So many of us struggle with taking care of and accepting ourselves fully. In this practice we rebel against societal whispers telling us we’re not good enough, lovable enough, or desirable enough. Because—good news—you don’t need anything external to yourself to make you more lovable. According to the Buddhist tradition (where the loving-kindness practices stem from) you are perfect and inherently lovable just as you are. You simply need to discover this – which is where this particular meditation comes in. In my tradition, that of Shambhala Buddhism, it is believed we are Buddha. We are awake. We are good. That is the core of who we are. Through working with a technique like this one, we can discover the love we need inside ourselves and connect more fully with our true state.

The Shambhala teacher Pema Chodron once wrote, “I can’t overestimate the importance of accepting ourselves exactly as we are right now, not as we wish we were or think we ought to be.” If those words resonate with you, I recommend you try this practice.

Related: What It Means to Take Refuge in Buddhism