As human beings, we all have a desire to love and be loved. This is basic to being human and is our deepest emotional need. In order to love others, and to fully accept the love of others, we must first love ourselves. This isn’t the same as being arrogant or self-righteous, which is our ego talking, but instead is about understanding who we really are beneath all the labels and beliefs, feeling our connection to everything around us, and experiencing ourselves as Love itself.
Loving yourself is considered a key part of being happy and contented, but getting there is puzzling. Who is the self doing the loving, and how is it different from the self you are supposed to love? Aren’t they the same person? Yes, of course. But the problem lies in the divided self. The divided self is what causes inner conflict.
Have you ever had one of those apologies that left you feeling worse than before? Where the person says the words, “I’m sorry” but follows it up with something that negates it. Those apologies that have a but. The ones that spend a millisecond in responsibility and validation of your experience and immediately make a quick 180-degree turn to let you know that you are actually at fault.
Imagine driving down a road and suddenly coming to a detour sign. Without warning, you are taken off course, heading from a smooth path onto a bumpy road. As you maneuver and adjust to the new circumstance, you strengthen your capacity to expand and adapt. This is resilience.
For the Ask Dr. Sheila column, Dr. Sheila Patel, Chopra’s Chief Medical Officer, answers questions from our community. If you have a general question for Sheila around health and wellness, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, and your question may be the one she answers next.
Gabriella Wright appears on our video call and instantly exudes warmth and tenderness. At her home in California, wearing a white button-down, her hair loose and long, Wright settles in with a green juice and greets me just the same as the first time we spoke—with kindness, joy, and a sparkle in her eyes.
Your alarm is blaring at you for the 50th time. You notice that it’s an hour past when you said you would arise. Your heartbeat begins to creep into panic mode. Your palms are sweaty. “I’m going to be late. I am most definitely fired. How am I going to feed my family without this job” you think to yourself. You run out the door, hair wet, with some version of coffee in your hand. You notice you still have time to make it to work before your first meeting. You exhale deeply and your heart rate decreases just as your favorite song comes on. You make it on time.