Self-Love Makes You a Better Lover
Does self-love help make you a better lover? Absolutely, says my radio guest, therapist and relationship coach, Lillian Benrubi. Here’s why…
My radio guest, Lillian Benrubi, wants every man and woman to live a life where they are seen, heard and loved. She teaches people to know their gifts, love themselves and own their power to create and manifest their dream life. Lillian has been providing psychotherapy and coaching for over 25 years. She has a compassionate, balanced approach that applies intuition, education, training, and experience to all her work. She believes in the resourcefulness and resilience of every person, and considers it a privilege to help people find the power within themselves to enjoy the benefits of wisdom and self mastery on the other side.
Highlights below for episode #278: How Loving Yourself Leads to Lasting Relationships with Lillian Benrubi.
Self-Love Makes You a Better Lover
Can you share a little about your own journey to self-love?
When I was 13, I decided to become a therapist. I had experiences of trauma in my childhood, and [as I got older], I began to realize it affected my relationships. [My journey to self-love has improved all of my relationships.]
What is your definition of self-love?
When we talk about love or loving our partner, we instantly speak slower and more calmly, our eyes open up wide, we might even smell that person. We know what it is to gently love someone.
When it comes to self-love, we may have that same response, but it’s still rather new. Caring for ourselves is a new practice. People often say it’s missing in their lives.
Self-love is about kindness, compassion, and nurturing ourselves.
At a young age, the adults in our lives gave us feedback about how we were doing. Our sense of self is through interpretation of the feedback we get in the world. It’s not based on facts or our own inner truth.
As adults, we now get a chance to reinterpret ourselves. It’s a journey into how we speak to ourselves, how we put ourselves out there, what our beliefs are. It un-weaves some of the threads from our past, looking through our inner truth and reframing our sense of self.
Example: As children, when we asked for something, we might have been demanding if/when we didn’t get what we wanted. Our actions could have been interpreted in a harsh way, so we shut down and don’t ask for what we want as an adult.
Limiting Belief: When I ask for something, there’s a huge threat. It becomes a body experience, not a conscious experience. We shut down and tighten up. We can’t seem to get the words out of our mouth.
Turnaround: Asking for what we want is a way of valuing us and showing the world that we are of value.
How can one work towards loving themselves again?
I give my clients a worksheet with questions to help them. Some of the questions to help with self love are about focusing on the love we have for others: “What loving words do we say about a person or pet that we care for?”
Look at how we talk about others that we care for in contrast to how we talk about ourselves.
How do you talk about yourself when you make a mistake?
Exercise: Think of someone you love and adore. What would you say to them if they were in distress? At a time when you’re in distress, access the ability to nurture and care for ourselves as we would talk to others.
When we go through some resistance, ask yourself, “What is that resistance about? What am I saying to myself?”
How long does it take for people to change?
It depends on the commitment level and the frequency of sessions.
I’ve had people begin to feel better within 2-3 months of weekly sessions. Some have left the practice within 6 months. If someone has had severe trauma, it takes longer.
If we’re sad, we want to be able to move out of that.
Unconsciously, we’re looking towards health. We have the wiring for that, even if we’ve never had a healthy loving relationship.
We know what feels good and what feels bad. We access it by contracting into our bodies, or by being relaxed. When we intuit into our bodies and notice when our bodies contract or relax, we use our body’s compass.
How does loving yourself translate to others loving you for who you are?
I was doing the emotional freedom technique at a tough time in my life when I was thinking of separating from my husband. My therapist had me say, “Even though I did __________, I still fully accept and love myself.” I couldn’t say that! I realized that if I don’t have that love for myself, I can’t fully have that for someone else.
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