Love-Loading vs. Carb Loading – An anecdote
When my beloved grandfather, affectionately known as Pop-Pop, passed away, our family was distraught with grief. He was full of love and had a unique gift for making anyone in his presence feel authentically special and loved by him (including servers at restaurants and random strangers – yes really!).
Many many people spoke at Pop-Pop’s funeral. But it was my brother’s eulogy that I have never forgotten. Back then, my brother was a marathoner and he was very familiar with carb-loading in preparation for his races. At the funeral, my brother talked about how he finally understood what Pop-Pop had been doing all those years when he gave us so much love — more love than anyone could ever need at one time. My brother explained, “Pop-Pop was love-loading us!” — so we could go the distance well after he was gone, filling us up with love for the long haul.
I lovingly pass this personal story on to you, because love-loading is a zero-calorie process that really works! You don’t need Pop-Pop or anyone else to love-load for you. Give yourself the gift of self-love this Valentine’s Day.
Here are some of my favorite ways to love-load your life…
- Write down qualities about you that you like/love. Sit quietly for 2 minutes and think of a time when you felt proud of yourself. It’s ok if it was a long time ago. What was that proud time like? How did you feel about yourself? What qualities about yourself did you feel good about? Don’t be shy…write them down.
- Write down 20 things that you are grateful for about you. Consider going deeper than just what you can “accomplish” and consider elements of your mind, your body and the essence of your heart.
- Write a love letter to yourself. Address it with “Dear (your name).” Write all the things that you like about you and love about you. Express compassion for the things you are still working on within yourself and the ‘you’ who you are becoming. Sign off with “Love, Me”. Seal it. Wait for at least 2 months (or longer) to read it.
- Write a love letter to your inner child. Write a letter to you as a 5-year old, providing guidance, compassion and love to yourself back then – reminding yourself as you write that the 5-year old you still lives inside you today.
- Write little love notes to yourself on post-it notes. Make these brief and simple, but from the heart. Need some inspiration? Check these out. Post these notes in your home, in your car, at your desk and anywhere else where you’ll see them regularly. When you come across them in your day, read them back to yourself replacing the “you” with “I”. Maybe even say them out loud.
- Create a box or an envelope of love. Get a nice box (alternatively use a shoebox or an envelope and decorate it with things that you love). Next, use any or all of my suggestions above to fill your box or envelope. Then, on those “rainy difficult days”…you know the ones I’m talking about…go to your box or envelope and read each message aloud to yourself.
It’s important and valuable to notice your experience of yourself while love-loading…are you allowing it in? Bring your awareness of yourself to the experience — mind, body and heart.