Best Self Magazine

Metta Meditation: Put a Little Self Love in Your Heart

Metta Meditation, Buddha photograph by Igor Ovsyannykov

Photograph by Igor Ovsyannykov

A simple, time-tested technique to summon feelings of love and gratitude for yourself and for everyone you encounter

Loving yourself, although praised by psychologists and Buddhists alike, is something many people struggle with; if it weren’t, I don’t think there would be so many books and articles about self-esteem.

Lack of self-love is unfortunate, because loving yourself is cost-free, zero calories. It feels good and is good for you. Many of us bristle slightly at the idea, as if it were somehow self-indulgent. We imagine a slippery slope into self-absorption or unattractive narcissism. What most people find undesirable is actually self-cherishing (i.e. selfishness). This is very different from loving yourself in the Buddhist sense. The kind of self-love described by Buddhists doesn’t really have a direct analogue in western religion or philosophy, and as

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