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Love Yourself But Not Too Much By Dr Shanks Wang
Love Yourself, But Not Too Much By Dr. Shanks Wang
Smart Brains Spotlight
You learn something new every day; what did you learn today?
Learning should be for life. Every moment of every day we are being presented with new and important lessons.
Here we will present you one handpicked new and important lesson every day from smart brains and experts around the world.
Today we learned from Dr. Shanks Wang that why we should “love yourself but not too much“!
Love Yourself, but Not Too Much
Answer by Dr Shanks Wang from Australia. All credit goes to Dr. Shanks Wang. Thank you!
(Warning: As requested by some viewers — The following answer contains an image of self-harm which may make you feel uncomfortable.)
Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is a strange little thing. It sucks the very essence of life out of you, until what remains in your heart is a pit of deepest and darkest abyss. A void which can never be filled with love, for someone who does not even love himself, does not deserve the love from others.
Or so they said.
About a decade ago when I was still a rebellious teen, I was diagnosed with this goddamned illness. I was emotionally unstable, self-harming, having trust-issues and generally a hormonal mess. I had took a penknife and cut my forearm multiple times. I had threatened my beloved parents, who I have yet learned to humanize, with suicide. I was depressed and had scars on my arm not quite unlike these:
‘John’ was my best friend. He was, at that moment in my life, the only person I could trust in the whole universe. He was the classic model student who got everything sorted out. Impeccable grades, athletic and highly sociable, I thought he was smart.
I was yet to find out how smart he actually was.
One evening as we were walking home, John turned towards me and spoke in a serious tone.
“Shanks, I think you should start accepting other people into your life. Especially your parents, dude. They truly love you, and you’ve brought nothing but heartbreak to them in the last couple of months.”
I heaved a heavy sigh. If only he understood.
“Tell me John, how can I learn to accept and love others, if I don’t even love myself.” What a truly obnoxious brat I was.
John stopped in his tracks and looked me squarely in the eyes with an expression on his face I could not quite discern.
“Look, I’m only telling you this because I’m your friend, and some things need to be said. I don’t think you don’t love yourself. I think you love yourself too much. No, before you open your mouth, hear me out first. You know the happiness equation we were talking about? Reality — expectations? Your expectations are way too high. And when you couldn’t alleviate your reality to become the dream person you want to be, when you couldn’t receive the positive attention that you think you deserve, you resort to garnering negative attention — any sort of attention possible — by cutting yourself and being a histrionic mess of a person. But make no mistakes Shanks, your lack of self-esteem is absolutely a result of loving yourself too much and NOT too little.”
All this coming from a green boy of sixteen.
No, John did not cure me of my BPD — you can’t cure BPD by talking. But he did change my perspective forever.
That is why I don’t agree with the popularized saying, “You need to love yourself before you can love others.” I call bullshit. You need to raise your self-esteem. You already love yourself. Think of it. The reason why people have self-esteem issues is because of over-inflated expectations, and the reason why people have high expectations on themselves is because they love themselves too much.
Do you know what “not loving yourself” actually looks like? During my studies and training as a doctor, I came across a few psychiatric patients diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder with clinical Nihilism. And trust me, nihilism is way scarier than just having low self-esteem.
So those of you who suffer from low self esteem, STOP GIVING YOURSELF EXCUSES. Ironically, one of the best way to boost your sense of self-worth is to spread love to others.
Interesting how a smart boy like ‘John’ can teach you life lessons that you will remember throughout adulthood.
Reference: Dr. Shanks Wang. “What did someone do that made you think they were really smart??” originally appeared on Quora, the place to gain and share knowledge, empowering people to learn from others and better understand the world.
How to Spot the 9 Traits of Borderline Personality Disorder (MedCircle)
Thank you, ” Youtube – MedCircle “.
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If you think about it, our lives are an endless pursuit of answers and new questions. So how can YOU take action to ensure that your learning never comes to an end?