Examine Your Life
Question  22 :  Do I like myself?
  Grant :
Do I 'Like Myself' is a great question, and the truth is sometimes I like myself, but not in an egotistic way. I do believe it is not up to me to like or love myself, but its up to others to approve and like me. If others like me, then the projection of the inner me is real. I do believe that if I act in a just and fair way in life, and that Hashem likes me for who I am , reflecting the goodness from within, then I will like myself.

   Rabbi Schwartz :
Mostly, we are critical of ourselves. We are critical of aspects of ourselves that are under our control, and critical of aspects beyond our control - parts of ourselves we would so like to change. This holds us back from liking ourselves as we could, as we should.

The solution lies then in learning to accept ourselves. We need to love ourselves, with our blemishes, with our failings, just the way we are. After all, we wouldn't do less for a child with weaknesses; let's do it for ourselves then as well.

We often make the mistake of measuring ourselves against others. Are we as beautiful, charismatic, intelligent as them? Do we own as much as they do? Have we achieved all that they have?

However, since we all begin our lives in different places, at different times, and since we all have different abilities, as well as different faults, there is no way to judge ourselves against others. Only once we move beyond our present lives, into upper spiritual realms, will we be able to appreciate all we have done or failed to do.

Ultimately, it is not achievements that count, but the trouble, pain and effort, as well as the love and yearning we have developed that make the difference. The only question for us all is did we strive to do our best; did we make the most of our lives.

Let us then be kind to ourselves, love ourselves, and do all we can to live our lives with all our hearts.

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