My name is Jordan Cook, but I'm a sucker for people who call me Jord. I've lived in Virginia, Oklahoma, and Missouri, and now reside in Fayetteville, NC. You know, where they bang for the money (Cole World). Currently, I work as a restaurant server and a client service coordinator at a veterinary practice. On the side you'll catch me in my haven behind my 1930s ROYAL, hand-typing anything from poetry, to love letters, to follow ups for job applications. Snail mail til the death of me.
What is your definition of self love?
Oftentimes we accept the love we think we deserve, and yes that comes from one of my favorite books, The Perks of Being a Wallflower. But what I'm finding as a Christ-believer, is that self love is accepting that we were made worthy of the greatest of all loves. How can I not be willing to learn to love myself after knowing that? It is human nature to be imperfect. Any love we are given from another will be far from perfect, but we cannot become defined by that shortcoming. We are responsible for harboring love for ourselves because we know us better than any person on this Earth.
Why is self love so important?
Self love is important because as we all know, there are times where we don't feel loved by those who are supposed to love us. Whether it be a relationship ending or a heart-searing fight with a loved one, in these times self love can be such a healing security.
What are some factors, in your opinion, that can deter someone from loving themselves?
Hands down the biggest deterrent to self love is the reactions, or love we get from others. For me, I aimed to please people. Pleasing people became how I felt loved. I equated love to need. If I could make people need me then I could be important enough to love myself. Thing is, there almost always came a time where I was no longer needed, and that's when I'd feel spiral into disappointment and self hatred.
When did you realize that you needed to start loving on yourself more?
I realized I needed to love myself more about two years ago after my most serious relationship ended. This was also the first time I had lived on my own. Without the distraction of another person I had no one to face but myself. Self love is hard work, and it takes a hell of a lot of self reflection on its journey. But also compassion in that journey. You have to seek out your deterrents and decide they will no longer be a crutch for you. That shame will not be a place you stay for long.
Without the distraction of another person I had no one to face but myself.
What is your self care tradition?
Pretty much my best days start off with ones where I'm reading positive literature or from my bible while listening to upbeat or worship music. I know that not everyone is a believer, but my relationship with God has been the hugest part of my self love. I try to keep from engaging in harmful habits, and replacing them with others like yoga or writing. I work a lot, but I make sure to give myself the rest I need when I do have down time and also to make time for the things I enjoy. When you develop self love you'll be surprised how much more intentional you are with your love for others and how quick you are to give love away without fear or regret.
What is your advice for someone who is having trouble with their self-esteem?
To anyone having trouble with self-esteem. Spending time with yourself is an esteem booster! You will catch me going to see a movie by myself or taking myself out to eat often. Gosh, I even take road trips by myself. But, go at your own pace and of course be safe. If you will take the time to court yourself, you will fall in love with yourself.