Self-love: being the transitional character in your story

There is a blog called The Art of Manliness. It is mostly empowering, encouraging, and practical, although it does try and sell you a lot of things, and it’s also somewhat unnecessarily gendered. But still, wisdom may be found everywhere; they published a blog entry with the subtitle: “How To Become Your Family’s Transitional Character”, which sparked some thoughts …

How great would it be if you were the parent, or sibling, the aunt, uncle or cousin who became the ‘transitional character’ of your family? What if you were the one person in your group of friends who stood up and said, I’m going to do things differently – do you want to join me?


Most of us are lucky enough to have people around us who love us. Sometimes the love of another is enough to move us to action when there’s something – a situation, a behaviour, a relationship – that needs attention. But we need to act out of self-love, too.


Self-love is not “treating” ourselves with food, drink, cigarettes, shopping. Self-love is acting in accordance with what we know in our bones is right for us. It’s getting help when we need it, saying no when we want to, saying yes when yes is the right answer, even if we’re scared of change.


Self-love is a special skill that requires learning (or conversely, self-indifference requires un-learning). It has nothing to do with ego – I bet you can name a big-noting show-off who is one of the most insecure people you know.


Self-love is understanding our boundaries. It’s knowing what hurts us, and what will indeed make us stronger. It’s knowing when the facts are required to make the right decision, and it’s knowing when having faith is the best way forward.


And it’s knowing that what went before us – whether it be a family member, a friend, or even the person we were yesterday – doesn’t have to dictate how we move into our future.


If we have self-love, the people around us respond by respecting us. We might even become the transitional character in someone else’s life. Most importantly, though, if we have self-love and we trust ourselves, we can most certainly become the transitional character in our own story.

To read The Art Of Manliness article in full, go here.

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