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TMHS 269: How Your Level of Self-Love Impacts Your Health, Happiness & Success

Love is one of the most powerful forces in the universe. Not just in a metaphysical way, but in a very tangible, practical way that guides our choices everyday.

Love compels us to care for and support others. Love compels us to create and bring our thoughts into physical form. Love compels us to put ourselves in harm’s way so that others can live. Love compels us to work hard, to practice, and to respect the process. Love compels us to get back up when we fall, and rise to the challenge in the face of adversity. Love heals.

Love is also not discriminatory. Although, that’s the way our society has allowed it to be framed. In our world today, it’s ok to love someone or something else. But, loving yourself… nah. That would be self-centered.

What if I told you that loving yourself was the greatest love of all? Hold up, have you actually listened to Whitney Houston’s song “Greatest Love Of All”? Well, let me give you a little refresher:

I believe that children are our future.

Teach them well and let them lead the way.

Show them all the beauty they possess inside.

Give them a sense of pride to make it easier.

Let the children’s laughter remind us how we used to be.

Now, let’s break this down line-by-line.

I believe that children are our future: This is a statement emphasizing how important our children are. That they carry the torch. They the are, in fact, the future of everything. We all start here. And we all deserve a chance.

Teach them well and let them lead the way: This encompasses how we are all programmed at an early age… and need to be taught “well”. With that, we are capable of leading us into a brighter future.

Show them all the beauty they possess inside: Establishing self-love is often directed by those entrusted to care for us. This line highlights that. It’s one of the greatest gifts to know that you have immense beauty inside of you. (And no one can take that from you… as highlighted in another line from the song, “No matter what they take from me, they can’t take away my dignity.”) If we can be shown the beauty we possess inside, we will find strength, happiness, and real love.

Give them a sense of pride to make it easier: This line makes clear that we need our sense of self-love and self-worth to be reaffirmed. Obstacles will be presented along the way that will challenge your sense of self-worth. If we are instilled with pride and a sense that it’s “ok” to love yourself, it will make life easier (and we can eliminate unnecessary suffering).

Let the children’s laughter remind us how we used to be: Kids possess an innate quality of self-love that adults tend to forgo as they get older. That quality is being honesty about what they want, and a desire to be happy. Kids are all about experiencing joy. That’s what this line of the song spotlights. If we can pay attention, and tune into that joy, we can be reminded of the beauty inside of us.

The interesting thing is that I didn’t listen to this song until the recording of this episode was complete. Each and every one of these points were covered in this episode in some form or fashion, and then it hit me like a ton of bricks. The greatest love of all was outlined in this song many decades ago. Yet, we seem to have overlooked what the song actually means.

We’re at an epidemic place in our society’s collective lack of self-love. And its results are pouring into every area of our lives. I decided to do something about it. I decided to share the uncomfortable, seemingly unbeautiful stuff within me… in hopes that it can help someone else to see just how much they matter, and just how much they deserve to be loved. And especially deserving of “The Greatest Love Of All”. Click play, listen deeply, and enjoy.

In this episode you’ll discover:

  • Why chocolate is commonly associated with love.
  • Why there’s a recent shift to positive psychology.
  • What self-love actually is.
  • How self-love can influence eating habits.
  • The negative feelings that often come with food choices.
  • How different things in your life are dramatically affected by your level of self-Love.
  • The 5 major places that our neglect of self-love comes from.
  • What kids know about self-love that adults tend to forget.
  • Why unhealthy comparison has become an epidemic.
  • How we are culturally programmed to NOT love ourselves.
  • How knowing ourselves can unconsciously diminish our self-love.
  • Why we all need to feel like we matter.
  • The difference between your innate value and explicit value.
  • Why deciding what you really want is part of self-love.
  • How lying about not knowing something can sabotage our success.
  • How we can start to allow ourselves to want what we really want.
  • The 5 steps to develop more self-love and self-value.


Thank you so much for checking out this episode of The Model Health Show. If you haven’t done so already, please take a minute and leave a quick rating and review of the show on Apple Podcast by clicking on the link below. It will help us to keep delivering life-changing information for you every week!


Shawn Stevenson: Welcome to The Model Health Show. This is fitness and nutrition expert, Shawn Stevenson, and I'm so grateful for you tuning in with me today. When this is being released it's officially Valentine's Day. Alright? Valentine's Day. Here in our culture this is about romantic lovey-dovey, all that good stuff. And you know, even back in school, this was probably one of my like top two favorite holidays while in school. You know, elementary, you'd bring those little Valentine's card to give to all the different people in class. But there was like a little special one you'd give to the person that you really like, you know? And of course as we grow older, this becomes a more romantic thing; you know special dinners, and chocolates, and all that good stuff. And by the way, back in the day- this was probably, I don't know maybe seven years ago, eight years ago now I did a Ted X talk in Las Vegas, it was called Ted X Sin City appropriately. And I did a talk about how chocolate can save the world, and I talked about some of the benefits of chocolate, specifically cacao. You know, the natural- the place that chocolate is actually developed or maybe underdeveloped or mutated from, and all the different benefits. And some of those really surprising things, like why is it so associated with love and with the heart? Well funny enough, cacao, you know this raw chocolate is arguably one of the most rich foods that contain magnesium, alright? This is concentrated- more than any other body part, magnesium is concentrated in the human heart, alright? What? Because you know it has a lot to do with- and by the way, magnesium has over 325 biochemical processes that we're aware of, so that means there's 325 things plus that your body cannot do or cannot do efficiently if you're deficient in magnesium. I tell people this all the time, it's so important. Like we're walking around- it's the number one mineral deficiency. At least 80% of the population is chronically deficient in magnesium. So we're walking around with bodies and minds that are not fully functioning because this one deficiency, right? So this is why this has this resonance why the human heart. That's just one of the reasons. You know, it has these cardiovascular benefits- clinically proven cardiovascular benefits. It also has these interesting compounds that are like neurotransmitter and neurotransmitter precursors like serotonin. Also phenylethylamines, alright? So abbreviated as PEA, and this is associated with this kind of in love feeling, this kind of euphoric feeling. When we're in love, we have more of this in our system, alright? So I like to give the association, this kind of wake up moment of love, and how we really experience it. We think that love is outside of ourselves. Like, 'I love you. You make me feel this way.' But in reality, nobody's sprinkling like magical love dust on you, and if they had that stuff, that's some serious- like that's some serious illegal stuff. Alright? But you're really producing this within yourself, you know? It's your response to your environment, your response to the person, and we produce these things within our own bodies. Chocolate gives us some of those neurotransmitters, right? It gives us some of those hormonal compounds. This is why it's so fascinating in our culture, you know? It's like because I had the question like, 'How did this happen?' 'I love you, here's chocolate.' Right? It actually has a strange root. So I thought that was really interesting, and by the way, you know I'll put it in the show notes. It was way back in the day- way back in the day, but it was a pretty cool talk, and you know we could just talk more about this. There's MAO inhibitors, so many cool things, but definitely it has a root in this association. And so what I wanted to do today was to take us outside of that paradigm of this external love, and look at something else, and something that is equally, if not more important as you'll understand today, in your success in life, in your health, which is self-love. Alright? So this topic is incredibly important, and it's very rich in content today, and so we're going to dive in and truly unpack this concept, how this can show up in some kind of really interesting clinical ways, and most importantly how we can actually develop this so that we can be on top of our game, so that we're taking the best care of ourselves with our physical health, with our relationships. It influences so much, and I promise you it's going to be an absolute game changer for you. Now but on that romantic note though, before we get to that, I've got to talk about my sheets, alright? I sleep on Ettitude sheets, alright? Everything that I do has a purpose, and Ettitude is antimicrobial, self-deodorizing, it inhibits bacterial growth to help you to create a healthy sleeping environment. It's free from harmful chemicals, irritants, allergens, it's hypoallergenic. You'd be shocked to find out how much straight up nastiness is in conventional stuff that we buy- you know, sheets. So I highly encourage, even if you buy just the random like sharp- you know some of these sheets are sharp. Once you have Ettitude, you'll know just how sharp these sheets are. But at least like don't just go and put them on your bed. Wash them first, alright? Wash them first, but you don't have to worry about that stuff with Ettitude. Now here's another big reason why I love it. It's breathable, moisture wicking so it wicks away sweat and leaves your skin feeling cool and natural. So it's thermoregulating. This is a big word, and this is something that I talked about in my book, 'Sleep Smarter.' It's thermoregulating. These bamboo Lyocell sheets can be used all year round because they help to keep you cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Alright? They're thermoregulating. Now this is- again this is made of the finest organic bamboo Lyocell. This is 300 thread count which is as fine as 1,000 thread count Egyptian cotton. But this is good for you and also good for the environment because it's only consuming one third of the amount of water. There's so much water and resources used for cotton, that the industry is really like a big kind of suck or hurt on our environment. A lot of people aren't aware of that. But also here's the other key; the bamboo Lyocell, no harmful chemicals are involved. The farming of cotton utilizes a lot of chemicals. It's just part of the culture. And so again, be kind to your skin, kind to the planet. You've got to get yourselves some of these Ettitude sheets. You will truly understand. Like it takes sleep to another level. Like have you slept on a cloud? Have you? Alright? This is like the real deal, it's so good. I just got some brand new ones put on my bed yesterday, and it's these coffee sheets is the color, and also they're actually ground fibers built into the threading, so it has like this additional anti-fungal property to it. It's really amazing. But I want you to get yourself some. Head over to, alright? So it's and you get 10% off your purchase. Now here's another cool thing. So people that might have been rocking with me with the Ettitude back in the day, it was coming from the company's based in Australia, and they do a wonderful job, such a great team over there. But getting the shipping down and getting that right, they've got a brand new US shipping center now, alright? There's no reason you can't get your hands on these sheets. And it's luxury for less, by the way. Because it can sound like, 'Oh this is fancy. It's going to cost a pretty penny.' Well they have in-house design, and they work directly with the manufacturer, and so they're selling directly from there without any crazy markups, high retail, that kind of thing. So you get it from them and it saves a lot of money. So again, new US shipping center, and you'll get 10% off. And oh by the way, I just got the new PJs. They just came out with the new PJs, alright? So the PJs, the same material as like with the sheets, so you're walking around- it's kind of like wearing a love song, alright? Have you ever like put on love song pants? It's just- I can't explain it to you, but try it out, and you'll understand what I'm saying. Alright again, and also keep in mind you get a trial as well with Ettitude sheets. So you can actually sleep on it, dream on it, think about it, and there's a time period you can actually return it if you don't love them, but that's nuts. You will absolutely love them. Alright so again check them out, for 10% off, and now let's get to our iTunes review of the week. ITunes Review: Another five star review titled 'Beautiful Soul,' by AngelinaP95. 'Shawn, thank you. You are doing amazing work providing such crucial information about health on every level; mental, emotional, physical to everyone. You have inspired me to change my life around and focus on improving my health. I'm eternally grateful for you and all the knowledge you bestow upon us. I love listening to every episode more than once and taking my own notes so I can soak up as much information as possible. Words cannot express my gratitude. Much love, Angelina.' Shawn Stevenson: Oh man, Angelina, that was so incredible, and I receive that. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Really filling up my cup today, and by the way, this episode is going to be one that you're going to want to listen to over again. And that's really immersion right there, everybody. You know? And that's something that I did coming into this field and really kind of figuring these things out, and finding a way to be of service, and to find a way to cultivate and hone my own gifts, is I would immerse myself. I would listen to lectures over, and over, and over again, becoming part of it. Like it literally became a part of my life, and I became a part of it, you know? It became a part of literally my brain tissue, you know? Just it's so fascinating to know that the things that you expose yourself to actually become a part of your physical structure, and we get to pick, we get to choose what our environment is, you know? We're not at the mercy anymore of like it's just one thing. We're- today we're literally world citizens, and we have access to infinite information, and whatever you're passionate about or you're interested in, you can make that a part of your reality. So truly powerful. Guys, thank you for leaving me those reviews over in iTunes. I truly, truly appreciate it. If you've yet to do so, pop over there, leave me a review, come on let's go, and it just means the world to me, so thank you. And now on that note, let's get to our topic of the day. Today's topic is how to love yourself more, how to love you more, and the importance of self-love, and how to cultivate this because everything that we do here on The Model Health Show, it has scientific basis behind it, and there's a drive. Because this can sound a little bit like airy fairy, it can be a little woo-woo. But sometimes some of that matters, and some of it is real, and some of it is backed by science. There's a lot of things that we still don't understand yet, and this is a new blossoming field of psychology right now that some of the major universities are really investing in is positive psychology. Because for years- I mean decades, and this is even when I was in school, psychology and health was really based on the focus of problems, like just looking at disease, and looking at disorders, right? Not really looking at what do we do to create a healthy, sovereign, enlightened, thriving human being? Like what are those factors? Just eat, drink, have some community. No, it's not that simple. It's not just something to brush off. It's like- it requires more education, it requires more thought, it requires more intention, and a shift off of the problems as well. And so I think it's important, of course we still do need to understand the problems that come up, but positive psychology is where things are really moving towards, and today we're looking at a big facet of that, which is self-love. Now so what is self-love? Well bottom line, love comes in many forms, you know? There's devotion, admiration, compassion, support; these are all kinds of facets of love, and self-love is simply having those feelings or that identity within yourself that those things are necessary, that those things are a part of your psyche, that you have those things for yourself. So self-compassion, self-admiration, self-devotion, self-support. Alright now here's a really interesting thing on self-love, a little bit of research. So there was a 2007 study by researchers at Wake Forest University that suggested that even a minor self-compassion / self-love intervention could influence eating habits. Alright? Now for the study, there were 84 female college students and they were asked to take part in what they thought was a food tasting experiment. Alright? Now at the beginning of the study, the women were all asked to eat donuts. Alright? They were asked to eat some delicious donuts, and one group was given a lesson in self-compassion with the food. Right? And so the instructor said, 'I hope you won't be hard on yourself for eating the donut.' And they went on to say, 'Everyone in the study eats this stuff, so I don't think that there's any reason at all for you to feel bad about it.' Alright? 'I hope that you're not hard on yourself, there's no reason for you to feel bad about this.' Like giving them permission to not feel bad. Now here's what happened, this is fascinating, later when the women were asked to taste test candy from a large bowl- alright large bowls of candy, the researchers found that women instructed to have self-compassion actually ate less after hearing the instructor's reassurance. Alright? Those not given the reassurance of having more self-compassion actually ate more, alright? So let's look into this, like what does this actually mean? So having this activity that we would deem to be bad behavior is like eating a donut, right? Especially if you're vying- and they mentioned many of the women in the study were vying to try to get healthier, to lose weight, and you eat a donut, it's like going to be built in oftentimes with a lot of shame, remorse, guilt, and these associated terrible, terrible feelings that really shouldn't become packaged into those things, into that behavior. It's just not conducive to any type of benefit for us at all really. You know and again, but in some instances they can be helpful if we learn from them, right? If we actually see this particular thing is a guiding light to something else, but that's very difficult to do. How about we just move away from that and have more self-compassion? So giving them permission to say, 'You know what's not a big deal? I had this-' and you can move on, instead of what the researchers indicated, and this was their theory, the hypothesis says that the women who felt bad about eating the donuts ended up engaging in more emotional eating. So that's the problem. That's like the double edged sword, you know? We have this guilt and the reoccurring emotions that come along with that leads to more emotional eating. Like, 'I already messed up, fine. I need comfort.' And so not having that selfcompassion can be a driver. You know again, like we've got all these fancy diets and exercise programs out there. It doesn't matter if we don't have the basic psychology down. It doesn't matter if you're trying to do this particular diet if you're beating yourself into submission, because I promise you suffering does not equal health. Right? Suffering- like those two things are on completely different ends of the spectrum, but oftentimes what we believe we need to do is suffer our way into health. Now to be honest in anything in life, you're going to have points where there's going to be some challenges, alright? There's going to be problems. There might be hardships involved, but you don't have to suffer, alright? You don't have to suffer. Oftentimes our suffering is created internally by ourselves, and the language that we choose to use, and how we communicate with ourselves, and the way that we identify with ourselves. Because how often, if you really think about it, do you speak to your friends and family in a kind manner? And some of the things you say to yourself you would never say to your kids, you would never say to your best friend, you would never say to your parents or somebody that you care about. Alright, but again we're going to unpack why this is, what's going on behind the scenes, but I want you to understand that the main person that we need to begin to have some compassion for, and self-love, and self-support is ourselves because that language that we're using is our programming. Alright? It's literally hardwiring the way that we operate and it's affecting everything. So what does it affect? Well number one, it affects your relationships with other people, alright? Your self-love and self-compassion affects how you function in your relationships, particularly how you conduct yourself in the relationships, and the standards that you uphold. Because if you don't have a sense of self-love, your standards for what you will allow in your life is going to be pretty low. Alright? People are just going to be able to hop right over the little teeny, little tiny little gate. Alright? They're just going to be able to jump right over that. There's not a lot of selflove and self-respect so the standards are going inherently going to be lower. So I hope that makes sense. So cultivating self-love helps to ensure that your red velvet rope of your life, and the influences that you're allowing in, it exists. Alright? And everybody just can't jump in and influence you, alright? It gives you a sense of sovereignty, and of being empowered to know that you have the right to have good people in your life who support you. So I hope that makes sense. Now another thing is- what does self-love affect? It affects how you take care of yourself, and this one might be a little bit more easy to understand because there's a certain amount of self-love that results in an attitude of, 'There are just certain things that I do. Because I love myself, there are certain things that I engage in because I care about myself. I care about my mind, I care about my body. And also there are certain things that I don't do because I love myself.' You know, we subject ourselves to things sometimes that we wouldn't subject other people to. Right? The kind of anguish, and the things that we might put into our bodies, the foods that we eat. If you think about it, like you wouldn't give this to an infant in some cases. 'Oh they're too young for a Hot Pocket. Let's wait a couple years.' Right? But you just ate the Hot Pocket! Alright? So these are things to think about. Again, your self-love affects how you take care of yourself. Also your self-love affects your work. It affects your work for sure, and how you show up, and how you perform. Alright? This should be pretty obvious. Also your self-love or level of self-love affects the choices that you make. Now big choices in like what you do for a living, your self-love, the love that you have for yourself, the self-support, self-compassion determines the work that you do and what you decide to do. Like a big choice, what you are capable, because you have this love for yourself and admiration for yourself of doing as far as your work. And then even small things like what you choose for a snack, right? It affects your decisions every day, all day. And finally one other thing that I'll share here, and there's many other things, is that your level of self-love affects how you deal with the challenges in your life. Alright? This is a whole different operating system when you have cultivated a healthy sense of self-love versus not having that in how you show up and deal with challenges. Alright? And again, we're going to dive in and break this down even more today. Now already you can sense there's like a basis of like, 'This is something important. Like I should have this.' It sounds obvious, but yet and still many of the people listening right now have a big issue with this, and I know for certain that I did as well. And where did this whole thing come from? Where does our neglect of self-love come from? You know, I want to really break down and look into some of those pieces because oftentimes awareness- just the awareness of it starts to heal it. The awareness of it starts to bring it to the forefront of your consciousness so that you can actually address it. And I want to go back because usually a lot of this stuff happens during childhood. But kids, kids are generally very self-aware and care about themselves a lot. Like there's a lot of self-compassion and self-love that kids naturally have, right? Because for kids, they're happiness matters a lot to them, right? They just want to be happy, right? They just want to do- and you'll notice this. When kids are able to do the things that they enjoy doing, like they are blissed out, and they cannot stand doing things that they don't want to do. You know? But you know, of course it's like there's some balance with that for sure so it's not just about like, 'Oh yeah, everybody gets to do what they want to do all the time.' Alright? Parents are there as guards and guardians to help to provide a way, right? So I'm not saying that this is like some kind of like kids just go and do whatever they want, that's how the solution to this is. That's not what I mean. It's just that admiring and looking into that and just seeing this innocent curious blissful nature that we tend to have, and the self-love, and the things that we enjoy, and how kids are like in it. They are so present in that moment, and embracing life, you know? And they care. Like they really care about being happy. So where does this change? Well I believe that our neglect of self-love happens- you know the seeds are planted during childhood, and one of the big ones is due to comparison, alright? Our self-love begins to diminish due to comparison, comparing ourselves to other people. And this is a semi-natural human trait but it's magnified today more than ever because of the advent of social media, the Internet. You can see how everybody's living large every minute, right? And you start comparing yourself, and looking at how much you suck, how much you don't have this, you don't have that, you don't have this feature, you don't have that, and immediately your self-value, your self-compassion, your sense of self-esteem, all those things can start to diminish. And there is an epidemic happening right now with- specifically with our children battling every day their ability to care about themselves, or to value themselves, because they see other people on the Internet, even at their schools and this kind of thing, and everybody is posting their highlight reel, that their life isn't measuring up, that they're not smart enough, they're not pretty enough, whatever the case might be, and we need to do something about that. But it starts with us. We can't tell our kids to love themselves and respect themselves more if we're not doing it. Alright? So our use of technology and social is just going to grow, it's not going to go anywhere anytime soon, and so the best thing to do is for us to address this head on, and help to cultivate a healthy sense of self going into it, and making sure that our kids are aware that this is something- there's a proclivity for this to kind of unfold and to happen. Alright so that's number one, is comparison. I think that that starts to pull us away from our self-love. And I love the quote, and I first heard this from Wayne Dyer that says, 'When you compare yourself, you silence God.' Alright? When you compare yourself, you silence God. We're ignoring our innate value, you know? Your unique beautiful value that you come endowed with when you get here as a human being, and we're going to talk more about this, but remember that quote, 'When you compare yourself, you silence God.' Point yourself back to your value, your uniqueness. There's never been anybody like you before in the history of the world, and there will never be anybody like you after. How powerful is that? Alright so that's the first thing, and by the way, so we've got four- there are four main things here that start to pull us away and neglect self-love. So number one is comparison. Alright so let's move on to number two. Number two, this one is complicated, but it's actually really simple. Alright? It's complicated but simple. I know that sounds paradoxical, hear me out. Alright so number two here is that the first thing when you see- when you actually look up, when you go to Dr. Google and you look up the definition of self-love, the first thing that you see is that self-love has often been seen as a moral flaw. Literally that's the first thing you see when you look up, is that this is akin to a moral flaw, to vanity, and selfishness. Alright and vanity is a sin, right? This is what we're told. This is something that we're indoctrinated with, is that having self-love is selfish. How messed up is that? Really? I mean think about that. And you've got to think about where those teachings come from. Right? You've got to think about the people empowered telling you that you loving yourself, and you wanting to do better for you while I'm over here living in a castle, right? I'm over here doing my thing, life is good, I want to keep you down. Alright? Don't love yourself. Don't have a sense of selfishness just to take care of you, not to be selfish as a human spirit and taking from other people, but having that audacity just to love yourself and care about yourself is wrong. That idea is embedded in our culture. Again, this is the first thing you see when you look this up. Moral flaw, vanity, selfishness. What? Listen, if you don't look at this and start to look at the programming that you're probably carrying around about self-love, you're just going to be a victim to it. Alright? This is a problem. This is a problem in our culture that this is seen as something that is wrong, and the way that the words can be twisted up, alright? So that's the second thing. Third here on our kind of culture developed neglect of self-love, the third thing is that you have to be and do things that you don't want to do in order to be happy. This concept in our culture that you have to be and do things that you don't want to do in order to be happy is one of the reasons that we diminish our self-love. Why is that? Why am I saying that? Is it because neglecting our sense of self is inherently one of the problems that start to kind of break apart your self-love and your psyche. Neglecting our sense of self, that this is what makes me happy, but then like society or parents, that kind of thing is telling you, 'No you can't do that. You have to do this.' That suppresses your self-love because you know. You know what feels good, you know what feels right for you, you know the thing that lights you up, that brings you joy. We lost track of it somewhere, alright? I promise you it's there, but when you neglect that, you suppress your self-love, and it starts to become a sense of even distaste sometimes for ourselves. Alright? So again, the idea that you have to do and be things that you don't want in order to be happy, in order to be successful, that's a big issue. And then finally we've got number four. Now you might have heard the statement that you can't truly love someone else if you don't love yourself. Alright? You can't truly love someone else if you don't love yourself first. Alright? But that's not true! It's not true at all. Alright? It's actually much easier to love somebody else, and here's number four, is part of the problem is that we know ourselves. Alright? We know ourselves, we know our weaknesses, that's part of the problem. We live in this body, we are very well-aware of what our weaknesses are, and so we know where we fall short, and we highlight those things in our psyche. And while we do know our strengths as well, we tend to downplay them, okay? They're much- like matter of fact, because it's just a part- like this is who you are, it's like not a big deal. But the weaknesses, we don't downplay those. And why? Because we know where we're imperfect. Alright? We know where we're imperfect and we often need to have even more compassion for ourselves than we have for other people because we are very well-aware of our weaknesses. Alright again, you live in your body, you live in that mind, you know what your strengths and what your weaknesses are, and so because of knowing your weaknesses we tend to pull away that self-love and that self-value because we see the problem, we see the flaws, and we don't see the greatness. Alright so again, these are some of the things happening behind the scenes that distract or suppress your sense of self-love, and we need to be aware of these things so we can start to break free of it and develop the self-love that can help you to be successful in your relationships, in your career, in your health and your fitness, because this is the foundation for it. Alright now next I want to highlight some things- some experiential things that look at some of these four categories, and specifically starting with comparison, alright? Comparison. Now this was something that was an unconscious issue for me, but if you know where I come from then you know why it was a pretty difficult thing to get around. And so this starts with my experience, like even just looking at me, you know? Some people are probably like, 'What is Shawn? What is his race? Is he a Bruno Mars? Like I don't know.' Right? And so just for simplicity sake, when I use the term black or I use the term white, these are simply for the sake of common communication, alright? Because we are all so much more than the color coded denomination than we label ourselves with. And so this is just for the sake of communication, and you know just a reveal. So my race, essentially we'll just keep it simple of black and white. Alright? And having that experience of being a 'mixed kid' growing up was really- was really different. You know? So this is like the early eighties when some of this stuff is like taking place that I'm describing here today. And having this issue of being different- like literally I'm the only mixed kid at the schools oftentimes, was very challenging for me, you know? So my earliest memories was I lived with my grandma in a very nice neighborhood, suburban kind of atmosphere, and the school was predominantly white. We'll say 95% white, maybe even 99% white. I don't remember any black kids being at the school- actually I'm sorry, I remember one. I remember one. And having that experience, I didn't know that I was different until the environment let me know that I was different, and having terrible things said to me, you know? And being called those typical names that you would hear as a little kid is very confusing, you know? And so I just wanted to be like the other kids. And I remember this one instance walking home from school, and I'll never forget this. It's so funny, I had no idea that this would be an emotional connection, but I was walking home from school, and these kids were like calling me names. And we got in front of my house, my grandfather was in the backyard, and these kids just started- these were some white kids, and they said that, 'He's cussing.' Like they're just like- they were calling me the N-word, they were saying bad words to me, and they said that I was cussing. And my grandfather- and this was the white side of my family, alright? And he believed them. He believed that I was cussing, and he had me to go and get a switch off the tree, and he whooped me. And you know, that kind of stuck with me for awhile, you know? What's so emotional about it is my kids today, you know? I'm definitely not the little boy anymore, but just thinking about the innocence, you know? And I just want to believe that I would be more compassionate with my kids. Alright so I just need to take a second and get myself together. I again, had no idea, but that environment, there was so much love, and admiration, and attention, and positivity, but those instances can really have an effect on you, you know? And again, I didn't know that I was different, and that was kind of the causative thing for that, but everything that we go through, every challenge has a great gift in it, and it really helps to develop an ability to serve, an ability to live at another level. And so I wouldn't take back any of these situations. It's kind of messed up but it's okay, and so here's what's so interesting, that was part one. So after the second grade I moved in with my mother, and now we go from a predominantly say 99% white school to a 99% black school, alright? Total culture shock for me, and again I didn't really know that I was different. I still didn't really get it, and now I'm in a situation where the attention is different. You know there's- especially back then there was this like proclivity for like attention. You know I was a light skinned boy, right? And so a lot of girls liked me, but I had- I started like getting into scuffles with the guys. For me it was just like for no reason. A very- did not want to be that kind of guy, I was definitely not engaging in conflict, and wanted to be in that kind of situation. And so it was like a culture shock, but now I'm magnified in my difference again but for a different reason, alright? So I hope that makes sense. And so from there, guess what? Go from that back to a predominantly white school, now I'm in the deseg program. Desegregation program. Why is that even a name? That's so messed up, right? And so this is like maybe we'll say right around 1990 or 1989, something like that. And again, now I'm starting to really realize my difference, and I'm realizing the cultural differences. You know, say this is like fifth grade, and- but like I'm catching the messages, I'm conscious of them. And I remember like liking this particular girl who- at this school most of the girls were white, and her just being like, 'Ew.' You know? And like I'm used to like all these girls liking me, and now it's like- Now here's what's so funny, by the way. Cut to- I went to like a school dance, and this was like- I don't know, my junior year of high school. It was at a different school, and this girl was there, and she was all over me. I mean it was just like- now it kind of like- I'd become fashionable, right? And I'd really kind of grown into my own, and it was just like, 'Are you serious?' You know? But as a kid in her cultural influence it was just like, 'Oh no, bro.' And so again, having that experience, and then jumping to a last example I'm going to give, back over here where now middle school I'm around- it's a nicer mix of people. But there was this girl who was just- I was totally oblivious to this, and she told me this later because long story short, she ended up becoming my girlfriend. But she was walking with her boyfriend and she said, 'Oh he's so cute.' Oh man, big mistake. Because this guy- I'm just standing outside the lunch room one day with my friend, he literally just came over and just like punched me in the face. Alright? Just out of the blue. And one of the things- and I've talked about this on the show before, and I'll put it in the show notes, I actually got kicked out of high school for fighting. I got kicked out of college for fighting. It doesn't even sound real, and it's so not in my character, especially now. But I grew up in a very volatile kind of- a violent environment after I left my grandmother's house, and so I'm ready. You know? So when he hit me, like I just- I kind of put it on him a little bit, and I don't want to give favorite to any of that stuff, but that was like a changing. You know once I kind of defended myself, and then I guess the girl noticed or whatever. Long story short, kind of changed the course of things, and I kind of found my spot in my environment. Like I'm going to be this guy, the kind of like, 'I'm shy, but I'm also- like I've got a little toughness to me, but I'm a good student, but at the same time, you know if something is going down, like I'm not scared.' Like this kind of weird duality that ended up causing more problems. But my environment shaped my self-love, and so I walked around with a lot of fear, I walked around with a lot of uncertainty. I walked around with a broken identity in where do I fit in, until I kind of found my spot, and even when I did that, that limited my connection to other people, you know? That limited my relationships, that limited my view of life. You know, today- man I mean even just this community, like we've got people in basically every country in the world listening to this. How powerful is that? How powerful is that? Because we all have the same underlying fabric that drives us. So we all want to be happy, we all want to be loved, we all want to experience success, we all want to feel like we have value, we all want to feel like we have purpose, and meaning, and we're giving our gift, and we all want to know that we matter, right? We all want to know that. That's the most important thing. And so in sharing that I wanted to kind of unpack, and give you a little bit of reason, and how I understand this issue with self-love, and issue with comparison, and that each of those environments that I communicated, I would want to adapt to them, you know? I'd want to wear those clothes, I'd want to speak that way, or- you know what I'm saying? And do the things that are done in the environment. It's a natural thing, but because I was different coming into it - so different - it was very difficult for me to adapt, and I carried that with me, and I didn't really realize. I was like oblivious to my value until after I lost my health in my early twenties, and that's the reason I'm here today. It wasn't just changes physically as far as like nutrition, and sleep, and exercise, but it was also a change mentally, and beginning to love myself, and value myself, and to know that I'm capable, and to know that I matter. Right? And that wasn't just from- it wasn't just from an idea of- and developing it within myself. My value was also in the fact of like I didn't care what the other person was. Like taking and learning a lesson from the stuff that I went through, I didn't care if the person was white. I didn't care if they were black. I didn't care if they were Indian. I didn't care if they were from Nigeria. I didn't care if they were from Lithuania, Bosnia, wherever. They were my friend and I'm just there to help. I'm there to help you to get healthier. I'm your coach but I'm also your friend and I've got your back, right? That started- because I know what it feels like to be different. Working at a university for many years, having students from all over the world that come there, I had this great practice field, right? I had this great opportunity to engage and to understand like people feel different. Like let me help them to feel more comfortable. Let me help them to feel stronger in their body, right? And that can translate over into them feeling stronger mentally. So I hope that makes sense. Now part of the reason that I do what I do- you know, and I see this, and I hope I can communicate this. There's a video going around, this little girl on Instagram, and she was being bullied at school because she was dark, right? Young Girl: He said, 'Why do you have that kind of skin color? Everybody else doesn't. Why are you the only person which has it?' Girl’s Mom: And what did you say? Young Girl: I said, 'Well I'm the only one which has it,' and I told him about it. It's bad. Girl’s Mom: Did that hurt your feelings? Yeah? And what else? What else did people say about your skin? Young Girl: That were saying like, 'Why do you have it? How do you have it? Why do you have that skin color? Why do you have that color skin? Why are you that dark? Why are you that color?' Girl’s Mom: You know you're beautiful, right? Shawn Stevenson: She was so beautiful. That's what drives me. It's not just to help people lose weight. It's not just to help people prevent cancer. My mission is to help us love each other more while we're here. So that little girl, that's what drives me, you know? Seeing that video, and just knowing that that's a part of our culture. And she's the same age just about of my son, you know? And I just want all of us, especially as children, to know that we matter, to know that we're beautiful, to know that we're unique, to know that we're gifted. That's what drives me, you know? It's not just about helping people lose weight. It's not just about helping people to prevent cancer, and diabetes, and heart disease, and all these amazing things. And I've had such a great blessing and fortune to help people to do that stuff. You know? I'd have people coming into my clinic 400 blood sugar, like on Metformin, and insulin, and all this stuff, and helping them to normalize their blood sugar without medication, helping them to be free, but that's not what drives me. Alright? It's not just what drives me, it's also again about helping us to love each other and to value each other more while we're here. Now I got all the cry face on, but I want to talk about something else here, and part of self-love is identifying two things; your innate value, and your explicit value. Alright? It's about identifying these two things; your innate value and your explicit value. Now your innate value is your value as a human spirit, alright? This is what you're endowed with by you being alive here in this human experience. It's like a one in four trillion chance in like you being here at this time with your particular genetic makeup and all this stuff, it's crazy. Like you're already winning, alright? One in like four trillion chance. And with that said, understanding your innate value that you matter because you are here, that's it. You matter because you're here. That's one of the most important things to really get, and one of the things for us to push into culture, and to help each other to understand, and to embrace. It's something that so many people today are missing out on. There are people that are subject to abuse, that are subject to- just to like- there's an important word that's coming up, just being ignored or being brushed aside. They don't know that they matter. Alright so what can we do to make a change in that? Alright so that's number one. These two parts of self-love, number one is identifying your innate value. If you get that, that you just- you matter, that you're valuable just because you are, that's- it's a game changer. But here's another one, is your- there's innate value and your explicit value. Alright your explicit value, these are the things that you're competent at, or that you're exceptional at. So these explicit value components could be drawing, or singing, writing, teaching, crunching numbers, programming computers, coaching kids, being a good friend, being a good brother or sister, being a good mom or dad. How explicit and valuable is that, being a good mom or dad, right? So these are explicit things, these things that you can be competent or exceptional at that you need to start to recognize because that's part of the problem, is the things that we're good at, we don't really value ourselves for. Like how often as a parent, for the parents listening, do you acknowledge how much value you bring to the table as a parent? We're taught that you're supposed to do these things. You could have thrown the deuces a long time ago, right? You could have checked out a long time ago. You didn't have to do any of this. You did it because you're special. You did it- and it's not about being perfect, because we immediately think about the messed up stuff, like how we might be messing our kids up. You're there and you're trying. Right? There's a lot of things I promise that you do right, if you could start to acknowledge that, it really starts to cultivate and build up and repair this self-love. Alright? So even out of the sphere of parenthood, but if we take that into the sphere of any of these other things, you know? Like we take it for granted that we might have this particular skill or acclimation to doing a thing, or a gift, right? So again, we have to look at those two things; your innate value and your explicit value. And also I wanted to share this little story because part of the process of developing self-love, crazy as it sounds, I'm going to give you a big insight into this, is that we have to decide what we want. Alright? So we spend so much of our lives doing all of this random stuff, not truly stepping into our own, stepping into our greatness, embracing this opportunity, and being here right now with that innate value, and not deciding what we want, you know? And so there's a couple of issues. You know for me, I was drifting, I was definitely drifting through life until life hit me, and things changed. You know I talked about this recently with Eric Thomas when he was on the show, that you can step into the fire, you can step into the process. Like of creating a diamond, you need immense pressure, you need the fire, you need the cut. That's how you get the diamond. The cut is what gives it its value. Right? So there's no way around this. So you're just going to have to have these things happen to create a diamond, to create a great phenomenal life. Right? At the same time, you don't have to have life just grab you like the claw in the machine. What's that machine called with the claw that you go and you grab the gifts out? It's called The Claw, alright? And so I just saw a little video clip, there's like a Claw game that has like Yeezy's in it, alright? It was like these $1,000 shoes. It's crazy, you know? But so life can grab you like that, or you can put yourself into it. You can say yes and lean into the discomfort, and I promise like you actually fall in love with that, and it really becomes this exhilarating fulfilling life experience. But if you sit around and coast and don't decide what you want, that's when the random stuff happening, these seeming like problems come up as well that are trying to get you to really step into your own. So recently- and by the way, let me take a step back. My universe was so small, alright? My universe was so small. Coming from the conditions that I was in, you know again a very small world still trying to figure it out, just basic stuff of like where do I fit in, in these two cultures? But I didn't even leave the city, you know? Except like on a car drive, maybe a couple hours to my grandma's house when she moved down to Piedmont, Missouri. I know you're like, 'Oh yeah, I know where Piedmont is.' No you don't, no. No. This is like the 'boothills' like getting close to- we called it the country, like we were going down to the country. Dirt road, the whole thing. And it was a great experience, you know being a kid and having some summers there, and that kind of thing. But outside of that, I had never even gotten on an airplane until I met my then girlfriend, now wife, thank you, and I was 25 years old the first time I got onto an airplane. Like I just didn't even- it didn't occur to me, like I didn't really even want to go anywhere. Like I didn't have a drive. I didn't decide or determine that that was something that I'd do. Right? I was very- my universe was very small, like I said. And so what changed and how I'm making such an impact today, and literally- and this is crazy to even say this, and I want you to get this with me as I say it, because I don't really get it still. I've impacted the lives of millions of people. I went from this very small universe, barely influencing myself, to now that is my reality, and that happened when I actually decided what I wanted. And it's really that simple, alright? I'm not saying it's easy, I'm not saying there's not other pieces, but it's that simple. And so I just took my wife- she had a birthday recently. It's so crazy, her birthday is on New Year’s Day which is- I'm not going to say it's a problem, but it's a little bit of a problem, right? Because you know there's Christmas and the whole thing. And so I decided to throw her a surprise birthday party / New Year’s Eve party. And I'm not good at that stuff at all, you know? Like when I used to do events back in the day, but now most of the time people fly me in and I'll do their event. But we would do events, and she helped me so much to do the stuff. Like I needed her. There were so many times during the process I wanted to ask her opinion, and I'm supposed to be keeping this a secret. The biggest and most- the greatest like joy for me or gift for me was I got her sister here, which her sister lives just about four hours’ drive away, but she hasn't been here in our city for maybe like five years, and I got her sister here. I snuck them in, and surprised her with her sister being here. And so got all these friends and family that are here, and you know we did the surprise party, it went off amazing. I had recruited some good friends of hers that helped me, and it just- it was a really remarkable thing. But the gift, I wanted her to be able to pick herself. So she kept on throwing hints about the new iPhone. I love my iPhone but I'm like, 'Good, like I get it. Apple's going to keep on-' like I'm just like the perpetual fish. We all are. Like they catch us, and they throw us back in. They catch us, and throw us back in. I don't want to be a fish, alright? I don't want to be Nemo, alright? And so here's the thing, so she- and her phone was definitely having some issues, I think she had an iPhone 6 or something like that, and so I took her to the mall to get her a phone, but I wanted her to be able to pick it. And at the store, the guy comes over, it's a college kid, and you know first of all I was like, 'Okay bro listen, look at me. Look at me in my eyes. Look at me. What happened to the iPhone 9? Alright? So you get iPhone 8 comes out and iPhone X. Where's 9? I know you know something.' He was like, 'I swear.' He was like, 'I've never said this before, I swear on my grandmother's grave, I do not know.' I still didn't believe him, but anyways so we were talking, and I was kind of asking him questions about the product, and this and that. And it somehow or another came up that he wanted to- he was in college at the time, and he was interested- no, this is how it came up. He was interested in what I do, and you know he like went to my Instagram and was like, 'Holy moly.' You know, and so I'm just like, 'Dude like I'm from here. Like all this was, was me just deciding on what I wanted to do, and to help people.' And you know, we went to the podcast and he saw that the show was like number one, and that kind of thing, that was it. And so he just kind of started asking some questions, and I said, 'Listen the most important thing that you do is to decide what you want. I know this sounds simple, but I promise you have not done this yet.' He said for him, he knew that he wanted to be in marketing. You know, he wanted to get a marketing degree and do something in marketing. So I told him- and this is the truth, guys. Listen to this, the degrees, that's bonus, alright? That doesn't matter, especially today, it just doesn't. If you want to put a degree up on your wall, I mean that's what it really is because a lot of the people who are just dominating in marketing, a lot of them didn't even graduate or they didn't go to school or they graduated in something else besides marketing. Alright? And the reality is it's really about being great at what you do and understanding culture. And so what I encouraged him to do, and I'm not saying- and I told him this specifically as well, that I'm not saying don't go to school, alright? I think it's incredibly valuable for relationships, and for character building. But are they going to teach you how to be a world class marketer and to be successful? And he told me like, he was like, 'All I want to do is to be able to support my expensive clothes taste.' Alright? So he wanted to be in the- like he wanted the Louie V underwear I guess, I don't know, but he apparently likes expensive clothes, alright? I was like, 'You can do that, but learn from the best.' Alright? So I mentioned a couple of folks that I've met and had the opportunity to work with, some of these people like- I was like, 'Dude are you following Gary Vaynerchuk? Are you following Gary V? He's kind of really popping in culture now and he has this really interesting style that millennials and just younger folks kind of identify and can listen and learn from him. But he's giving real gems on marketing and on connection.' The way he does it, I don't know, it's not for everybody, but for a lot of people they really connect with him. Andy Frisella, I was like, 'He lives here in St. Louis, Andy Frisella.' It's hard to go around St. Louis anywhere and not see somebody rocking one of his shirts, it's the supplement superstores. Right? I didn't even know what it was. I didn't know who he was, or that he was the owner of the company, but I saw those shirts for years. Right? And I was like, 'Are you following them on Instagram? Are you looking at their YouTube videos?' Like I was giving him the names and stuff, and here's the problem. Here's the problem. Let me explain the problem to you guys. So I asked him number one, I was like, 'Do you listen to podcasts?' He was like, 'Yeah, yeah.' And he works at Apple, so you would think like a little bit maybe. I was like, 'What's your favorite podcast?' He didn't really have an answer because he doesn't listen to podcasts. I asked him does he know Gary V? Does he know Andy Frisella? Pat Flynn? You know, who's been on the show. And he was like, 'Yeah, I've heard of them.' No you haven't. He literally has not heard of them. Here's one of the problems with deciding what we want, and doing what we want, and developing self-love, is that we don't like to appear to not know something. Alright? This is a big human flaw, alright? We don't want to be the person that doesn't know something so we'll be like, 'Yeah, yeah of course, yeah I know such-and-such.' No you don't. Like slow down. Right? You're missing on an opportunity to learn something. So I'm like- and I had to work at this of course, but I'm like, 'Yeah, no I've never heard of it. Nope.' People mention names, products, books. 'No I'm sorry, I've never heard of it. You know, tell me about it.' Whatever. You know, like be more willing to be a student. This is part of the problem. We think we've got it down and you can miss on an opportunity, because I was giving him straight gems of resources that could change the course of his life if he pays attention. But eventually I said something that clicked through. I think it was when he saw the podcast, and he went and got a notebook and started writing stuff down. Alright? Because I guess it's that see to believe kind of thing as well. And so again, a big problem with learning and learning quickly is that we don't want to look like or appear that we don't know something. Alright? So address that in your psyche because that is not self-love. That is not self-love. So we kind of took a little detour here, but to bring it back, I think it's really important for this, and these are- like the number one thing you have to do is decide what you want. Alright? That is one of the most important things you can do to develop your self-love, and what direction you want to go, and make it happen. Now so number one, why don't we do this? Well number one, we don't believe that we can have it. You have to address this. Alright? So often we don't believe- like you've got an underlying belief that, 'I can't have a great relationship.' 'I can't have whatever dollar amount in my bank account.' 'I can't have this particular fit body.' I promise you, if you were carrying around this in your psyche that you can't be fit, you're going to fail. It doesn't matter if you get the best workout program, coaching, nutrition, all this stuff; you're going to fail because you don't believe you can do it, you're going to self-sabotage. You're going to find a way to make yourself right. It's called self-fulfilling prophecy, or Thomas theorem, but psychologists have been looking at this for centuries, alright? We literally are creating what we believe, alright? And it sometimes takes a big thing to come in and change that, or you can change it yourself. Just decide to actually believe that you can have that thing, alright? Now number one is that we don't believe that we can have it. Number two, we don't give ourselves permission to actually do it, and this is important as well. The self-love, cultivating self-love, you start to develop this sense of like a right, or giving yourself permission to actually do or have the thing that you want. And so looking at this concept of giving yourself permission, it might sound really simple, but please don't look past this. Alright? So often again, we're indoctrinated with these ideas that you can't do this, you can't be this, this is something that you can't attain. You actually have to give yourself permission to actually want what you really want. I know this is crazy, because it starts with the belief and allowing yourself to actually want it. Giving yourself permission- like if you want to have a certain relationship, or you want to have a certain car, or you want to have a certain whatever, you have to give yourself permission to want what you really want. So often we'll suppress, we'll allow ourselves to believe that we can have average if that, right? We'll allow ourselves to believe that, 'I can get this, but that is out of my reach.' And as soon as you believe that, it's off limits to you. Alright? But you have to start to give yourself permission to actually want what you really want. Alright? You have the right to it. And even in the process of moving towards that, or in the process of obtaining that, accomplishing that, whatever it might be, even if you don't reach it you're going to be a one hundred times greater person in the development, in the character traits that you develop, in your determination, in your strength, in your energy, in your wisdom. The person that you become is really the great gift, alright? Because the thing isn't really- we're talking about a physical thing now. But once you have it, you know it's just a thing. Like we get inundated, we get jaded, we get comfortable with it, and so it's not even a big deal. Like so a lot of people will go into depression after they attain something they've been working so hard for because it's not in the thing, it's in the feeling. Alright that's what we're really going for, but you've got to give yourself permission to go after it. You've got to give yourself permission to want what you really want and decide, like just decide to move in that direction. Alright so I hope that makes sense, this is a huge component of self-love because it helps to open up so many doors. And I'm saying this from my personal experience, and then seeing this clinically with so many other people when they start to decide what they really want and walk in that direction, they start to create a kinship with themselves. They start to develop more self-support, more self-love, more self-compassion by deciding what they want and moving in that direction. Now another thing obviously with self-love and self-care is your nutrition, alright? And also specifically a lot of this is taking place in our mind, right? A lot of this is taking place in that real estate in our brain specifically, and we want to make sure that we're getting some ideal nutrition and support for our brain. Now there's one thing clinically proven to help to protect and even create something called neurogenesis, creating new neurons, alright? And specifically helping to protect your neurons. So protecting your brain from aging, and that is lion's mane, alright? Lion's mane. This is a medicinal mushroom- I'm not talking about like literally like from a- 'roar,' like a lion, their mane. It's a type of mushroom. And I get my lion's mane from Four Sigmatic, and it's amazing, like I even had it today, and it's a lion's mane coffee. So organic coffee, lion's mane medicinal mushroom, and the University of Malaya found that lion's mane is clinically proven to be neuroprotective and even helps to reverse some of the damage that can be done from actual trauma, alright? There's very, very few things that we are aware of in science today that can do that. Alright so So that's and you get 15% off all of their mushroom coffees, their mushroom elixirs, their mushroom hot chocolates. Alright, my wife is really into their Matcha. They've got a Mushroom Matcha mix and she's in love with that. And so we've got that rich dense source of chlorophyll going with that one. So I love them so much, I literally have Four Sigmatic every single day, and everything I do has a purpose. So if you're not utilizing Four Sigmatic yet, I mean you are really, really missing out. This is something very, very important and valuable moving forward. You know, we're getting so much more science coming out about the benefits of these medicinal mushrooms from rishi and improving sleep quality, to cordyceps and improving athletic performance, and of course lion's mane with literally improving your brain. And there are so many others, but head over, check them out, for 15% off. And so we're going to close today with five steps to love and value yourself more. I'm going to give you some specific to-do items to help to really make this a part of who you are. So number one in the five steps to develop more self-love and self-value is to develop standards. Alright so this works both ways. Your self-love affects your standards, and your standards affect your self-love. Right, so I want you to begin to cultivate standards in your relationships, alright? What you will allow in your relationships, what you allow in your inner circle, alright? You literally are a part of your environment. Your environment becomes you and you become it, alright? Now I'm talking about from the level of like mirror neurons, and how your brain is literally creating synaptic connections based on what you're witnessing. And if you're witnessing drama, if you're witnessing complaining, not enough-ness, if you're witnessing excuses, guess what? That's kind of going to be your culture. So starting to cultivate standards in your relationships. This doesn't mean to end your relationships, but it's about communication, but sometimes that might be the case. You know, that might be just what the doctor ordered, but it's developing standards in that, and also in your health and fitness. You know, certain things- there are rules of health that I live by, and I did a show on that, I'll put that in the show notes for you, and those are my standards. You know? And so start developing standards. Number two on these five steps to love and value yourself more is to acknowledge positive feedback. Alright? Acknowledge the positive feedback from yourself and from others. Alright from others meaning when people are complimenting you, 'You know, you did a great job with the production.' Or 'You did a great job in coaching the team.' Or 'You did a great job in teaching the class today,' or whatever the case may be- or 'You look beautiful today.' Right? 'Oh my goodness, like you're glowing.' Whenever you get these compliments, so often we don't acknowledge them, like we push them to the side because we don't value ourselves, right? We're carrying around this perpetual sense of like, 'I'm flawed,' which you are for sure, we all have flaws, but you're also beautiful, you're also amazing. And so when you can embrace and take in those moments and acknowledge them, I think it's really, really life changing when you can consciously do and catch yourself. Because I've worked with people, and then they would catch themselves doing it, brushing off the compliments. Alright? And so also just to point this out, women tend to have a little bit more issue with this. You know? So when you get that compliment that you're looking great, or you're beautiful, take it in, you know? Just take a second and say, 'Thank you. I receive that, I really do,' instead of just brushing it off, 'Oh this old dress? This was made by gnomes back in 1947.' Take the compliment in, don't brush it off, 'Oh it's not a big deal.' It is a big deal, you're a big deal, so I hope that makes sense. Alright now from yourself also, acknowledge the positive feedback from yourself. A professor of Human Development at the University of Texas in Austin, this is Dr. Neff suggests that a set of exercises like writing yourself a letter of support just as you might do to a friend you are concerned about is one of the strategies here to develop more self-love and self-affection. Listing your best and worst traits. Alright? So it's not like, 'Oh you're just so amazing,' but reminding yourself that nobody is perfect, and thinking of steps you might take to help you to feel better about yourself are also recommended. So just thinking about steps to help you to feel better about yourself. And so this is a great strategy here of giving some self-acknowledgement, is writing a letter to yourself. Now this can be like a simple like- maybe a love letter, or a letter talking about, 'You know what? We've got this issue, but you know, I love you still, and this is just a part of your growth and development,' framing it like that. But also this can be something- this might sound a little bit more morbid, alright but even writing like an obituary for yourself. Now hear me out, this is creepy, I don't like it, but I did this before. This was on the recommendation of Michael Hyatt in his book 'Living Forward,' which is a really, really great book. There was an exercise to do this, like what would people say about you when you're no longer here, you know? And just like- so Shirley, I'm just going to use the example of Shirley, alright I don't know where this is coming from. Oh I remember, this is crazy, I did not plan this. Shirley was like my first like for real, real Valentine's Day crush, alright? Now here's the issue- because there was an issue alright? I was like ten, and she was like sixteen. But she's a grown woman, alright? And I remember I went and bought the chocolates, I can remember seeing them, bought the chocolates, had the whole like- I don't know what I was thinking, like how this was going to work out, right? I'm a kid, I'm literally a kid, and we went to the skating rink. You know, it was like her family, and my family, like this was kind of like all of our like- this is community. And Shirley was skating with some other boy, you know? But he was sixteen or seventeen, you know? And I was just like so heartbroken, and you know just silly stuff. But Shirley, wherever you are, your loss. No, I'm just kidding. I'm just kidding. Big love, and man, like she was just amazing. She was amazing. You know, like our families were kind of intersected, and so thank you for the memories. She did show me a lot of love, and that's why I had this crush on her, because like she gave me- like she made me feel important and she made me feel like I mattered. You know? And that's what can happen, you know? And you know, making a kid feel like they matter. So now, with that said, Shirley- actually let's use a different name, alright? Mary, we'll use Mary, and Mary was a great spirit. Mary was very giving, and loving, and she was always there for her friends. Mary did an exceptional job in the pet shop that she worked at. You know, she always made sure that the kittens felt at home while they were there. Whatever, now I'm getting into a whole story, alright? But bottom line is like writing what people would say about you when you're no longer here. So it's another little exercise that you could do, but I highly encourage the strategy of writing yourself a love letter, alright? This could be one of those things that helps to flesh out and get your- things that are in the background of your mind out to the front and how valuable you are. Alright number three in these five steps to self-love and to value yourself more is to practice self-care. Alright? Practices- let me put this- put an 'S' on it. Practices of selfcare, and please hear this, this is a practice. This isn't like something that is just automatic, you do it one time or a couple times, you've got it. It's a practice of self-care. So it goes both ways. Your self-love affects your self-care and your self-care affects your self-love. So have practices of self-care. Maybe these are implementing strategies of having daily exercise, or a daily walk, or making sure that you're drinking water when you wake up each day, or making sure that at least once a week you're doing like a magnesium soak, right? Taking a nice hot bath and relaxing, or practice some meditation. But it's having these practices of self-care start to influence your mind and your psyche to let you know that you love yourself, alright? So that's number three. Number four here on the five steps to self-love and to value yourself more is to forgive yourself. Part of the reason that we struggle to really move on to higher levels and to really embrace our opportunity in life is that we're not forgiving ourselves for the things that we've been through or done in the past. Alright? So to give an example specifically for this one is not forgiving yourself for not loving yourself. Alright? Now you've got to really, really get this because this can be a problem. That can added to the fuel and the fire of why you don't love or support yourself, is that you're mad at yourself because you weren't doing those things. Alright now I'm bringing this up because this can happen, so I want you to forgive yourself for not loving yourself. I want you to forgive yourself for not having that selfsupport. I want you to forgive yourself for not recognizing your innate value. I want you to forgive yourself for not recognizing and loving the things that you're good at. I want you to forgive yourself for not recognizing and embracing your gifts. I want you to forgive yourself for not loving and admiring and respecting your progress, and your ability to overcome. Alright? I want you to forgive yourself for those things. And start now. By forgiving yourself this opens the opportunity to start doing all of those things. Alright? So that's number four is to forgive yourself. And number five, our final one here on these five steps to love and value yourself more is to be intentional. Alright? Number five is to be intentional. Specifically be intentional about having a meaningful, healthy life. It's not just going to happen on accident. You have to be intentional about that. You have to be intentional about valuing yourself. It's not just going to happen. You have to make it an intention that, 'This is who I am, this is what I do, and this is how I'm moving forward in my life.' Alright? So be intentional. Everybody, I appreciate you so much for tuning into the show today. I hope you got a lot of value out of this, and I hope that this opens up some doors for you, and I ask that you have some compassion on me for sharing my story, and some of these different areas and things that are difficult to talk about. And please understand that everything again that we go through helps to create that diamond, right? The pressure, the fire, the getting cut really helps to create something special, so don't shy away from it. You know, embrace it. When things are happening, understand like, 'Hey this is a part of my story. I might not like this right now, but I'm going to keep moving forward, I'm going to be intentional, and I'm going to make something special out of this.' Alright? And if you're not already aware, you've got- it's the hottest thing on the streets. It's the hottest thing on the streets, Model Mondays. Every Monday I'm sending out a special email with three powerhouse nuggets. This can be additional information from episodes of The Model Health Show, just more. Just more of The Model Health Show. This can be new books that I've come across with incredible research that I want to share with you that I might not get a chance to talk about on The Model Health Show. This can be resources, and articles, and new studies, and all new kinds of cool stuff. New gadgets that I might be experimenting with, just really great value, so make sure you're taking advantage of this every Monday, it's Model Mondays. Go to Alright, and get hooked up. Become a part of this movement. This is- it's hot right now, I'm telling you. This is really, really cool stuff that I'm sharing each week, so make sure to head over and check that out. Guys, I've got some incredible guests and show topics coming up, and I promise you we're just going to keep taking this to another level. Alright, I appreciate you immensely. Take care, have an amazing day, and I'll talk with you soon. And for more after the show, make sure to head over to That's where you can find all of the show notes, you can find transcriptions, videos for each episode, and if you've got a comment you can leave me a comment there as well. And please make sure to head over to iTunes and leave us a rating to let everybody know that the show is awesome, and I appreciate that so much. And take care, I promise to keep giving you more powerful, empowering, great content to help you transform your life. Thanks for tuning in.

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  1. Hello Shawn, I’m Yuko from Japan. I became a devoted listener of your podcast after I read your book ‘SLEEP SMARTER’ which I found at a local bookstore in a rural area of Japan, Ehime prefecture in Shikoku Island. Now I have both English and Japanese translation version in my bookshelf.
    Needless to say, the contents of every episode are amazing, the more I listen to you, the stronger I can feel the generosity, warmth and quality of your personality like I can trust this guy completely on a very personal level, and which has been making me wonder where those feelings come from.
    Now it came home to me and fully understood why I’ve been feeling that way after I listened to your personal story on this episode 269, I was really related to your story and it truly moved me.
    Thanks to you, I ended up reading Bruce Lipton’s ‘The Biology Of Belief’, David Perlmutter’s ‘Grain Brain’, Catherine Shanahan’s ‘Deep Nutrition’, Mark Gober’s ‘An End of Upside Down Thinking’, Jhon Gray’s ‘Mars and Venus’, Larry Dossey, Dean Radin…
    I can’t appreciate enough, Shawn. I am so grateful that I found your book in a bookstore. That was the beginning of everything. I believe that energy waves entangled to make it happen this way. hahaha

    1. Wow! This is so incredible (: Thank you so much for being in this journey with us!

  2. I’m not sure where to start with this podcast, there’s some pretty powerful stuff and raw emotion all bundled together. As another commenter stated it takes a man to show emotion and be ok with showing emotion, thanks for being the model in that space and working through it to finish the podcast you are a true inspiration. This is one of the reasons I opted out of traditional media which is over polished and shallow in comparison. The raw emotion in this episode almost caught me a couple of times, given that I was driving at the time this was a bit offputting ;). It made me realise I need to develop the strength, self-love and compassion you showed in this podcast and for that this makes you my hero. Thank you for all you put out in the world and please don’t stop!

  3. This was a great podcast, Shawn! Thank you so much for sharing your experience and emotions…so powerful it made me cry.

  4. Thanks for sharing your story!
    I was trying to sign up for Model Mondays and when I press “get access” nothing happened and it said it was only 50% complete. Didn’t know if its a problem on my end but will try again later! You’re amazing! Keep your fire burning bright! xo

  5. It takes a man to show emotion and be ok with showing emotion. This is what we need to teach our boys as well as our girls. Thank you for being man enough to share.

  6. Thanks again Shawn! What an amazing show/podcast. I was blown away by the content and delivery! I was just reading about “Self Love” when in comes to relationships and received your email regarding this episode. This is one of the most important things we can do for ourselves and I completely missed it but thanks to you and my constant need to better myself, I’m aware of this and ready to develop it. You are truly a guru when it comes to complete healthcare which encompasses so many subject topics. I’m waiting for your next book/tour…best wishes always!


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