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Girltalk February 2011: Do You Really Love Yourself?

Loving yourself can be the hardest task of all. But February is the month of self-love… and we are daring you to CHOOSE SELF LOVE! We all know that loving ourselves is something we should do… we all know that you have to love yourself first before you can love another… we would all love to take care of ourselves better but find it more of a dream than a reality, but this month at Girtalk… Taking it Deeper™ we take a stand for self-love, because it is not a luxury, it is a must-have. Download this month’s printable Girltalk Guide here.

Be Real.

Could you imagine telling a child, “Hey you, don’t love yourself, that’s selfish.” Of course not. And chances are that if asked, “Do you love yourself?” most people would say, “Yes, of course I do,” when in fact the majority of us don’t really have a clue what self-love actually means, or requires. This lack of understanding about self-love isn’t surprising when you consider that the current definition of self-love on is ‘conceit, vanity and narcissism’ (no kidding!) Or when you look at the pressures today’s woman faces, equal to men in many ways, knowing she can do anything, but exhausted by her attempts to do and be everything.

While it is true that women and girls have more equality and self esteem that ever before, something isn’t changing. We believe that something is self-love… while self esteem is something we want every woman and girl to have, knowing that you can do anything doesn’t stop women and girls from beating themselves up, putting themselves into abusive relationships or hating and destroying their bodies.

Today, in the 21st century, these are the facts:

  • 1 in 3 women will be in an abusive relationship before the age of 20. 80% will return.
  • 1 in 3 women will be sexually abused.
  • 4 of 5 girls will think about dieting before 4th grade.
  • Almost 1 out of 2 women will suffer through a divorce. 20% in the first 5 years of marriage.
  • 80% of women are so exhausted that they are headed for extreme adrenal gland fatigue.
  • Women surveyed today are no happier than women surveyed in 1970, even though they have more equality, self esteem and freedom.

Be Wise.

My definition of self-love is quite different than the version – and it boils down to this: Do you have unconditional love and respect for yourself? A big question for sure. Self-love can feel so intangible and vast to attain, but there is a path, there are milestones – I’ve experienced at least 5 of them myself over the past 10 years. I call these milestones the gates of self-love. And you can use them to see where you have load of self love and where you don’t.

In honor of this February 13th, the international day of self love, I’ve created The Self Love Test to give you insight on where you are ready to grow more self love by identifying the 5 gates of self-love, which ones you’ve passed and which ones you are still circling around. Brief descriptions of the gates are included in this packet, and you can get the full details as the vows and hows of self-love in the free self-love kit at

Be You.

My self-love dare to you is that on Feb 13th, or any day in February, you choose one gate of self-love and make that the gate you focus on this year…and to do it with the support and insight of the women in your Girltalk circle.  You each witness each other’s commitment and support each other as the year goes on. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to do it in your own Girltalk group:

THIS MONTH’s ADVENTURE: Take the Self Love Test and Choose How You Will Grow Your Self-Love in 2011

Step One: Do your own reflection.

Take this adventure on your own, before getting together w/ your girlfriends. Your Mission: Take the Self Love Test. For now, take this test and as you read about each gate, ask yourself, Have I already passed through to the other side, or Am I still climbing my way up to new levels of self-love here? Then ask yourself, “If I was to choose one area of self-love to grow in 2011, what would that be?” Dare to choose self-love.

The 5 Gates of Self-Love

Gate #1:  I know who I am and what I want from this life.

This is the first factor to loving yourself, because if you don’t know who you are, how can you love that person? Most of us go through life doing what we think we are supposed to do and be, influenced by the society around us. These experiences and people form our beliefs, attitudes, and perceptions, until the day we realize that how we really feel and think is different. While you will continue to learn about yourself forever, self-love requires that a. You make a choice to live self-aware, b. You know you want from your life and you are not settling for less than your heart and soul desire. c. You know who you are NOT, as well as who you are. d. You have healed your emotional gapers.

Gate #2: All of my relationships support me to be my best me and to live the life I want, or I don’t have them. This can be one of the hardest milestones, because it means setting boundaries and being honest about your relationships. It requires honoring yourself SO much that you only have relationships in your life – friendships, romantic partners, even relatives – that give respect, trust, unconditional love and truth. You love and honor yourself so deeply that all relationships in your life make your life better, help you reach your dreams and be a better you. This doesn’t mean that the relationships are perfect, void of difficulty, or that you are absolved of giving the same respect you desire. What it does require is that you choose me before we in every relationship – let go of ones that don’t serve you, change ones that have the potential to grow, and open up to let new ones come in.

Gate #3: My body is my temple. I recently took part in a survey in which 78% of women admitted that the thing they were hardest on themselves about was their body. Not a shocker, but sad.  Let’s face it, we are all guilty of body hate and what I call ‘body slavery’ – treating your body like a drive-me-til-I-drop workhorse, ignoring her needs completely. For me like I said, it was my cellulite. “Every time I sat down wearing shorts it screamed at me, ‘Here I am! Look at me!’ After being tortured by it for years, I did a self-love practice of loving my cellulite. Every day, I told it, “I love you.” I meditated daily, visualizing my cellulite pockets being filled up with love. Today, I can’t tell you if I have any less of it, but I do know that I very rarely notice it. And when I do, while I may not like my cellulite, I can love it. Its appearance now motivates me to walk more, instead of hating my body for having it. Self-love requires that when you notice something about your body you don’t like you choose love vs hate. Self-love also means shifting your relationship to your body from her being in servitude to you to you being grateful for this beautiful temple you get to inhabit while on this earth.

Gate #4: I am nice to myself. We are harder on ourselves than anyone else could ever be. In fact, if the outside world could hear the thoughts inside your head, they would call the authorities. Every woman has an Inner Mean Girl inside of her spewing out rants like,  “You are not enough. You should be able to get more done in a day. You don’t belong.” She compares your worst to everyone else’s best. Some call her the inner critic, but she is way more personal than that! As part of your self-love journey, your job is to love this Inner Mean Girl to death, so that instead of hurting you with her self-sabotaging thoughts and habits, she can help you see how beautiful, powerful and whole you are right now, just because you are you.

Gate #5:  I can and do take care of me without the guilt or burden. It’s like we have a DNA pattern that says take care of everyone else before you take care of you, and if we try to buck that pattern by actually taking care of ourselves, we can’t help but feel guilty or like we should be doing something more productive. This self-love milestone means being able to say, “Yes… I make self care a must, not a nice to do… I take care of me without feeling guilt… I meditate, relax, or take a walk and see it as productive time vs wasting time. I am aware of what I need, I am make sure I receive it.

Step TWO:  Throw a Girltalk… taking it deeper Event with Your Girlfriends

Use our super dooper fun conversation technology – Be Real. Be Wise. Be You. – guaranteed to get you closer to yourself and your girlfriends. To get the skinny on how to start a Girltalk group, and how to facilitate a fabu Girltalk gathering, see the Guide to Great Girltalking here.


Your goal here is to have each woman ‘check in’ on her personal experiment as a way to get the group connected, it’s a great primer for great girltalk!

1.    Each woman says her name and then answers this question: “One thing I love about about me is…”

2.   Go around the room until everyone has spoken. This will get you all connected enough to the conversation topic that you’ll be ready to Get Real!


The goal? Get the truth on the table. Say what needs to be said, but too often isn’t. Use these questions to get the conversation started, or to change gears as the girltalk grows. Use all of them, use some of them, whatever works to get the conversation real. Ask women to think about what they learned through their personal experiment as fodder for the conversation.

1.   What do you think self-love really is?

2.   What has been the hardest gate for you? Why?

3.   Do you think that most women are hard on themselves? What is your Inner Mean Girl hardest on you about? What’s the impact?

4.   What does taking care of yourself really mean?

5.   Why do women find it so hard to take care of themselves? And how do we do it to ourselves, causing our own stress and overwhelm?

6.   What’s the biggest lie we tell ourselves about taking care of ourselves?

7.   What does that lie give us? What does It cost us? And what is the truth?


Now it’s time to bring the wisdom forward so that you can start bringing forward thoughts and ideas that are going to help and inspire you to create the life you really want. I suggest using each of the 5 gates, and picking a few to discuss for each gate:

1.    What do you think is required to really love yourself in this gate? Tell us what it looks like. Tell us what it doesn’t.

2.   What stops you the most from having this love?

3.    What truth and wisdom do we not get until we are older that we could tell our daughters now so they could avoid some of the pain?

4.   What is the truth about how you self sabotage and what has worked to transform it into self love?


Now it’s time to take action, to do something out of your comfort zone that has the potential to make real shift in your life. And like a dare, it has to push your edges.

1.   Choose one gate to grow your self–love through or over. Make the commitment to the group and on paper.

2.    If you make this commitment, what are the promises you need to make to yourself. What must you say YES! to and what must you say NO! to.

3.    Express your commitment in your own unique way. Be witnessed in your gate and promises by delivering the commitment in front of others – dance, sing, or just talk. Just be brave and step forward.

Love is a practice. Start by practicing on you. Choose Self-Love this February 13th. Visit to get your free Self-Love Kit

Have a great time Girltalking and inspiring each other to love yourselves more!

With big heart,

Christine Arylo

Chief Girltalker

To learn more about Christine Arylo, creator of Girltalk… taking it deeper, inspirational catalyst and self love expert, visit her at, a virtual cornucopia of self-love inspiration created just for you. JOIN the international self-love movement, MADLY IN LOVE WITH ME & download her free Madly in Love with ME Guide, full of daring and practical tips on how to fall more in love with you everyday, at

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