Helene Lerner’s new book, In Her Power: Reclaiming Your Authentic Self, shows women how to remove the barriers to their authentic power by facing fears without falling back on self-sabotaging behavior, appreciating strengths as well as weaknesses, acting honestly rather than practicing false giving patterns, having confidence, and expressing sexual power and pleasure.
How to Be Your Own Valentine
Holidays can be difficult for many of us. We may have expectations of the way things should be, and when what actually happens falls short to those expectations, depression can take over. This is especially true on Valentine’s Day when couples proclaim their love for one another. If you are not part of a couple, the loneliness that results can be intense. How can you nurture yourself during this difficult time? Here are some ways to appreciate the most important person in your life — yourself!
Be honest without judgment. A powerful way to self-nurture is to be nonjudgmental about your feelings, thoughts, and observations.
It’s okay to feel lonely. In fact if you don’t, you probably wouldn’t be normal. But what’s not okay is to judge yourself for it. For example, thoughts like “What’s wrong with me? I don’t have an intimate partner.” If that thought arises, be aware of it, and you can turn it around. Tell yourself, “Yes, I don’t have the type of partner I want yet. But I am growing and appreciating myself more. And with the desire to manifest that special someone, I will. Maybe not on my timetable.”
Honor yourself. So you may not have a partner in your life right now. Take an inventory of everything you would have wanted that partner to be and what your relationship will be like. For example, you want someone to appreciate you, share experiences with you, love you and you in turn would do the same for them.
Well right now, there is someone special in your life — you. So bring yourself into the present moment and think of an activity you would love to do that you haven’t done in a long time. Don’t wait for someone else to do it with you. See your favorite art exhibit, go to an outdoor market and buy yourself something special, see a movie you haven’t had time to see. Give yourself a treat you may be waiting for someone else to give you.
Embrace all of you. When you discount a part of yourself, or emphasize your weaknesses, it’s a form of criticism. You’re not acting out of compassion and self-love. Take the time to acknowledge your strengths and accept the things you still need to work on. You will.
Television host, Emmy Award-winning executive producer, and workplace consultant, Helene Lerner has covered a wide array of women’s issues, including relationships, self-esteem, breaking barriers, and work-life imbalances. She has consulted with Fortune 500 companies about how to attract, retain, and advance women managers, as well as given keynotes and moderated panels on topics such as Smart Risk-Taking, Reinventing Yourself, and Embracing Change. As an accomplished columnist and founder of one of the premier websites for women, WomenWorking.com, Lerner remains on the cutting edge of women’s issues.