Every July 4th in America, we celebrate the adoption of the Declaration of Independence, which took place on July 4, 1776. However, although we celebrate our independence as a country, with the threats and the influx of violence and other harm this country has faced, I know that many of you don’t truly feel free. What you might not realize is that you can have independence, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that you are free.
Independence is a state of being on your own. It is gained through some form of physical action you or someone else has taken on your behalf. Whereas, freedom is a mindset gained through your action of self-love. It is perceived that freedom ensures safety. When you are free to love you, you have created an inner and outer layer of safety, protecting yourself from the external threats put forth by others who can’t and won’t love you like you love yourself. You can celebrate your independence, but the question is, are you free?
Freedom is not just a physical state; it is also a spiritual and emotional state. It is a mindset that doesn’t start with the Declaration of Independence. Freedom starts with how you see and feel about you. No matter how independent you are, until you love yourself unconditionally, you will not be free. As a matter of fact, love is freedom and the more you love you, the freer you will become.
Too often, many of you see love as a word to use loosely, in order to gain or maintain control over others. In all actuality, because love is an emotion, it is action. It takes the action of love for you to freely release the things, the people, the situations, and the circumstances that have encumbered you and rendered you helpless and hopeless. When you love you, you allow yourself to rise above whatever or whoever seems to block your growth and success.
When you truly love you, you are free of anger, bitterness, guilt, shame, malice, lack of forgiveness, animosity, depression, anxiety, and many other self-defeating emotions. Self-love allows independence to become your reality. It is recognized in your walk, in your talk, in the way you dress, in the people you associate with, as well as the boundaries you set with others, for an in your life.
In order for you to celebrate your personal independence and freedom on Independence Day, it is imperative that you begin to assess where you are with loving you. In order for you to engage in your assessment of love for yourself, you must first define love; not from the perspective of others, but from your inner perspective, entailing the deep and passionate feeling that you have for you, as well as the deep and passionate feeling that you seek from others. As a result, you will come to discover what and how the powerful emotion of love can allow you to accept you and to be you, while at the same time, accepting others and allowing them to be themselves.
If you are still holding onto the hurt, the pain, and the disappointments of your past, it is difficult for you to have a freedom mindset. Here’s where the act of forgiveness for yourself emerges, and then forgiveness for others comes into play. Too often, you want to work at forgiving others, while beating up on you. The bottom line is, everything starts with you and ends with you, including forgiveness.
If you awake each and every morning, or most mornings, while being a slave to negative thoughts, negative emotions, negative actions, and negative conversations, your heart is in need of a an emotional makeover. This emotional makeover helps you to cleanse and remove the toxic emotions derived from your past and sometimes present experiences. Start by letting go of your past and begin looking through the windshield of your life, as you behold your bright future ahead of you. Only glance into the rearview mirror of your life every now and then, to ensure that you have moved past the negative things, negative people, negative situations, and negative circumstances, in order for you to move forward. During your emotional makeover, you’ll also learn to let love and positivity in, as you escort hate and negativity out. You’ll claim the assets in life ad rid yourself of the liabilities…no matter who and what they are!
As you have heard me state on many occasions, your heart is too small to carry people in it. Although your heart is not large enough for the negative stuff to abide, it is large enough for love to take up all the space it needs. Now, I am not talking pie in the sky, or some utopia, but I am talking about a state of independence, a freedom, and a peace that is totally immeasurable when you have a heart filled with love, for you and for others.
The processes of defining love, assessing where you are with your love for yourself, forgiving yourself, in preparation for forgiving others, is crucial to you moving to a place where you can rid yourself of mess and stress. And I know you sometimes don’t believe you can be without stress. However, it’s the mess that contributes to your stress. Mess prohibits and blocks love, freedom, and independence. This includes messy people, messy situations, and messy circumstances. When you let go of the mess, it is easier for you to let love in!
The more you truly and freely love you, you will recognize mess from a mile away. Mess is a threat to your level of current and future levels of equilibrium. Love uncovers mess and conquers stress! Love disrobes and pulls the cover from over the messy people, the messy situations, and the messy circumstances of your life. Love becomes the life shield for you to use to protect you from either gaining or maintaining a slave mentality, on your journey of having to a freedom mindset.
It is past time for you to use the action of love to free you and to help you to free others from the chains of negativity, allowing you and others to have a freedom-centered mindset. When you truly and freely love you, you give yourself permission to truly and freely love others.
Your independence, freedom, and safety start with the love within you, along with the love that you share with others. Love is more powerful than any hatred or any violence that can ever attack our country, our families, or other loved ones. When you love you and love others unconditionally, freedom becomes your mantra, and interdependence becomes the norm, rather than the exception. As a result, you will live by love and stand on the premise of love, no matter what; recognizing that LOVE IS! Now that’s something to celebrate, not only on Independence Day, but three hundred and sixty-five days a year!