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Today's Podcast Episode

Hi and welcome to today's podcast episode. I am super happy to be here, pull up a chair, grab a cup of tea or if you're cleaning the house, driving your car.

Hello, lovely to meet you again. How are you doing?

I'm just back from Delphi.

That's probably why I'm sounding a little bit happy.

I had the most wonderful experience. Delphi is a hotel in Connemara and I booked it a few weeks ago, way before I had my back pain and it was just brilliant.

It's a hotel that's in the middle of nowhere, right in the heart of Connemara.

Nearly Nan and you arrive, you can book activities, you can go to the spa, but you're pretty much stuck out there in the hotel in the hotel grounds.

So if you're somebody that loves eating nature walking and moving your body, this place is for you.

We just spent the whole time walking.

There was nothing else to do.

We booked activities.

I booked the high ropes and the mountain biking and archery for me, Joe and our two kids, Arthur and Emily now because of my back and I want to recover quick.

I didn't take any risks.

So I didn't do the high ropes and the mountain biking, but the three of them loved it, loved it, loved it so much.

I did the archery really cool.

I beat Joe and the kids more importantly.

And uh it was just a great trip because when you're not doing your activities with the kids, you can go on all the lovely nature trails and walk trails they have in their grounds in the hotel.

So the whole thing is super safe.

I mean, we wouldn't have allowed them, but the kids could go off and walk if they wanted to.

There's no cars, there's nobody in that uh, in the grounds that aren't part of the hotel and then you just go back to the hotel and you eat food and you chill out in your room.

Um It was just a wonderful weekend if you love moving and you love being out in nature and you want to get away from it all.

I mean, the reception is so bad on the phone and you want to, you can treat yourself because it's definitely a treat.

Um, oh, go to Delphi.

Shout out to Delphi.

I must review their, review it on their website.

It was absolutely amazing.

I feel refreshed and raring to go.

We only went for two nights.

It was absolutely brilliant.

I hope you're keeping well.

Today's podcast episode.

I'm going to chat to you about self love.

Self love is something I've become really, really passionate about recently when I've realized that all of my problems like overeating, drinking too much alcohol, um jumping up and down on the weighing scales hating on my body have all come from a lack of self love and all those problems like scrolling on our phones too much.

Um, being overweight, overeating, overdrinking, they're symptoms of problems, they're not the problems, they're symptoms of problems.

And for a lot of us, if we think about it, we can trace the problem back to a lack of self love.

Now for years, I've been hearing about self love.

How much do you love yourself?

Do you love yourself on social media and in magazines and in newspapers and the answer to me would always be yes, of course.

I love myself.

You have this instinct.

Of course, I love myself.


Don't, I go away on trips.

Don't I buy myself clothes.

Yes, I love myself.

But when we dig a little bit deeper in this episode, I want you to really keep an open mind about whether you love yourself or not because it's all well and good saying it.

But it's the action that I want you to focus on in this episode.

Um See, do you really and truly actually love yourself or does the rational, logical side of your brain take over and tell you that you love yourself.

The definition, loving yourself often referred to as self love is a fundamental aspect of personal well being and mental health.

It involves having a positive and caring relationship with yourself similar to the way you might love and care for somebody else.

So interesting that self love involves having a positive and caring relationship with yourself, positive and caring relationship with yourself in the way you might love and care for somebody else.

So all the way through this episode, I want you to be questioning and figuring out whether you love yourself the way you do with other people that you love.

So I want you to think of somebody now that you love so much in your life and think about the way you treat their boundaries and how much you respect them and honor their needs and how important it is for you that they take care of themselves, that they love themselves and that they make time for themselves.

And how supportive you are and gentle and kind and caring you are to them.

And then I want you to ask yourself, do you apply that same way to yourself?

Do you respect your boundaries as much as this person you love or less or more?

Do you care about yourself?

Do you take action on yourself, prioritize yourself?

Keep your boundaries as much more or less than the person you love?

And if you struggle to wonder, do you love yourself?

A really good tip is to always compare it to somebody you love and just ask yourself, do you treat yourself the way you treat this person that you love?

And the answer will become really clear.

Recognizing that you don't love yourself can be challenging.

I feel like it's a real knee jerk thing to go.

Yeah, of course, I love myself.



I only spend X amount of money on a pair of jeans last week or something like that.

So just be aware that it can be challenging that it involves serious introspection and self awareness and keep an open mind throughout this episode, we can lose our self love through a couple of ways that I want to go through with you.

Now, number one, you've had a negative life experience.

So if you've been been through a traumatic event such as bullying or abuse or neglect, um this, this can significantly impact your self esteem and self love, these experiences can create deep emotional wounds that make it challenging to maintain a positive self image.

And often you're, you'll find that your inner critic, you're loud, inner critic, the voice that tells you the negative things for some of you, it'll be the voice of the person that you were bullied by or neglected or abused.

Um, if you've been in an abusive relationship or, or, or you've been bullied or any of those horrible negative things that very often that voice is with you still and left unchecked, your self love ghosts and your self esteem is so low.

Another way um can be um unrealistic social comparison.

So compounded over time, you can really get a low self self love.

So constantly comparing yourself to others on social media or your neighbors or your friends can lead to feelings of massive inadequacy thinking you're not good enough that you're not enough that your neighbors have it, your friends have it, social media, everybody seems to have it and you don't that left unchecked.

If you're the type of person that just is constantly comparing yourself to others and your self worth is so tied up into how you compare yourself to others, you're going to run into challenges.

Another way with that social comparison is through with your body like the unrealistic beauty standards and the things that we see in magazines and newspapers and online and you comparing yourself to that can really bring about low feelings of self love, like hating your body, thinking your stomach is too big, not liking your face, picking apart different aspects of your body, which I feel nearly all women do.

Your stomach isn't good enough.

Your legs aren't trim enough, your hips aren't small enough.

And always searching for this idealistic body type through, under eating and over exercise.

I know if I exercise more and eat less, I'll get to exactly where I want to be and never thinking for a second that you might just be driven through hating on yourself.

And when you're driven through hating on yourself, you're not going to experience true health.

So paying attention to whether you have that or not, but that can be a real symptom that you may be, um, have such low self love for yourself.

A critical self talk, real critical self talk.

Um, we lose our self love when our critical self talk gets louder and louder and when you internalize your harsh inner critic, it can really erode self love over time.

If you're calling yourself fat and ugly and stupid and horrible and not good enough, not clever enough on a daily basis, all that's going to happen is that your lack of love to yourself is going to become so small that it's going to start having an impact on how you treat yourself in the day and in the week and you're going to find it very difficult to treat yourself well and to prioritize self care.

If you don't love yourself, if you don't love yourself, and it can be very difficult to find self compassion for yourself.

When your inner critic is really loud, when your inner critic is telling yourself that you're not good enough.

Also perfectionist.

If you've been a perfectionist since you've known yourself, that can be a real sign that you have a lack of self love.

Striving for perfection and feeling like you've got impossibly high standards and you never meet those standards can lead to self criticism and dissatisfaction with yourself.

Perfectionism often prevents individuals from you guys from recognizing your self worth your love outside of your achievements.

Relationships, if you've been in a dysfunctional or abusive relationship that can really undermine your self love or your self esteem, or if you've been in toxic relationships, you can internalize constant negative messages that you're getting and believe you deserve mistreatment.

So if you've been in an abusive relationship or a toxic relationship might be with your mother or your father or a sibling or child or friend and you've been constantly internalizing negative messages and you've low self-worth, you mightn't be walking around saying to yourself I don't love myself, but you mightn't be showing up to workouts, you might be overeating, you mightn't be connecting with friends.

So your action is showing you that your self worth is low, even though the rational, logical side of you might be thinking.

Of course, I love myself, past traumas, unresolved traumas, childhood trauma, unresolved emotional wounds can impact self love and self-worth trauma can lead to feelings of shame and self blame.

So if you're listening to this now and you're like, ok, yeah, those things have happened to me, I've been bullied in the past or I have a loud inner critic or I've been in a toxic relationship and that has led me to not feel so good about myself or maybe you've noticed that your inner critic is actually really loud.

Let's talk through how that might be showing up in your life right now.

Let's talk through some symptoms.

So number one, you've got negative self talk, you're constantly criticizing and berating yourself often with thoughts like I'm not good enough, I'm a failure.

I don't deserve this.

I'm never going to be good enough.

If you've got a constant negative self talk, that is such a symptom of a lack of self love.

Number two, you're a perfectionist, impossibly, high standards.

You feel like a failure if you don't meet them, perfectionists tend to have also a lot of stress and anxiety, total sign that you have a lack of self love.

Third one, self comparison comparing yourself to others feeling inadequate, jealous.

As a result, you feel that often total symptom of a lack of self love, difficulty accepting compliments, struggling to accept praise, compliments, downplay, downplaying your achievements.

Do you do that could be a total sign of a lack of self love, avoidance of self care.

You neglect your self-care, like exercise, rest, sleep, healthy, eating relaxation.

Because deep down you don't believe you deserve them.

Now, you might be saying to yourself, Jessica, it's not that I deserve them.

I don't deserve them.

Just I have no time.

We're all so busy, we're all really, really busy.

Many of you are juggling an awful lot of things.

Some of you more than others.

And I'm never ever going to argue with that.

You are so busy, but there has to come a time when we start to treat the real problem and the busyness and the time that's not going to go away, it's the prioritizing and the taking care of yourself that we need to start working on because the no time is the symptom of the real problem of the making time through a lack of love, through a lack of bothering to take care of yourself and find a way, avoidance of self care is a massive symptom that I see.

A lot of women do.

And the first thing that we say a lot of the time is that I have no time.

And when we accept that there's only a certain amount of time in the day and that we're all really busy and we somehow need to backtrack it a wee bit and figure out how we can actually make time, how we can make time and prioritize our time.

And actually start to boundary up our time and move out of this lack of self-respect and self love that we have for ourselves, seeking validation from others.

So if you seek approval and validation from others to feel good about yourself and your self worth depends on other people's opinions.

That's classic old me.

I only felt trim and healthy.

If somebody told me I looked trim and healthy, I only felt like a good person.

If somebody told me I was a good person, I'm the opposite of that.

Now I have my own gauge.

Nobody, my parents, nobody can upset me any more about myself because I know who I am and I seek validation from myself.

Nobody else.

I had to learn that the hard way.

Such a symptom of a lack of self love, a lack of self-worth.

If you are seeking validation from others about yourself, and you're figuring out how you are, what you're like as a person based on what people think, fear of rejection, afraid of rejection, of, afraid of abandonment.

Um that can lead to people pleasing behavior.

So if you're a big people pleaser and you think, why am I such a people pleaser?

You can totally trace it back to not loving yourself, not loving yourself.

You're afraid of confrontation, you're afraid of rejection, you're afraid somebody's going to walk away.

For example, that was like me in arguments with Joe.

I never wanted to argue to a point where we resolved it, which is crazy.

I used to silence myself and censor myself because I was afraid of confrontation.

That's what I used to say.

I was afraid of confrontation.

And actually, if I'm being honest, I was afraid of being abandoned.

I was afraid of being rejected by Joe.

Um, that feeling of, of rejection stopped me from arguing through an argument to resolution.

I would stop it because I was afraid of, of being abandoned.

So I would silence myself and censor myself and then, then all that would happen, then would be that I would um I would feel resentful towards them because I was bottling up my true feelings because I wanted to resolve but not really resolve an argument by just saying, look, it doesn't matter.

I don't want confrontation which is crazy and low self-confidence, lacking confidence in your abilities, doubting your decisions even in situations when you know, you have the skills and the knowledge.

But just that doubt that comes into your, that comes in um social withdrawal is another symptom.

If you take yourself out of activities and relationships, you stop meeting people that can totally become from a fear of judgment, feeling unworthy, not loving yourself enough self sabotage, engaging in destructive behaviors such as drinking too much alcohol as a way of coping with low self esteem.

Overeating can be another way of coping with low self esteem.

Another symptom is if you've got difficulty setting boundaries if you struggle to assert your needs, but you take care of everybody else's needs that can totally come from a lack of self worth.

And all that's going to do is make you feel like you're being taken advantage of.

You're going to feel resentful, annoyed, irritated and all those things that come with not setting boundaries for yourself.

Two more symptoms, one is guilt and shame.

If you're walking around feeling guilty and shame over past mistakes and shortcomings over maybe the person you used to be or an action you used to take, even when they're not, your faults can be such a symptom of a lack of self-love and depression and anxiety too has also been linked to low self Estee and a lack of self love, including persistent sadness, hopelessness, and excessive worry.

So if you've identified so far that ok, a lot of the things that you thought were your problems are actually symptoms of the real problem that your self worth is low, that your self love is low, then I encourage you to practice these about 13 things.


So number one, this is what you're going to do to start loving yourself more.

And the lovely thing about this is that you don't have to spend hours reading books and going on a big course.

You can start implementing it into your day right now.

Number one, you're going to start accepting yourself, you're going to practice starting to accept yourself every part of your body.

I'm not even going to say except your flaws and imperfections, just they're not flaws.

They're you, you're unique.

Start to accept yourself.

Look in the mirror butt naked and accept you for who you are.

If you don't accept yourself for who you are, you're letting somebody else win.

Whoever voice that is that negative inner critic, whether it's society's ideal of beauty or an old friend or a sibling or a mother or a father in your past, you're letting them win, you're letting them have the power, you're letting them have the power.

How empowering would it be for you to accept yourself as you are right now?

Your body, your mind, your hair, your face, your size, your shape, your personality, every single thing about yourself, you accept it, you accepted yourself, you practiced accepting yourself by simply practicing accepting yourself.

This is me.

This is me from the side.

This is me from the front.

Yes, this is me and you put your shoulders back and you start to lean into yourself rather than leaning away from yourself and running away from yourself.

Number two, challenge your negative self-talk.

Too many of us.

Let our self-talk.

Our inner critic go unchecked.

It just is a stream of consciousness all day long and we tune into it sometimes and we take it on board.

No, not anymore.

The first thing to do is we're going to start observing what our negative inner talk says we're going to become really aware of.

Our inner critic start to challenge those thoughts and come up with better thoughts.

That's it.

We just need to observe these thoughts, listen to what's being said, these thoughts that aren't facts, challenge them and say something else and simply do that every day until you win and your inner critic is silenced.

That's something that I do now the whole time I, I blow my own mind at the level that my inner critic will go to to tear myself down.

Even if I'm doing something fun, like starting off a board game or going for a dip in the sea.

I'm like, oh, well, of course, you're going to be taking time to get this.

Of course, you're not going to understand this board game typical you so much so that now I've tuned into it so much.

I'm like, oh my God, I can't believe you actually said that about yourself.

It's just crazy when you start tuning in to it and listening and actually how nasty you are to yourself.

Um A next action step is to this is number 1234 is to set realistic goals, set smaller goals.

Somebody said to me, this said this to me recently and um I said to them like, what do you, what do you want me to do?

Set smaller goals?

I, I won't be striving anymore if I do that.

Best thing I ever did was to set smaller goals.

Give myself a big pat on the back every day for everything that I've achieved.

It hasn't made me work any less.

It hasn't demotivated me.

It hasn't made me strive any less.

It's just made me feel better.

You know what setting big massive goals that stress you out can be such a sign of a lack of love.

Why not set smaller goals more in line with where you're at.

Smaller ones that you can go by the end of the week.

Yes, I've achieved that practice self care and prioritize self care.

So nurturing your physical and emotional well being, that's walking, working out, resting, sleeping, healthy, eating relaxation.

You have to, you have to prioritize your self-care.

You don't have much of a life if you don't, how long are you going to go for not spending time in yourself?

How long are you going to do that for until work dies down until the kids are older?

Until your older parents don't need to be looked after more?

But then what all of a sudden your whole sense of self is gone.

You don't even know who you are anymore anymore.

Your identity is like you don't even, you don't even know what your identity is.

So let's kind of future proof our future so that when we do get to a point where time where things will settle down and get quieter, which they will, you have a strong sense of self.

You love yourself, you've taken care of yourself now and life is for living now, start to prioritize your self care now and enjoy life now and figure out how to make it work.

Figure out how to find small little pockets of time throughout the day to make it work.

Have an icann attitude about this.

It's really important, practice mindfulness.

That's another action step.

So when you're out in your walks, looking around saying the leaves are lovely, the birds in the sky are lovely and that can really help you stop ruminating on things from your past.

Um Setting boundaries is really, really important.

I never used to have boundaries before my phone would ring.

I would answer it.

My whatsapp would go off.

I would feel obliged to message back straight away.

I didn't take care of myself.

I didn't love myself.

I had somebody else's voice calling me nasty things.

Well, it was the person who used to call me nasty things.

That's my inner critic and I was still giving them all the power, still giving them all the power by calling myself all those nasty names by still treating myself really badly by picking up the phone when it rang, by doing everything for everybody else.

When they asked me to boundaries are really important for you to be happy and for you to be happy and not resentful in your other relationships that you love.

Um It's not just about saying no, but it's about saying yes to yourself.

There's plenty written about practicing, saying no to things, but practice saying yes to yourself more often.

Like what hobbies can you do?

When can you do your workouts?

Like, don't just be an afterthought.

At the end of the day, I was an afterthought at the end of the day.

It's only through hard work that you can turn things around for yourself.

Like I'm not going to pretend it was easy to go from not loving myself to loving myself.

Like I had to change as a person like the people in my life that I love, including Joe.

Like we argued for a while while I was changing, while I, while I started to reinforce my enforce boundaries around my stuff and start to get really like uncensored and un silenced.

All the things that I did to myself.

We went through a period of time where we were arguing frequently, but then we came out the other end and our relationship is even better because when you, when you change, when you start to prioritize yourself and you start to maybe speak up a bit more, say how you feel you're always going to cause a little bit of conflict.

Not because the person doesn't love you so much and wants the absolute best for you.

But because you're changing and you're used to a certain dynamic.

So there is work to do to enforce boundaries and to get the family to rope in, maybe a little bit more or even in work to change work situations will always have a little bit of conflict maybe with your boss or your clients or whatever way your work is set up, but you will come out the other end better.

You have to go through that little stormy period first.

Um But you know what, when you're going through the stormy period, it's not really that unpleasant because you're feeling you get a bit of a buzz when you start to focus on yourself.

So like every time you, you stick up for yourself or you go through the whole conflict from the whole beginning to the end, or you say it's walk time by everybody, you get a bit of an empowered buzz and you know what all of your relationships will improve and life is just, there's another level waiting for you out there.

As Tony Robbins says, uh one of my mentors, I've went to him a lot of times.

Um There's always another level and there is always another level even when you think you're happy and there's no possible extra level of happiness when you work on yourself, there's always another level.

So forgiveness is another one forgiving yourself for past mistakes, letting go of guilt and shame.

There's only so many times you can look back and feel bad about something, maybe it was in a period in your life where you were drinking too much or you were bitter or angry or resentful.

You've said things or you've done things, it's time to let those things go.

It's time to forgive yourself and move on, seek support, reach out to friends, go to therapy, chat to somebody that you love.

Do affirmations.

We do affirmations in our thrived time every week.

Pos positive affirmations reinforces self love.

Actually, it was affirmations that uh the thrive times that I do in my coaching program were born out of.

We just, I just started doing thrive times um with my online program, six affirmation, one affirmation six times at the end of every workout through COVID.

And I noticed that I was starting to change because of it.

And I'd noticed that throughout the day, whatever affirmation I had been saying kind of popped up in my head because any other time somebody had told me that affirmations worked, I would do an affirmation for a day and go nah nothing.

So I never stuck with it but because I had to stick with it because I was doing it at the end of every workout with my members.

I noticed that it worked and the whole self love kind of thrive time journey was pretty much born from realizing that this stuff was true.

Um I don't know.

Does that, does that make sense to you guys?

Have you guys read in the newspapers?

Loads and articles like, oh affirmations are deadly and you're like, yeah.





Um But knowing and actually understanding it, it's just the difference is insane, isn't it?

Like it's, you're, you're the biggest problem.

I feel so many of us have.

We're always looking for the results too early and when we don't see them too early, we stop.

However, if only we knew that results were guaranteed if we just kept going and taking action, um practicing gratitude, really important gratitude has changed my life.

Um I say gratitude every day, three things.

I'm grateful for me and my family after dinner, we close our eyes and we each say three things and it just brings me right into a happy place.

Um Self compassion, talking to yourself kindly gently and the way to know whether you talk to yourself kindly or gently is just to simply observe how you speak to yourself.

Just watch out for it all day long.

Are you gentle?

Are you kind?

Do you coax yourself into situations or do you shout and roar at yourself and call yourself terrible things?

Maybe you don't call yourself anything bad.

Maybe you just, maybe you're just very hard on yourself.

Maybe you just say to yourself, oh, come on, what's wrong with you?

Why can't you get to work at?

Oh Why did you do?

That's not self compassion.

That's the opposite of self compassion and learning and growing and investing in personal development and doing the thrive times and working on yourself is one of the best things you can do for yourself because you're just acquiring new skills all the time.

And that can boost your self esteem and sense of accomplishment surrounding yourself with positivity, cutting anybody from your life or minimizing time with people that do not make you feel good.

The stormy time that I went through that I described was part of that was also cutting some people out of my life and putting boundaries on people that I can't cut out of my life that I find quite toxic and negative.

I put a little ring fence around them and uh stay away from them as much as I can.

Um And practicing self expression, expressing yourself through art, music or any form of self expression can just help you connect with your authentic self.

Last of all, not to mention celebrating your achievements and many milestones along the way.

Remember that self-love takes time, patience and effort and being kind and compassionate and gentle with yourself throughout this time is very important.

I want you now to have a little think about whether you love yourself or not and the problems you may be facing like missing workouts, overeating big portion sizes, struggling to make dinner at your last meal, struggling to make time for yourself setting boundaries up.

Ask yourself, can it all be traced back to a lack of love, self love if you're not taking care of yourself.

You're not loving yourself.

So you can't say yes, Jessica, I do love myself, but I don't take care of myself because you can't really love somebody and not take care of them.

At the same time, if you love somebody, you take care of them.

So if you love yourself, you'll be taking care of yourself.

If you maybe don't love yourself, there'll be signs there and those signs will show up in the sense that you're not taking care of yourself.

So if you're not taking care of yourself, by virtue of the fact that you're not taking care of yourself means you need to learn to love yourself again.

You need to learn to love your body.

You need to learn to love yourself inside and out back to front upside down, love yourself, seek validation from yourself.

Accept yourself as you are put boundaries up in your life, have hobbies, exercise, walk, drink water, eat healthy, eat healthy because you love yourself.

Not because you hate yourself.

I'm trying to eat less food and move more because you have a, a body that you want to go after.

Ask yourself, are you exercising and eating for health, for love or are you doing it from a place of hate?

And many of us find ourselves actually, if we're truthful that we're driven through hate when it comes to exercise and healthy, eating.

So food for thought today, I hope you enjoyed this episode.

You can go to Jessica Cook dot IE forward slash unleash and download my free guide five steps to unleashing your fitness and C AM.

Or you can join the waitlist to my coaching program.

Jessica Cook dot IE forward slash coaching.

Jessica Cook dot IE forward slash coaching.

Thank you for being here.

I hope you enjoyed this podcast episode and you must let me know by getting in touch.

Don't forget you can head on over to Jessica Cook dot IE where you'll find lots of free stuff to get you started on your journey.

  • 12/10/23 Jessica ….. ANOTHER GOLDEN NUGGET!!!! I can relate to every word! Will definately listen again! Thank you. Xx

  • 13/10/23 #replay…. half way through this Jessica and have to leave it, but will definately follow through on it again. #brilliant! Xx thank you xx

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    About the author 

    Jessica Cooke

    I love drinking coffee, and my favourite thing in life (apart from my family) is to help women to get fit and break free from unhealthy habits holding them back. (oh, and also I love playing with my two Miniature Schnauzers, Buster and Ozzy)

    I’ve now supported over 6,779 women over 14 years in my Thrive Coaching Program get fit and break free from unhealthy habits!