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On Love: 'Self-love' is easy to desire, heavy to practice

"My brain subconsciously disapproves of me if I'm above a certain weight"


A designer by day and entertainer by night, Kru Harale is a comedian, actor and poet. For this week’s ‘On Love’, I spoke with them about the power of loving yourself. While the phrase ‘self-love’ is way too common on social media, the power of realising that loving yourself can’t happen overnight is what Kru believes pushes her through life’s thick and thin.

 

But, why must one love themselves after all?


Hurt people hurt people; happy people heal people. I wish we were taught this in school. 


My niece - she’s two. She’s super cute, super friendly, and a total smarty pants. I saw her catch her reflection in the mirror once and exclaim, “wow!” - she was mesmerised by her own reflection. It reminded me that we’re born loving ourselves. Babies love their toes and bums; they’re curious about every fart and burp, proud of every picture they draw on walls. 


We’re all born loving ourselves unconditionally but grow up seeing room for improvement. We put impossible standards on ourselves and look for a partner, parent, or friend to validate us. We need to approve ourselves. I will never think my niece could look less cute. 


I say affirmations to myself, even on days I don’t believe them. I look in the mirror, look into my eyes, and say I love you. I need to be at peace with how I am today without wishing for change - how I look and talk. Yes, there is always room for improvement, but I need to be genuinely accepted and approved by myself. 


The affirmations help, but it’s a continuing journey. 


Self-love is an ongoing process and will remain important even if I meet my soulmate tomorrow. No one completes you; you complete yourself. I think the movie Jerry Maguire really screwed that for everyone. Two complete individuals come together to form a team.

 

Jerry Maguire: A film that ruined everybody

 

We don’t “complete” anyone; we only complete ourselves. 


I used to be a chubby kid, and I’ve realised my brain subconsciously disapproves of me if I'm above a certain weight. Does this mean I’m lying to myself about self-love? I don’t think so. The critical first step is to honestly examine why you find it hard to say you love yourself. 


Is it really self-love if I mostly love myself, but under a certain weight, I really love myself? And once I reach my ideal weight, would I find another flaw? My self-love depends on a number on a weight scale - that was a big discovery, and I hope I can get past that one day. 


As I said, it’s an ongoing journey. I just published a poetry book; one of my poems is that I’m a work in progress. And I’m okay with that.


Liked reading 'On Love'? I will be speaking with a South Asian person about what it means to them regularly for this column. If you have a story you'd like to share with me, DM me! You'll find my handle in the bio below.

 

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About the author

Sashi Perera is a Sri Lankan Australian comedian, writer and recovering lawyer. She was featured on the UK's 2021 Funny Women Awards 'Ones to Watch’ List and was part of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival in 2021 and 2022. She's constantly inspired by love in all its forms and writes a regular column for South Asian Today, ‘On Love’. Instagram | @sashbomb


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