I’m gonna re-write me a love song

In the process of learning to love and appreciate myself I’ve come up with endless ways to make it happen. Some ways stick, others don’t. A favourite of mine is rewriting love songs. Finding the cheesiest love songs and then starting to swap you with me or I.

I do hear you think: that is SO SILLY!

True! But…do you ever really listen to love songs? As in ‘really’, word for word? If you do, you may have noticed that most love songs seem to be about how someone’s happiness and self-confidence depends on the other. It’s always focussed on the other. Never on the person itself. Never on you, your importance, the fact that you are the person you’ll live with your whole life.

So yes, it’s absolutely silly. It will make you laugh out loud at first. But give it a try, ‘cause after a while you’ll notice that the words really reflect with you. And the whole love song gets a different meaning. In fact LOVE gets a different meaning. It starts to become clear that it starts with you!
And here we get to one of my main realisations during my self-love journey. My happiness doesn’t depend on someone else. Not the other is responsible for my happiness, but I am.

I totally understand if you don’t get it right now, if you think I’m nuts – I am – or whatever it is you think. But fact is that this – rewriting love songs – is something that has helped me on my self-love journey. And to help you on your way, here are some examples:
To start, we’ll take one of the neediest songs from the ’90-ies. I need you by T3. If you don’t recall, bear with.

This is the refrain of the above mentioned song:
I need you
And I couldn’t live a day without you
I need you
More than anyone I ever know
I need you
And I wanna build my world around you
I need you
I need you

Yikes.

Now the fun part – rewriting it!

I need ME
And I couldn’t live a day without ME
I need ME
More than anyone I ever know
I need ME
And I wanna build my world around ME
I need ME
I need ME

And there you have it. The essence of life: you need yourself to get through life, you need to take care of yourself and build your world around you (not in a egocentric way, mind) before you can build a life with someone else. That’s the core of what I’m learning, little by little, bit by bit.

Let’s try another song. This Love, This Heart by Phil Collins. This is what it looks like after the formula of self-love:

 
This love, this heart, these arms to hold
So tight to me, I won’t let go
Can this be real, or just some dream that feels so true
I wish myself love, I wish myself more
I’m all that I live for
I’ll never hurt me, believe me
My heart beats just for me
It only beats for me

 
I’ll keep the fire alight for me
Can’t think of nothing else, what can I do
This lonely heart of mine, it only beats for me
It only beats for me
I bring me peace, I make myself smile
I give myself strength and all the while
I ask for nothing, only love
And my heart beats just for me
It only beats for me

I won’t give up, I’ll wait for me
‘Til I come back, it’s all I can do
I’ll be right here, I’m going nowhere without me….!

 
Okay, that one may sound a bit sad. On the other hand, don’t you wish you would tell yourself “I wish myself love” or “I’ll keep the fire alight for me”? Amazing, wishing yourself love! That’s what I’m trying to wish myself and give myself: love. And by singing love songs to myself, literally, it sticks. There you have the whole point of singing them to yourself: it is so funny, that it can’t do much else but stick. And slowly it will start to make sense. These days I can tell myself in the mirror that I love myself.And that’s the best feeling!

 
Save the best for last, Charles Aznavour’s Me, eehm, She:

I may be the reason I survive
The why and wherefore I’m alive
The one I’ll care for through the rough and ready years
Me I’ll take my laughter and my tears
And make them all my souvenirs
For where I go I’ve got to be
The meaning of my life is me

I mean, come on! This is the core of it all. You are the reason you are alive. The one person to take care of is you, in the first place. Why neglect yourself and expect others to do all the caring and loving for you? Why do you think that, if you loathe yourself, you are able to love others? Why expect others to love and adore you and take care of you if all signals you send out are signals of self-hate?

I hope I’ve given you some food for thought…or at least something to smile about ;-)

With love,
Tess

Self-love

Love and music. Essentials.

A Heart A Day #16

Today I did some scribbling and doodling and I spoke about self-comapssion with friends. It’s interesting to see that so many people struggle with self-compassion! Why, people? Why is this so? However, I guess it’s good to know I’m not the only one coming a long way.

When I say I’m working hard to get more compassionate towards myself, I don’t mean I sit and meditate all day. Simple things help me focus on self-compassion and self-love during the day. For example focussing on what I would love to add to this world. I would love to create “tools” that help people develope a positive picture of themselves, that help developing self-compassion; and no kidding, I’m working on a book on this specific matter! Other “tools” I’m creating are gestures that you can give to other people to show you care – my cards for example. Doing this makes my heart skip and puts a smile on my face the moment I think about it. I can be my authentic self and that feels good! I love that feeling and slowly my self-love grows. Baby steps, but day by day it gets stronger.

Whilst scribling and doodling today I created a heart with one of my favourite quotes. Be the change you want to see in the world. From Gandhi. Speaking of meditation, writing a quote about 20 times is meditative! I added a picture of planet earth, for the extra drama ;-)

What change do you want to see in the world? And what steps are you taking towards it?

With love,
Tess

PS: Have you created or spotted a heart this week? Share it with me! Use #aheartaday and social media may overflow with hearts…

16

[I love love and I love hearts! But oh, this world needs more visible love. So let’s change that, step by step. Away with pessimism. Away with hate. Let’s fill this world with love. And hearts! To show compassion towards each other, towards the planet, towards ourselves. It proves to be difficult for so many of us. But instead of judging it’s more meaningful to show love, to respond with love, to act out of love. Say it with hearts.
So I’m sharing A Heart A Day. Every day I will draw, stitch, paint or otherwise create a heart and post it on this blog. Will you help me make love and hearts spread like a contagious but healthy disease?]