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We need to make self-love a lifestyle, not just a practice! I truly believe that the root cause of the majority of the challenges and problems that we as humans face is a lack of self-love, self-worth and self-respect. This is the true epidemic that we face at this time in our evolution.

The funny thing is, though: we are all born with the natural ability to love, respect and value ourselves. It is not something we need to learn how to do as we grow up – for the most of us it is something we just need to remember. If you don’t believe me, go spend some time with a 2 year old. They will show you how easy it is to love and value ourselves.

For me, one of my greatest teachers is my niece Willow, who is almost 3 years old now. She has no issue at all with saying “I love you” to herself in the mirror or blowing herself kisses. She doesn’t stop herself from saying or doing anything because she is worried about how others may think or react. It is not in her consciousness to worry about judgment from others… yet.

If we are all born with the natural ability to love, respect and value ourselves, how do we lose it? From the first moment that we hear the words “no”, “you are wrong”, or “this is the way you have to do it”, we begin to question our own ability to think and feel for ourselves. We begin to give our power away to others in our lives, whether it is parents, siblings, friends, teachers – anyone who is in a role of authority or “knows better”.

We are taught from a young age to put the opinions of others above our own. As we grow older, the cycle continues until we get to be a teenager. At this point we begin to carve out our own identity and wonder who we truly are. We experiment with many forms of expressing ourselves, BUT, for the most part we look to other people or our accomplishments to validate what we say and do. We try to take our power back by looking to the very people that stripped it away from us in the first place.

For me, I was on this path until I was 19 years old. I had lost the majority of my self-esteem and self-worth at a young age – because I was labelled as “different” and “spirited” – so I never truly felt understood and accepted. In order to love ourselves fully, we need to feel understood and accepted.

It wasn’t until I had a complete breakdown that I realized that I was never going to get what I was truly looking for from anyone else but MYSELF! I realized that in order to feel accepted, loved and valued, that I needed to remember how to love, value and respect myself – and when I did that I would no longer rely on it coming from anyone or anything.

This is what we need to be teaching our kids from the moment they are born. Instead of looking to others in our lives to validate the feelings we have inside, we need to empower them to fill their own cups up from within. We need to stop stripping them of the very essence that they NEED the most to thrive in this world and instead show them the greatest gift of all is the ability to love ourselves, no matter what!

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Michael Eisen is an inspirational speaker, author and the founder of the Youth Wellness Network (YWN), an organization dedicated to inspiring and empowering youth across the globe to live happier and more positive lives. YWN specializes in creating and implementing wellness programs in schools and organizations, while providing additional programs and training online (

After positively transforming his own life at the age of 19, Michael is now on a lifelong crusade to share with other young people the principles, strategies, and practices that gave him the strength to start living a more joyful and healthier life. He contributes a fresh, young, authentic voice to the field of wellness, and is rapidly becoming a youth-wellness expert.

Michael's first book, Empowered YOUth: A Father and Son's Journey to Conscious Living, co-authored with his father Jeffrey Eisen and published by Hay House is now available for purchase online and everywhere books are sold.

To learn more about Michael and the Youth Wellness Network, join him on Facebook, follow him on Twitter, and visit

For more information, please visit

This Post Has 12 Comments

  1. Thank you Michael.The words that come out of the mouth of babes. Yes, I had to relearn that to, took me a long time, it’s called freedom .

  2. Fabulous piece. Many of the people I work with have been ‘damaged’ by other peoples labels and its always a joy to see the light go on when they realise ‘what the feel about themselves is far more important that what others feel “YOU are not broken YOU do not need fixing” is my mantra for everyone I have the privilege to work with in Coaching Thank you Michael and keep flying high

  3. Love this, Michael. And Willow’s actions remind me of the Louise Hay challenge–to look in the mirror every morning and say, “I love you.” Something we lost and now it’s time to learn again 🙂

  4. I can totally relate to that. I was different than my siblings all my life and Criticism accompanied me all my life. I have learnt that self love is not only good for us it’s necessary for survival. Once you get into a habit to listen to your inner voice rather than all the external noises, you will be able to achieve peace of mind even in the situations that are against your believes.

  5. I totally agree with this article. Self love is necessary and should be a priority.
    I need to teach my children to show themselves self love as I was never taught to show myself self love.
    For most of my life I spend most of my time organizing and preparing for others to succeed. Lately though, I spend a few minutes per day doing something I love. It is really an enjoyable relaxing time were I reconnect with myself. Whether it is learning something new or challenging myself to be better.

  6. I can reasonate with u on the analogy of the consiousness of a child being so clear that reactions from others doesnt affect him as much as it affects grown-ups.Sets me thinking that there is a need to clear the impressions created in the mind over so many years to have a mind like that of a child and develop our personality.As per the method of deflection, chanting the name of God helps to destroy the incorrect impressions in the subconscious mind.

  7. Michael, this is one of the best articles I have read on this subject – a timeless gift to humanity. Although you have directed it to young people growing up (which is essential), this is a “must read” for every parent, or parent to be, regardless of the ages within the relationship. For the older, communication relative to the subject has the opportunity of initiating the healing; for the younger, it’s a way to mitigate, or reduce the damage. I’m passionate about this, since it took me to be in the last third of life before I understood this and experienced a deep level shift toward who I ‘really’ am; and, without intending it, moving from hating my father, to seeing him as the amazing human being that he was, and actually feeling love for him.

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