Archive of ‘Teens Self-Esteem’ category

Madly in Love with Me Q and A

I often like to share books that i have been sent or have requested that are in line with my values and beliefs. Madly in Love with me by Christine Arylo is one of them! You can read an excerpt of the book’s introduction here.



Christine Arylo

Here’s the book trailer for you to view!

Madly in Love with Me is full of wonderful exercises that you can do to increase your self-love.  It’s also full of whimsical illustrations and lots of hearts to appeal to young and old alike.  This book would make a great gift for yourself or even for a teen who could use a bit more self-love in her life!

Without further ado here is a Q and A with Christine:

Isn’t loving yourself selfish or narcissistic?

Self-love is so misunderstood. If you looked self-love up in the dictionary, yes, it is defined as conceit, vanity and narcissism but whoever came up that definition has it all wrong. People who do suffer from narcissism or excess vanity actually lack love for themselves. Their extreme self-centeredness and unawareness of their impact on others is really a cover for a deep sense of inferiority, a fear of connection and a low self-worth. Thankfully, narcissism isn’t contagious and most people don’t need to worry about being too selfish. If anything, they need to give to themselves more.

Loving yourself is the same as loving another person, the energy of love is just pointed in a different direction. Think of it this way, you’d never say loving your parents or friends was selfish, and neither is giving love to yourself. Imagine giving love to someone in your life that you deeply care about. Notice how good it feels to give love to that person – in all kinds of ways including affection, caring, acknowledgement, honor, compassion, etc. Now imagine taking that same energy and directing the love at yourself – giving yourself affection, care, acknowledgement, honor, compassion, etc. Same energy. Love is never selfish.

What is self-love? What does it really mean to love yourself?

Some day I will petition the dictionary people to change the definition for self-love, but for now to set the record straight, here’s a truthful definition for self-love: Self-love is the unconditional love and respect you have for yourself that is so deep, so solid, so unwavering that you choose only situations and relationships – including the one you have with yourself – that reflect that same unconditional love and respect.

In our culture, there are a lot of words other than self-love that people are much more comfortable using – self-esteem, self-awareness, self-care, self-worth, self-compassion – words that many people mistakenly believe are the same as self-love. While all the ideas expressed by these words are components of self-love, none alone is a synonym for self-love. Love is a specific, un-paralleled, and all-powerful vibration, and none of these aspects of self-love has that power on their own – but put them together and WOW! You’ve got a tree of self-love!

Okay, so say I do believe that loving myself is a good idea, how do I actually do it?

Once a person gets that loving themselves is a good idea, and they get past all that fear around it being selfish or vain, they always ask, “How do I love myself?” Self-love can feel so vast and esoteric and it can get thrown around casually, “Oh, sure I love myself,” when if you were to look at that person’s life you would see the areas where they do choose love and where they don’t act lovingly towards themselves. Loving yourself isn’t black and white, as in either you are a person who does or doesn’t. It isn’t some nirvana state you master and achieve and then can just forget about. Loving yourself is a choice you make, or don’t, in every moment of every day for the rest of your life.

The first step is to become aware of the ways in which you are a rock star at being a best friend to yourself and the ways that you have a hard time making choices and taking actions that align with love. To make this accessible and tangible for people, I teach the 10 Branches of Self-Love and guide people how to identify where they are weak so they can GROW their self-love in this place, and also how to identify where they are strong, so they can make KEEP the love flowing, and also make sure they don’t over-rely on any one branch, which will throw you out of balance.

You say that it’s possible to have too much self-esteem. What do you mean?

Self-esteem is the strong belief in and regard for yourself. It is a strong confidence in your ability to do and be anything. And while we definitely want to foster self-esteem (it wasn’t that long ago that self-esteem wasn’t a common culturally acceptable ideal), self-esteem on it’s own is not enough – it’s only 1/10th of the self-love equation.

Without self-compassion, you can have tons of self-esteem, but you will be extremely hard on yourself. We are creating a culture of hardened high achievers failing to use the power of the tools of the heart – equating confidence to strength and compassion to weakness, which just isn’t true. Today, women and children are extremely emotionally hard on themselves, driven by the unrealistic expectations to do, be and have it all. And with little training and understanding of self-compassion, they silently beat themselves up, all the while appearing like they have it all together to the outside world.

You need all 10 branches of self-love – self awareness & honesty, self-acceptance, self-care, self-compassion & forgiveness, self-trust, self-esteem, self-empowerment, self-respect & self-honor, self-pleasure, and self-expression cared for, nurtured and fully blooming.

How do you cultivate a strong and independent sense of self-worth?

The first stage of cultivating a really strong and independent self-worth is making sure that all 10 of your self-love branches are in a healthy state. They may not all be fully blooming, but they are headed in the right direction, which means that you need to be aware of how your life is supporting these aspects of yourself – or not – each being essential to your happiness and health.

So as not to activate the over-achiever gene or send anyone into overwhelm, I recommend choosing one branch of self-love to focus on for a given time frame, and creating a 40-day self-love practice around it. 40-days is the minimum amount of time – as the yogi’s, brain scientists, and metaphysicians agree that is the amount of time it takes to identify and release a self-sabotaging habit. And then, if you want to replace that with a new self-loving habit, 120 days is even better.

As you heal and grow the branches of your tree, the entire tree as well as the roots will flourish. Increasing your self-compassion will have a positive affect on your self-care and ability to value what is really important to you. Growing your self-empowerment will increase your self-expression, you will feel more seen and as a result more valued or who you truly are.

The second stage is all about Knowing Your Worth. This doesn’t happen overnight – coming back to your true self-worth is a profound spiritual journey but there are some powerful and accessible places to start including:

· Removing the toxins of judgment and unrealistic expectations – they gotta go!

· Giving up Comparison and Embracing your unique divine imprint – and how valuable that is.

· Embracing the truth of who you are, why you are here and how valuable that really is

· Redefining success and happiness on your terms

· Taking bold and courageous acts to get your life into alignment with your heart and soul

· Believing the truth you were born knowing – you are enough, just as you are. There is only one you, and that too is enough.

Why do so many smart women end up in bad relationships? And how can women stop this pattern, or keep their daughters or friends from making those mistakes?

Unfortunately, smart women of all ages end up in bad relationships a lot because they have low self-respect and self-honor and because they don’t know how to give love to themselves. Not knowing how to give love to themselves, they’d rather be with anyone than be alone, they’d rather avoid or plug up their emotional wounds with an unhealthy relationship than have to feel to heal.

Additionally, without a strong self-respect and self-honor, a woman will put herself into situations that are verbally, emotionally even physically abusive. She will settle for less than what her heart and soul desires, honoring another’s desires over her own, and as a result selling out her own happiness to keep the love of another.

The best cure for ourselves and for our daughters and friends is to teach them at least these two things: 1. Respect is not optional in relationships. It’s mandatory. Require it, without apology. 2. “You are sacred. Your body, your spirit, your heart, your life are like a sacred temple. Adore them. Honor them. And protect them without apology.” And then support her to know, feel and embody respect and sacredness. And then do the same for yourself – reclaim your sacredness.

When a person sees themselves as sacred, they gain the power to demand that sacredness be honored, by everyone, including themselves. There is something magical and deeply spiritual about treating yourself as sacred and requiring that same energy in all of your romantic relationships.

With all the information out there about taking care of yourself and being healthy why do women especially have such a hard time giving themselves permission to actually do the things they know they should do to take care of themselves?

Most women know what they need to do to take good care of – replenish, nourish, nurture – themselves, they just literally cannot give themselves permission to do so. It’s not the information they’re missing, it’s the permission to do what a best friend would do in an instant, tell us “Honey, take a break, take care of yourself, the rest will wait. I insist!”

The reason most of have such a hard time following through on what we know we need, is because even though we want it, we don’t value it. We value giving over receiving. Doing over being. Why? Because we’ve been reading from the wrong handbooks — the Self Sacrifice Handbook and the Self Esteem Handbook instead of the Self-Love Handbook. The former ascribes that we must give, and give and give to others, and then give some more, until there is nothing left. Only when we have given all we have, have we given enough. This Self-Sacrifice Handbook works from the mantra “It’s better to give than receive” rather than “It’s better to give and receive.” Hence why we have little problem giving care, nourishment, nurturing to others, but the thought of giving this love to ourselves comes with a big guilt sandwich. Driven by the belief that it’s good and honorable to give to others, and selfish to give to ourselves, it’s no wonder it’s so hard to give ourselves the care we need.

The Self-Esteem Handbook makes matters worse by equating our value with how much we do, the more we do the better and more valuable we are. There is no chapter in this handbook about valuing ourselves based on “being,” no lessons on relaxing or how to have more impact by doing less. So when we find ourselves not doing, we start questioning our value and worth. Our value has become equated to how much we can get done in a day or a week or achieve in a lifetime legacy. So if we aren’t actively pursuing something or being busy, we feel bad, like we should be doing something.

Next time you find yourself having trouble giving yourself permission to take care of yourself, take a b.f.f. daring act of love and ask and answer this question, ‘What do you need to take care of yourself today?” And then make sure that you receive it – no matter what!

Is it true that you actually got the day before Valentines Day – February 13th – officially dedicated to be the international day of self-love? What’s this all about?

With SO much attention given to Feb 14th and Valentines Day, and frankly a day that currently causes more suffering than happiness, I knew we needed the day before to be a day when people could take their love power back – to get that they are loved even without a romantic partner – and a day when people could fill themselves up first with love so they had extra to give.

On Feb 13th, I invite people to choose one branch of self-love and make a promise to themselves that will help them grow that branch all year long. These promises give people an anchor point to come back to during their day to day life, to choose love. For example, if your branch is self-pleasure, your promise might be “I choose to have fun and do what brings me joy no matter how much work there is to do.” Or if your branch is self-care your promise could be “I promise to ask myself what I need and then take action to give that care to myself.”

Every February, our team, Team Love goes on the road and holds self-love-a-poolza’s, and our Love Ambassadors around the world throw self-love parties of their own. Last year 500 people threw parties in 31 countries and 41 states. Which makes for a lot of people taking and keeping the promise to love themselves all year long.

What advice would you give to a mother raising her child, to teach them how to love themselves?

Love yourself, she will watch you and follow your actions. Tell her how sacred she is. Encourage her to follow her heart. Teach her to source love from within. Talk to her about comparison and why it’s crazy – there is no on else like her and that’s a good thing! Show her where her value comes from by valuing being as much as you do doing. Listen to her, and teach her to trust her inner wisdom, even over your own opinions. See her, really see her for who she is, not a reflection of you, but a unique imprint of divine love. Empower her to follow her heart, even when it makes no sense to anyone else. Make her feel loved, no matter what.

Art Journal Jam!

Finally – i created a poster for the Art Journal Jam happening at the Good Day Sunshine Cafe!artjournaljam_poster1

It’s funny but yesterday i googled “Art Journal Jam ideas” to know what to put in this poster and the first thing that came up was yesterday’s post.  I didn’t get much help from Google. The funny thing is i didn’t invent the term “Art Journal Jam” – i first heard it when i attended Teesha’s Art Journal Fest a couple of years ago.

I thought hosting a Journal Jam was a great way to meet other likeminded spirits and just JAM/create art!  I could have posted a Meetup event but i am hoping to attract some teens as well as women to the gathering.  I wouldn’t think that Teens would be likely to go to a Meetup – i could be wrong however Smile.

I often hear people complaining that their community doesn’t host creative gatherings.  So I tell them – if it doesn’t exist then create it yourself!  Post notices in cafe’s, blog about it, create Meetups, send a notice to your local paper, drop off flyers in your neighbourhood, attend women’s networking events and hand out flyers. There are many ways to find YOUR PEOPLE! 

The folks at Good Day Sunshine Cafe are very supportive of the arts and Creative folks – they even host Open Mic nights which apparently are a big hit.  Fiind out if your community has a cafe that is open to new ideas and approach them with your creative ideas.

I hope you all have a lovely weekend.  I’m spending some time with my little grandson Cillian today so that should be fun!

Love, Violette xo

May Contest Giveaway


It’s about time i had another contest don’t you think? So for the May Contest Giveaway I am offering up 4 “thank you Top hat girl” greeting cards as well as the pendant Cupcake Girl


Isn’t she sweet? – she can be a little talisman that you were daily to remind yourself to follow your bliss!


On the back of the pendant it says “Follow your bliss” – just in case you forget!

To enter to win these goodies simply leave me a message in the comment section letting me know what you’d like to see in my next youtube video!  Thank you and good luck!  Contest ends at midnight on Wednesday May 23rd (PST).

“Got Teens?” Workshop

My friend and co-facilitator for the Teens Art Journaling Workshops – Susi Vasseur will be hosting a workshop series called “Got Teens” – it’s all about Navigating the Teen Years.

Join other like-minded proactive parents to discover:
• New ways to connect with your teen
• How to feel empowered as you elevate your parenting skills
• How to enjoy those important formative years
• The benefits of sharing ideas and solutions with others

It starts May 28th – if you live in the Lower Mainland you might like to attend Susi’s workshop! Click on the above link to find out more and sign up.


Where’s Violette?

On May 26th at 2 pm I’ll be demonstrating Art Journaling at Opus Art Supplies in Langley It’s free – you’ll see me lettering, creating colourful backgrounds, collaging as well as incorporating photos onto the journaling pages.

On June 1 and 2nd I will have a booth at the B.C. Home School Convention at the TRADEX in Abbotsford, B.C. I’ll be selling my Teens Dream Journal DVD as well as some pendants, cards and bookmarks.  I’ll be chatting about art journaling as well!  Come out and see me if you can. There will be lots of booths there as well as some awesome speakers.  I’d love to meet you.


Mother’s Day Dream Journal fun!


Yesterday i spoke about revamping the Magic Cottage – giving everything a fresh coat of paint.  Well this morning I’m painting the checkerboard border on the painted rug.  As you can see i tried to cheat by not taping off the inside edge or even the outside edge of the row I’m working on.  I’ll have to tape it off as it’s REALLY SLOW GOING this way. Taping all the sides off will help me to paint faster Smile.

I was feeling rather guilty this week as much of the week is being taken up with “family stuff” rather than my art business but I’m pretty happy about it.  Today my Mom is coming over and I’ll be showing her how to make her own Dream Journal Book with her photos.  Spending the afternoon with my Mom is my Mother’s Day gift to her – I mean really – the gift of time is more important than an actual item don’t you think? There is a possibility that a reporter might be by to do a Mother’s Day story today so that should be fun!

Tomorrow I’m visiting my daughter-in-law and grandson Sam.  My daughter-in-law is pregnant and is due in a week or two! How exciting! On Thursday I’ll be babysitting my other little grandson Cillian (who is 3 months old).  On Friday I have a luncheon for my sister’s birthday and my good friend Barb’s birthday.  We are preparing the yard and buying bedding plants in preparation for a family gathering on Sunday here – Mother’s Day (there are 6 Mothers i believe) and my sister’s birthday. So it’s a busy time indeed!

I want to thank my friend Suzana for posting all about the Teen’s Dream Journal on her blog.  What a lovely blogpost – thank you Suzana!  If you want to grab a copy of the Teen’s Dream Journal go here.

See you tomorrow!


Art Journaling for Mastermind groups


I’m teaching art journaling tonight to a group of ladies belonging to a Mastermind group.  It should be fun!  What a wonderful way to bond with your group and in the meantime create a meaningful, colourful journal of where you are headed in your life!  Creating a book that has been filled with your intentions in a graphic way has power.  It’s like creating a goals list, committing it to paper and then if you choose, reviewing it every day (best if you do it first thing in the morning) to help manifest your dreams.  When you do this you are activating the RAS – the reticular activating system in your brain makes you aware of information that is important to you.  Check out this quick video with Lou Tice as he explains the RAS

If you write down and illustrate your goals either by drawing, painting or collaging them and if you review them on a daily basis your RAS will notice opportunities that arise in the world which can help you manifest your dreams.  It’s sort of like seeing Volkswagens everywhere once you announce you want to buy a Volkswagen Smile.  They were always there before but you simply never noticed them.

Not your Mother’s book club

Tomorrow night from 6 to 8 pm I’ll be at Black Bond Books in Semiahmoo Mall, White Rock, B.C. creating bookmarks with tweens and teens and teens-at-heart!  There will be prizes and snacks and best of all it’s free!  You can share your favourite books and get new recommendations from knowledgeable staff!  I’ll have my teen’s dream journals and some of my other journal pages available for the teens to look though. I hope to see you there!

The happiness continues!

Congratulations to Marney Makridakis – her book Creating Time became a #1 Bestseller yesterday afternoon in both Canada and the US!  Yay!  Callie Carling (Marney’s Partner Relations Coordinator) has creating a fun little video to celebrate the book becoming a bestseller!.

See you all tomorrow!


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