*Dear elephant reader: if you’re single & looking for mindful dating or conscious love, try out our lovely partner, MeetMindful.
Last year, the true voice within me rose: I’d had enough of dishonoring myself. I made a decision to abstain from dating and sex for one year.
This was the promise I made to myself and kept, and it was the most transformational gift I have ever given myself.
The love I had been seeking in others my whole life I gave to myself throughout this year.
Keeping this sacred promise sent a message to every part of my being, telling me I am powerful and that my life matters. It was a promise of light. The promise gave me the freedom, the permission, love and space to see my true self, my humanity and my divinity, and it allowed me to heal on so many levels.
When I made this promise, I entered into a relationship with myself and learned to be my own best friend; I found the strength in myself that I had always sought in men.
In growing into a relationship with myself I learned that the foundations of any relationship are love, trust, honor, truth, faith and free will. This relationship and time with myself gave me the chance to connect on a deeper level with my true voice, my true power and my self.
The connection I created with myself gave me the space to listen to my heart—to hear her wisdom.
Through this deepening connection came the power to forgive others and to let go of old beliefs, patterns, constructs, identities and wounds.
For the first time in my life I gave myself the chance to discover and be me—to live as I am, to listen and live from my heart and to love myself as I am.
This heart-opening year allowed me to see and feel the truly beautiful, passionate, blazing love that burns inside me. I learned that that is my true power and that is the place where my true voice emanates from. That is the voice I started using this year.
Every challenge I faced along this journey served to help my growth. In December I finally understood how dangerous the belief that, “I am powerless without a man” was to my entire life. I finally understood how precious my life is and for the first time I became fiercely protective of my life and of my sacred journey.
The most important thing this year taught me was how to love myself truly and from there everything else flowed. The love I gave myself this year taught me I am a powerful woman and not a victim.
This journey took hard work and perseverance but I was never alone, I had so much help from Great Spirit, from dear friends and loved ones. Everything that I learned, realized, overcame and experienced by keeping this promise to myself made it truly the best year of my life.
I hope my story can benefit others, as well. I learned that I had to heal and become whole myself before I could enter a healthy relationship with another. If you find yourself caught in a cycle of unfulfilling and destructive relationships, a similar course of action may be of benefit to you too.
Author: Lindsey McPhee
Editor: Travis May
Photo: Flickr/Nathan O’Nions