How to Actually Love Yourself. Like, Actually. For Real.

Via Jordan Epstein
on Jun 23, 2012
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It was hard for me to understand completely.

It’s hard at first for my coaching clients to understand, too:

How exactly do we love ourselves completely when things are difficult, uncomfortable, when we are wrong, when we f** up, when we are pitiful.

Let me run you through my own process, in a situation that just happened, to show you how I practice complete self love and non-attachment. I say practice, mind you, because I have to do it over and over again. Man, this situation especially. But here we are.

I’m a coaching professional now. Along with a few other things, acting…odd jobs, animal husbandry…but what this mainly means is that I need to find and maintain clients that trust me, reach me, work with me and pay me so that I can pay my bills.

So, I woke one morning earlier this week and meditated/ lay in bed for an hour or so. Laying in bed is my meditation these days. Diaphragmatic breathing for maybe one hour, or 15 minutes. Maybe a few minutes. Anyway.

I get a call around 6:30 from a coaching client. She didn’t realize how early it was for me, but I was up already, meditating. We talked for about an hour and a half. We have been working together for about a week. Together we’ve made tremendous, ridiculous progress, but she’s stuck at the gateway of self-love. I guess that may mean in some way I’m stuck in the gateway of how to teach it. Or when not to push. Anyway.

So she went off to sit with that, to really digest that that’s where she is in her life: learning self love. Not to judge herself, or be mad about it, but to be happy because she knows for a fact that that’s where she is. And of course you can’t get to where you’re going before you know exactly where you are. It’s great to hear her realize that she knows she’s getting there.

So, then I get out of bed and go post on Facebook about finally figuring out how to change my computer clock to be on Pacific time. I had been feeling like I was bragging a lot there lately, so I wanted to show vulnerability too.

Then I get another spontaneous coaching call, this lady is ready and able to love herself, already does it in several ways, but just hasn’t learned how to apply full time self-love yet. We chat a bit. She has to go, and we book an upcoming session.

Then, I get a text from another client who’s actually ready to pay me! And she wants to get to work, she’s going to come over. Awesome.

So she comes over, we work until about 12:39, really inspired shit. We are working through her really aligning her heart with her business plan and making sure she comes through honestly on her website…it was great. So then she leaves, and I promise that I’ll get her a few things set up, and I’ll do it in the next hour and a half—the time that I have before my next meeting.

And then I realize…my next meeting was actually at 12:30.

When I had re-set my computer clock earlier, I didn’t re-set my brain! I still thought it was 9:30, and I was late for this next meeting already. I emailed the potential client an apologetic message (I didn’t have his phone number) showered quickly and took off. I realized on the way out of the house, my car door had been smashed the night before by another driver. I didn’t have time to deal with it.

Now, this client has the potential to be a huge money maker. It’s someone I’d be helping raise money for their start-up. I can increase the value of their business before they make their raise, so they have more leverage in the negotiations, get a better deal, become wealthier.

So if I blow it, it may be me kissing goodbye to what I could have used to start my career. Gone. So now, what can I do?

Love myself enough to learn.

So much. God, so much. Not waste time beating myself up. Repair the relationship with him the best I can with my skills. This definitely doesn’t include being whiney or feeling bad. I gotta come from some position of humble—I f’d up, but I learned. Repair the relationship with myself by setting alarms when I have to leave for meetings, by getting my business in order to such a point that I’m not taking spontaneous calls and missing meetings.

What do I do now? Forgive myself time and again every time I think badly about the screw-up. Breathe into my heart. Love. Learn. Laugh. That’s how I practice self-love. F*#$, even when it hurts. Especially when it hurts.


Editor: Kate Bartolotta

Like “I’m not ‘Spiritual’ I just practice being a good person” on Facebook.


About Jordan Epstein

Jordan is a lifelong learner, Entrepreneur, MC, life coach and business consultant. He works with clients seeking to unleash and become their greatest purpose, weaving themes from yoga, psychology, performance art, science and startup entrepreneurship.

If you are currently working to unleash your potential and would like professional support, email Jordan at [email protected]. You can learn more by checking him out at atjordanepstein or find him on facebook, twitter and instagram.


26 Responses to “How to Actually Love Yourself. Like, Actually. For Real.”

  1. hehehehe… a day in the life baby a day in the life!!!

  2. jhepstein says:

    Haha, thanks! It's amazing what kind of adventures you get to if you decide you're not going to be afraid anymore.

  3. Deidre says:

    We all need to make money but I would rather deal with someone who thought of me as more than a paycheck!

  4. jhepstein says:

    Of course! The work for me now is to get my business (and myself) in-line to the point that I don't need to worry about money at all. For me now, it's working with faith and love and non-attachment, so I can still be all giving. I work to have nothing but love for everyone, it's one of my top goals.

    For the sake of humor, and setting up the story, you see the above. But also, it's not like we don't all think of work as work, sometimes, only to then remember: ah yes, selfless service. If you're all the way there, always, then more power to you. 🙂

    I appreciate your feedback!!

  5. […] teacher was meeting me where I was and even though I felt happy, enthusiastic and more hopeful about this experience than ever before it still felt as though I was nowhere—still caught in that no man’s land […]

  6. Michael says:

    Your mind is attractive. Thank you for this wonderful piece of advice!

  7. jhepstein says:

    Thanks Michael, very sweet of you.

    Let me know how it works out, and share the good news if it works for you! Gotta spread that lovin'.

  8. […] The reason it’s shifting is because I am completely loving myself as I am. […]

  9. […] The reason it’s shifting is because I am completely loving myself as I am. […]

  10. […] I know that by staying focused on giving, the giver is fulfilled. […]

  11. […] I know that by staying focused on giving, the giver is fulfilled. […]

  12. […] matter if our judgement of their judgement matters to us—basically, if we judge ourselves? When we love ourselves regardless and don’t judge ourselves, there’s no […]

  13. […] all boils down to one immeasurable fact—the relationship you have with yourself is the most important relationship you have. Photo: Jeff […]

  14. […] Sometimes I feel selfish and conceited for being able to think positively about myself, but then I realize that perhaps it takes practice and because I was born with more to hate, I had more practice at loving myself. […]

  15. […] I was playing my own executioner in a reality that doesn’t exist anymore. […]

  16. […] That the key to being in relationship with another was creating peace through compromising myself. I learned this in a visceral way, as the survival technique of a very young boy. I don’t believe that anymore; I’ve had a thorough re-wiring. I learned that if I abdicated too often, I was missing an essential ingredient in the relationship recipe—a good relationship with myself. […]

  17. […] when I started yoga, and slowly but surely found a way to tap into the things that I cared about—healing myself and others and working for the world that I truly believed […]

  18. […] love with others and ourselves. In order to find love with another person, you must first learn to love and respect yourself. Most importantly, you must be content with your life before sharing it with another […]

  19. […] succeed at being somebody that you are not (but think you need to be) is still a failure. But to love who you are and courageously be that fully is a life […]

  20. Joe Sparks says:

    Self love and success is highly over rated. How about being pleased with yourself and trying being human.