When we begin to love ourselves, we begin to do the work of world peace. I believe that:

…the more I fill myself up with what I love to do…

…the more I look inward to understand myself…

…the more I do this…

…then the more I love myself and the healthier I become.

AND:

…the more I love myself and the healthier I become, the better I am in my relationships and the more love I have to give.

It’s like I’ve become a love multiplier. Love, turned inward, multiplies so there’s more to give! Love is infinite…it creates itself. The more I love, the more I love.

So you can see where this is going, right?

Let’s look at what’s going on in the world. We’ve got wars, terrorism, propaganda. We’ve got this side threatening that side. We’ve got this guy wanting to burn that guy’s holy book. We’ve got so-called “religious” types who spew what can only be described as hate. So we fight for change because we don’t know any other way. And the basic ingrained lesson is, war works.

Now let’s look at what was going on with me. I had an unhealthy relationship with food and with myself, not to mention a few members of my family. I overate. I was not as healthy as I could be. I would sometimes hurt myself by exercising too much. I felt broken. And I thought the only way to change was to struggle and fight for it…that there was no way that it would come easily and naturally. I thought I had to take on other people’s goals. I thought I had to live by other people’s rules. And because I didn’t have any other way of seeing it, the basic ingrained lesson was, war works. And as I write this I think of all the war-like analogies in the diet/weight loss culture: boot camp, challenge, victory, battle, conquer, fight, loser, winner…

My body, my weight…my very self…were a microcosm of the ingrained lesson that the only way to change was to declare war through shame, guilt, hate, and deprivation.

Stepping away from the diet-binge war did not happen all at once. It did not happen in a big way, It happened via a series of thousands of tiny moments.

A key moment in the process was when I decided to stop weighing myself because it was just too damn painful to get on that scale (and I say this only for me…if you feel that weighing yourself is a kind and loving act, then go for it!).

Another moment was when I learned how to practice acceptance right this minute no matter what.

And then there was the moment that I realized that I can just be with exuberance and grief, love and rage, jealousy and confidence, insecurity and comfort, pettiness and generosity…I can be with all of it without having to numb myself.

Part of the process is learning and acknowledging that I will always be stepping away from the war. It’s a continuous letting go. And it’s an active reminder that world peace starts with me.

Mantra: My body transforms positively through self-love.

*If this post sounds familiar, it’s because I wrote it a while back and then resurrected (and edited) it for The Self Love Series Report, a compendium of similar stories compiled by Evelyn Lim (Abundance Tapestry) and Lance Ekum (The Jungle Of Life). The Self Love Series Report will be available as a free eBook soon!