By Shawn McAndrew
One night, while awake at 2 a.m., the same scenario kept repeating itself in my head: A stressful situation, and I was trying to figure out a solution. If I do this, then this will happen. If I say this, then that can happen. The same story, repeated over and over. Occasionally I would break the monotony by saying a little prayer, asking for a solution or guidance from spirit.
I Am Love, Loving, Lovable
Then I realized I could change the story. If I was going to play out a scenario over and over, I might as well say something that was from spirit and not my intellect or emotional self. I am love, loving, and lovable became my story. Though, after awhile, I realized I was just saying words. I did not feel them. Sure, it’s a mantra I can use to remind me that I am a spiritual being, but how did that make me feel?
Feeling something is quite different than knowing something. I’m not a brain scientist, but I suspect that when we feel something, it is more likely to stick than if we just say something.
What Do I Love and Care About?
I asked myself, “What do I love and care about?” I love hearing babies laugh. Hugging my friends and family makes me feel love. I love the smell of fresh baked cookies. Seeing beauty in nature evokes love in me. Enjoying a delicious meal fills me with joy, and love for the cook and the food.
The sensations that can conjure love are as varied as all of life. When we tap into the sense of love – whether it’s touching, seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, or just knowing – we become love itself. As I ran through this mantra again with the perspective of sensing the love instead of just thinking the words, my energy began to shift. I thought of the things I love. I thought about the ways I am loving to others, to my world.
I Am Lovable
And then I stumbled over “I am lovable.” How is it that I have so much love for others and the things in life, and yet I don’t have that profound love for myself? To shift this energy again, I started thinking about the people in my life who love me, who have supported me throughout my life no matter the ups and downs. And why they love me, which can be hard to take in because of, you know, those pesky childhood patterns.
Recently I have been going through old letters and cards. There is so much love and affirmation contained in the words written to me over the years. Reading people’s gratitude and appreciation for me seeped into my bones, into my soul. I am reminded of a saying from a 12-step program that goes something like, “Let us love you until you learn to love yourself.”
Learning to Love
We are all learning to love ourselves. Each day we have opportunities to be love, loving, and lovable. Through the power of the Process, we can be just as lovable as we are loving. Meantime, let us love you until you learn to love yourself.