Deep positivity versus shallow positive think. Self-respect versus self-restraint. Resilience versus reward. These are the penetrating self-love sub-topics that make (Oprah-approved) author and inspirational speaker, Danielle LaPorte, shine so brightly in our books. We find her advice about how and why to love ourselves accessibly real – and especially pertinent on a day dedicated to the emotion.

We’re looking forward to diving into Danielle’s latest projectWhite Hot Truth, when the book officially drops mid-May; until then, we’re taking a page from her perspective with these down-to-earth insights on self-love…

Q: Talk to us about “practicing deep positivity, vs. shallow ‘positive-think.'”

In terms of envisioning and creating our future, we want to keep our thinking as “positive” as possible. But this is intense work. Doubts surface, mental garbage from our past churns up. Returning to positivity is like a constant workout for your soul. And, is staying consistently positive even possible? Yes, but it might not be what you think.

Let’s break down “positive-think,” because this is where most manifestation techniques mess with our heads. Positive-think might suggest that it can make the bad things vanish. What’s really problematic with positive-think is that we’re being trained to use it solely to try to get what we want. It’s shallow positivity.

If we’re “thinking positive thoughts” just to manifest what we want, then what happens when we don’t get what we want? We usually crash into negative thinking. Hard. Your positive thinking has to be rooted in the heart, not just in the attainment of external stuff. On the other hand, deep positivity means that you have faith that you will be okay, no matter what happens. Not if it all works out for you in the end. Not if you get what you want when you think you should get it. But no matter what happens.

Deep positivity believes that life will still support you even if/when you don’t manifest what you want. You’re worthy, you’re resilient and you’ll always be able to tap into your joy and strength….even if your vision board dreams goes to shit.

Q: Let’s talk about those of us who are driven to achieve, often skeptical about self-help, and who don’t think self-love is a necessary part of their journey to excellence. (Not to reduce people to stereotypes, but we know a lot of people who match this profile.) How does a person in this state of mind tap in to the value of self-love?

A: Everyone is entitled to their version of “excellence”. But if someone doesn’t think that true self-love is part of full life, then not only is that their loss, but it’s a weight for everyone around them. Because without self-compassion and self-respect, narcissism and greedy disregard start to run the show. Nobody wins. Changing that perspective, as in, getting an “I don’t need to love myself to be successful” type of mindset to change usually requires a big downfall or loss. The person needs to feel major ego-pain to see that loving kindness is the greatest power of all.

Loving yourself makes you more powerful in the world. Fact.

Q: For those of us who struggle with self-esteem issues, what are some of the most powerful tools and practices you recommend? Where does a girl start?

A:Start where you are, and love what you can. Love what you can on any given day and let that guide you out of the fog and fear toward brighter love. Some days, all you’ll be able to muster is loving the color of your eyes or how organized you keep your desk. Brilliant. Pick something, anything, to keep your mind off of self-loathing.

Eventually you’ll feel this electricity of love for yourself. And it won’t just be a concept. You will fully adore your talents, your substance, and your very kind heart. And you’ll stand up for what you want. Loving yourself makes you more powerful in the world. Fact.

Q: What are your favorite recommendations for tools that powerfully impact one’s journey to self-compassion? 

Stop saying yes when you really want to say no. That’s it. Love yourself enough to respect your time and talent. And for the love… find a way to mediate that works for you. Pray in the bath tub, dance every week, sit for 10 minutes every morning and breathe in light – whatever calls to you. Stillness is where the truth hangouts.

Q: What one question would you have readers ask themselves to get the gears turning on this topic and their approach to self-love? 

A: What would your life look like if you love yourself like it’s your job? Like, for real. A full-time soul career. Like…loving yourself like your life depends on it. Because it does.

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