Everyone should, at least once, have the great excitement of receiving a love letter. Reading what qualities of ours another person admires and delights in helps us to recognize what was true all along – that we are worthy of love!
I was reminded of the power of love letters when reading this great blog post – 12 love letters written by, among others, Beethoven and Michael Jordan. The language ranges from super simple to wonderfully poetic, but every single letter conveys the intense appreciation the writer has for his or her subject.
On February 8th, 1998 I got my first love letter from Kathleen, the woman who would become my wife. She gave me a card for my 10-year sobriety anniversary (which I wrote about here in February), and in that card, she had slipped in a little love note as well. It makes my heart drop to my feet 15 years later to think of that day. On the card, a little boy was holding a big bouquet, and on the inside it read, “I like you, I really LIKE you.” I still keep that card in my top desk drawer. Her love inspires me every day not only to love her back but to love myself as well.
And yet there’s no need to wait by the mail/inbox to get a love letter – I suggest, whether you have a significant other or not that you write one to yourself! Doing so serves a double purpose: not only will you get the benefit of reading how wonderful you are, but you will, in the course of writing, recognize the amazing combination of qualities and accomplishments that makes you uniquely, wonderfully you.
There are three ways I suggest going about this:
Option 1: Copy the template below on a piece of paper or on a card, filling in the blanks as you see fit. Put it in the mail (addressed to yourself), or hide it for yourself to find somewhere down the road – maybe with your beach towel to read in July or in an holiday decoration to find later this year.
Option 2: Instead of using the template, simply freehand a love letter. Mail or tuck away as instructed above.
Option 3: Check out futureme.org, a website that allows you to write a private email to yourself. Write your love letter, either freehand or using the template. Pick the date of delivery, either randomly or for a time you know you might be having a little trouble (around a painful milestone, perhaps, or a stressful time of year, such as exam time).
Writing this letter will allow you to be appreciative of yourself, something we all skimp on while trying to love, take care of, and nurture our partners, children, and colleagues. And reading it will make you feel great! Make this a regular practice – send a letter to yourself every three months, or hide little notes of encouragement that you will stumble upon later. Being your own cheerleader and supporter -knowing that you are in your corner will help you tackle life’s greatest challenges.
I’d like to take a moment to give thanks for me. I deserve a __________________ (item on your wish list) and the __________________(reason you’re wonderful) Award, because I truly rock. Remember earlier this year, when I did __________________ (something you’re proud of) and __________________ (awesome accomplishment) ? Not to mention the fact that I frequently help __________________(someone close to you) __________________ (task you help with) without __________________(destructive action). Someone with my __________________(good personal trait) and __________________(another good trait) should be feted with __________________ (way to celebrate). So on this day, __________________ (month, day, year) , I vow to take at least a few hours for me. I’ll __________________(activity you enjoy) __________________(way to pamper yourself) and give __________________(person you love) a call, because we have the most__________________(positive adjective) conversations. I may even wear my _______________(favorite outfit) and refer to myself as ______________ (fun title) all afternoon. Starting now, I’ll remember to acknowledge that I deserve time for _________________(passion or hobby) and space for ________________ (ritual that leaves you clam and centered). In short, I’m going to enjoy the heck out of myself, on Self-Love Day and from this moment on!
# # #
Weight Release & Body Image Coach Laura Fenamore is on a mission to guide women around the world to love what they see in the mirror, one pinky at a time, so they can unlock the secrets to a healthy weight and start loving their lives as soon as possible. Learn more about her programs, invite her to speak or contribute to your program or conference, or place pre-orders for her book today at OnePinky.com.