it difficult to take in (to receive) words and actions depicting love that are given to you by another - then your kindness and care may at times be driven by your need and desire to feel loved - even if you still struggle to feel this.
Acts of kindness - of giving and doing - are one way that we are able to show love. Yet, are we doing for others in part because we have learned through experience that we may receive love in return for our loving actions?
Knowing that you are deserving of love originates in how you feel about yourself. Being secure and confident in yourself; appreciating who you are - even as you may be seeking to improve aspects of yourself reminds you that the deepest experience of consistent and affirming love is what you feel unto yourself. It is what you are wholly responsible for. This is self-esteem, self-worth, self-confidence, and self-love.
When you love yourself without conditions (including the parts of you that you are seeking to change and improve - by choice), then giving of yourself may be wholly altruistic rather than out of a need to seek praise, approval, and love. Self-love and acceptance is what you may continue to foster and develop throughout your lifetime. It may be said that you can become better at loving your self unconditionally - with daily positive self-talk, 'right' action that supports your authentic self, and the feeling of gratitude that comes with your willingness to acknowledge your goodness and all that you are.
"Your kindness and love in words and actions without a need (or desire) to receive anything in return is an example of unconditional love - towards another." - dorothy ratusny
Unconditional love can seem fleeting at times. When you are in a positive mind set; when you are happy and confident, it is easier to like and love your self and to be loving kindness towards others. Unconditional love is present in the moments when you are most characteristically your authentic self. This is an important reason why we all need to live honest and true to who we are; because accepting and loving our authentic self is easiest when we seek to live this - to be authentic first and in all moments.
Here is a question to ask yourself: Can I love and cherish myself as I AM without needing anyone to approve of or validate me?
What is the true meaning of self-love?
How can you practice self-love in ways that nourish and soothe you; and that feel fulfilling?
What is needed in order to feel self-love unconditionally and unequivocally?
Not only does it feel good to contribute to another’s happiness; but positive words and actions directed towards yourself, helps you to feel good, deserving, and of value. It also reaffirms the following questions:
Do you rely on the praise and love of others in order to feel loved?
Do you give ceaselessly to others but find it difficult to receive and internalize or 'own' the praise and kindness that is given to you?
The origins of feeling unworthy and undeserving of love have deep roots often buried in childhood and reinforced with many experiences that you believed to be 'true' and which caused you to discount your goodness and to feel unlovable. These core beliefs underlie the depths of your self worth; affecting how you think and feel - and what you believe about your self.
If you look outside of yourself to feel worthy and lovable, you make others responsible for your feelings. Others can never fill the void that comes with not believing in your worth. There is a specific process for learning self-love and building self-worth that I can help you with and it includes rewriting your core beliefs. Loving yourself unconditionally is what allows you to live nourished, uplifted and to thrive.
If you want to let love in, if you want to feel more love, including more self-love, I want you to consider this strategy: Define success on your terms. Create your personal DEFINITION OF SUCCESS.
Create a list of the virtues and attributes that you admire and approve of, and which you already possess. Use this definition as your new measure of success. Let your definition of success be about you - and not others. There needs to be no comparison - only the acknowledgement of your goodness to yourself.
For example: humility, kindness, taking action for what you believe in, self-honesty, self-worth, love of learning, patience and resilience. Download the pdf here and get started. Decide what will be your Definition of Personal Success!
This definition is powerful because it identifies what you value most and it allows you to begin to rewrite what scripts you may have in your mind that you have been taught or conditioned to believe and which are not true indicators of your success and worthiness.
Defining your personal measure of success may be a challenge if you are accustomed to being self critical and diminishing your worth; or if you have been taught that you need to do for others in order to be deserving of their love. The objective in deciding your definition of success is to help you change the way that you think and feel about yourself; and to own your worth and your successes - now, wholly. Focusing on your definition and measure of success reminds you of the ways in which you are already a success in your life - as you define it.
Once you have written this, place your personal definition of success where you can read it every day. Add to your definition each time you notice the ways in which you treat others with unconditional kindness and generosity; and as you acknowledge more of the positive virtues that you possess. Let this definition of success be the way in which you prove to yourself that you are worthy of self love; that you are valuable and important as you are. This is how you embrace your existing success - and how you intentionally raise your self esteem and worth. This is to help you take in the kind words, the love, the feelings of what you are. This is so that you no longer require the feedback and approval of others to know that you are good enough, deserving, and lovable.
Whenever you notice that you may be comparing your qualities to someone that you deem to be better than or more accomplished than you in some way, come back to your personal definition of success. Remember that this definition is driven by the values that are most important to you.
When you focus back onto your own definition of success, your need to compare yourself to anyone else diminishes significantly. What you define as most important to you, will be a description of what is successful to you. Let your own criteria determine what is successful.
This is a reminder of your goodness, your worth and that you are deserving of love. Let this criteria also help you set future goals based on what you truly desire - and not because of what others are doing, having, or achieving.
What you define as success is also what you identify as something worth working towards. If it is a true marker of success for you then it will be important enough for you to pursue and accomplish.
“When you feel value and worth; when you feel successful by your own definition, it is easier to feel deserving of love; love that is directed towards your self.” - Dorothy Ratusny
How you receive love...
When you receive love it is because you have opened your heart. You cannot receive another's kindness and thoughtful action unless your heart is open; that is - that you are willing to receive love. This is also how you are able to feel love directed inward. You must be willing to practice self-kindness, self-care and compassion and to believe in your worthiness of deserving love.
You can prime yourself for receiving love by means of your current mood state. If you are angry, sad, or any unpleasant or unwanted emotion; it will be impossible in that moment - to feel the love that another is attempting to give you (whether in kind words or deliberate action). Alternatively, if you are happy; if you feel content and peaceful - and you are offered a hug; for example, it will be easy for you to receive this and to feel the loving kindness of another directed towards you. When you are happy and peaceful; when you are in the present moment - your heart is open. With your heart open, it is possible for you to feel compassion and kindness towards yourself.
You can learn how to open your heart at will.
You can live with conscious awareness of the flow of life force energy moving through you and of feeling this energy most deeply in your heart centre; or you may be consumed by the thoughts of your (ego) mind. This is always a choice. When you open your heart it is because of your conscious choice to do so; it is because you are choosing to be present in this moment and to hold yourself open to kindness and love - to being this and to receiving this in perfect and yet simple ways. When you perceive the world (and especially those with whom you interact) as friendly and kind; as people doing their best even if their best is not the same as your own; life seems to be in harmony; things work out for you with relative ease; and you feel happiness readily. In these moments, when you attune to the energy of your heart - it feels expansive, freeing, and ever so light. You constrict the flow of this energy whenever you perceive yourself or others with harshness, negativity and bias judgment.
Just as you can learn to open your heart at will, know that you have also learned to close it. Most often we learn to close our heart energy (chakra) as a form of self protection; of needing to protect and withstand what hurt (anger, or unfair treatment, including abuse) was shown to us. We instinctively learn to close our heart whenever we sense that we may be hurt by another, taken advantage of, or if we interpret a situation as stressful or dangerous. Closing our heart energy becomes a learned behaviour - and one that we do instinctively - most often without realizing.
“Our nature is to love. When we have been hurt or betrayed by someone we still want to love them, we long to still feel loved by them. In these moments, our best practice is to direct our love within; to bathe our self with the feeling of love experienced fully.” - Dorothy Ratusny
Giving unto others opens our heart; any action of kindness will allow us to be open to receiving love because through giving we are also able to receive. Living of your heart open to love transmutes into the world and specifically as loving kindness directed towards others. The question is: “How good are we at doing this for our self?”
There are three best practices for achieving this self-love and for opening your heart and these you can implement immediately. The first: kind self-talk what you tell yourself you believe; every cell in your body is listening. Therefore, its important that the words that you speak each day inside your mind unto yourself are words of love and kindness and that they are uplifting.
The second best practice that will allow you to feel your heart open to self-love is gratitude and thanks for all that you are; all that you have both in your relationships with others and as you are your incredible self. Each one of us can be more encouraging and approving of our self as we are. When we teach our children that they are special and exquisite, we teach them how to love their self regardless of what mistakes they will make.
The third best practice is this: The way you live will always build your feelings of worth and your love directed inward. Therefore, aim to always live in the most kind and honourable way. In summary: Choose to live life seeing the good in others, being grateful for everything that you can possibly feel grateful for, as well as what is still on its way to you and trust in the power of desire to fuel your loving action felt most beautifully directed within.
If our earliest life teachings support this natural ability to love our self first and if this could be consistently reinforced, then we would truly be self-sustaining; able to rely on our self first and foremost for love, encouragement, and the knowledge that we are more than enough. When we are taught to love and cherish our self, then we will be more willing to follow what is best and right for who we are, rather than seek to be what others want of us, or as what we may think that others will appreciate or approve of because of our willingness to be what they desire and believe.
It is the most perfect and loving gift for us to take care of our self, to look after our needs first and to do what allows us to feel our innate happiness. If you practice self-love and self-care such as listening to and honouring what is aligned with your highest good, then you will remain on a path that supports and validates you and that helps you to live in a way that you can feel best about yourself.
“It is your inherent and authentic nature to be loving; to live with your heart open - to be kind to all others.” - dorothy ratusny
It certainly helps when others also practice loving kindness; however it is important to know that your natural and inherent state - is one of love. It is when you live out of your ego mind that you are susceptible to critical and self damaging thoughts which cause you to feel unworthy, anxious, angry, or sad. This is how you close the energy of your heart (and thus your ability to feel loved) quite deliberately and often without awareness of doing so.
The freedom to choose to live from your heart is your free will choice. Practice deliberately opening your heart; and seek to live far more of your life with your heart open. This is how you witness what it means to live as a being of love - deliberately. Living with your heart open is the mechanism for being love, for loving kindness, and self-love.
Gifts of Love: Helpful Reads and Experiential Practices to Nurture Self-Love and Self-Acceptance:
This is Love... A Guided Meditation
Discover the 3 self-love practices that will help you live as love in this video
The Path of My Heart
A Love Message to My Soul: A Prose Meditation
Sharing the wisdom and beauty of divine love with you...
Podcast Theme Music: 'Aura' from the Album, Illuvia by Eternell www.eternell.net/album/illuvia
Accompanying Music: Eternell, 'Floating' (20 min) and 'Embrace'
A generous 'thank you' to Audio Engineer, Pavel Kirpikau for your incredible help!