As I began to love myself…

Charlie Chaplin Aged 26

This poem was thought to have been given as a speech by Charlie Chaplin on his 70th birthday.

Over at he TLC Hub we love this poem as it is very much in keeping with the Gestalt way of being and very much in the moment!

As I began to love myself 
I found that anguish and emotional suffering 
are only warning signs that I was living 
against my own truth. 
Today, I know, this is Authenticity.

As I began to love myself 
I understood how much it can offend somebody 
if I try to force my desires on this person, 
even though I knew the time was not right 
and the person was not ready for it, 
and even though this person was me. 
Today I call this Respect.

As I began to love myself 
I stopped craving for a different life, 
and I could see that everything 
that surrounded me 
was inviting me to grow. 
Today I call this Maturity.

As I began to love myself 
I understood that at any circumstance, 
I am in the right place at the right time, 
and everything happens at the exactly right moment. 
So I could be calm. 
Today I call this Self-Confidence.

As I began to love myself 
I quit stealing my own time, 
and I stopped designing huge projects 
for the future. 
Today, I only do what brings me joy and happiness, 
things I love to do and that make my heart cheer, 
and I do them in my own way 
and in my own rhythm. 
Today I call this Simplicity.

As I began to love myself 
I freed myself of anything 
that is no good for my health – 
food, people, things, situations, 
and everything that drew me down 
and away from myself. 
At first I called this attitude a healthy egoism. 
Today I know it is Love of Oneself.

As I began to love myself 
I quit trying to always be right, 
and ever since 
I was wrong less of the time. 
Today I discovered that is Modesty.

As I began to love myself 
I refused to go on living in the past 
and worrying about the future. 
Now, I only live for the moment, 
where everything is happening. 
Today I live each day, 
day by day, 
and I call it Fulfillment.

As I began to love myself 
I recognized 
that my mind can disturb me 
and it can make me sick. 
But as I connected it to my heart, 
my mind became a valuable ally. 
Today I call this connection Wisdom of the Heart.

We no longer need to fear arguments, 
confrontations or any kind of problems 
with ourselves or others. 
Even stars collide, 
and out of their crashing, new worlds are born. 
Today I know: This is Life!

The actual author is a re-translation (from Portuguese-BR) of a text from the book “When I Loved Myself Enough” by Kim & Alison McMillen (2001).

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