August 25, 2019

Author Heather Reinhardt Champions Self-Love in Her Debut Book 

Heather Reinhardt. Photo by Megan Wintory
Heather Reinhardt is on a mission to help you #liveyourbestlife through her debut book Go Love Yourself and her self-love product line Amour de Soi. Reinhardt’s book teaches us the tools necessary to cultivate self-love through humorous anecdotes and uplifting step-by-step guidance to become the self-love aficionado she describes herself to be.
With her light-hearted and inspiring tone, Reinhardt shares how she paved the path to building self-love, self-respect, and self-worth.
What makes Reinhardt’s message incredibly unique is her ability to dive deep into how self-love, which she explains is a form of soul development, can especially support people who are caught up in the face of struggles.
As the key ingredient needed to living your BEST LIFE, self-love is unfortunately missing in today’s society as very few of us are taught how and why it is crucial to love ourselves. But, Reinhardt is here for the rescue by offering the blueprint needed to live the epic life you deserve.
I interviewed Reinhardt to learn more about the journey through attaining self-love. She also offers beneficial advice to aspiring creatives in the interview below.
JJ:  What compelled you to write about self-love? 
Heather Reinhardt: After going through my own personal self-love journey, it became so blatantly obvious to me that more people needed self-love to not only live better lives, but to live the lives they were meant to live. I took it on as a responsibility to share with the world what I had learned, in hopes that by sharing my story and pieces of my journey that it would inspire others to dive deep into the way they live their lives.
JJ: In your book Go Love Yourself you mention everyone defines self-love differently. How do you personally define self-love? 
HR: My definition of self-love is a righteous knowing of one’s identity. When you know yourself down to your core, you understand what works for you and what doesn’t work for you. When you love yourself, you’re able to make choices that serve you and move you forward on your path.
JJ: What are the biggest takeaways you would like people to gain from your book?
HR: The biggest takeaway would be to understand that your thoughts run your entire life. If you think negatively, you’ll have more negative experiences. If you think positively, you’ll have more positive experiences. It takes time to undo some of the negative ways of thinking we might have engrained in us from childhood or previous unpleasant experiences; however, it can be done. The trick to overcoming a negative thought is to counteract it with a positive affirmation.
JJ: Why do you think self-love is lacking in today’s society? 
HR: No one really teaches us self-love when we’re young (unless you have happened to have very self-aware parents/guardians). Also, no one really just wakes up one day and decides to love themselves. The choice is usually made right after a significant moment that typically involves an, “I can’t do life like this anymore” epiphany. Mindfulness, meditation, and yoga are already popping up in the mainstream. Self-love isn’t too far behind. Imagine a generation of new parents teaching their children these concepts… our world has the potential to be a very different place in the next few decades if more people begin to love themselves. The world can be an overwhelming place. Everywhere you look, there’s something that needs to be fixed. I believe if we each started with healing ourselves and coming into our own versions of self-love, we’d be able to more efficiently conquer other issues. As they say, heal yourself and you heal the world.
JJ: What are the top 3 ways in which your book Go Love Yourself helps in guiding people towards cultivating self-love?
HR:
  1. Go Love Yourself is a combination of my personal stories and the tips and tools I used during my self-love journey. I share what worked for me as a blueprint, in hopes others will find inspiration to create their own blueprint. We can learn so much from the power of storytelling. As a writer, I’m empowered talking about my story. As a reader and consumer of other books and content, I find inspiration in knowing other’s stories. At the end of the day, we have much more in common with each other than we do differences.
  2. I dig down deep in what taking responsibility for one’s life actually looks like (it can often times be painful and embarrassing to cop to, which is why so many people never do it). Once you understand and own all of your previous choices, you can then move forward making better choices, building a better life for yourself.
  3. I write about how we’re all sacred, yet most of us are not acting like it. I’m a pretty spiritual person—I believe we’re more than just humans. We’re souls who are here to learn some hard lessons while also having beautiful and loving experiences throughout our lives. My hope is to see people treating themselves better, treating themselves as something sacred.
JJ: In your book you mention that “Success should never be judged by the final outcome. It should instead be acknowledged in all of the active steps taken toward your goal.” This is a HUGE concept that is missing in defining success in our society. What are effective ways you think we can alter the way our minds view success? 
HR: It takes extreme self-awareness to not only take notice of your daily accomplishments, but also not beat yourself up mentally if you’re not moving as fast as you’d like to. Somedays, I’m totally pumped that XY&Z got done while other days I’m bummed because I only got one thing done. I have to remind myself that the one thing from my to-do list that I did accomplish still moves me forward regardless. Any big goal takes many steps to accomplish and those steps have to be taken one at a time, or else we’d trip and fall. I’ve also found it effective to enlist a friend/mentor to talk about your projects with, as they can see things you might be overlooking and gently (and often) remind you that you’re doing just fine as long as you’re moving forward, regardless of speed.
JJ: As Albert Einstein once said: “Failure is success in progress.”  What have been some of your failures, and how has it helped propel you towards success?
HR: Some of my biggest failure moments have involved negative self-talk. I have a history of being very hard on myself. It’s lightened up over the last few years coming into my deep sense of self and cultivating my own version of self-love. Yet I can recall moments where I was being hard on myself and while in that place, I wouldn’t make strong choices to move forward, rather I’d sit and mull in the negative, which cost me time. I could have spent that time moving forward, getting my work out into the world sooner. This lesson taught me self-compassion. I’m no longer in a place of beating myself up about wasting time and previously having negative thoughts because I’ve cultivated self-compassion (which I believe is needed to be successful at anything).
JJ: You mention in your book how self-love supports people in their struggle. Explain this concept. 
We all struggle with something from time to time. Many of our struggles are often an inner battle. When I find myself in some sort of struggle, my self-love journey taught me to dive deep to find the root of what is actually bothering me. My self-love journey gave me all sorts of different tools to use when I need to dig deeper. Before I took my self-love journey, the struggles would go on and on because I didn’t have the tools to analyze them. When you start a self-love journey, you create a toolbox you can then use when you’re struggling to dig deeper to understand why, and then fix whatever needs to be mended so you can move forward in your life in peace.
JJ: You also mention in your book that “The gold lies in the struggle,” explain why and how we can move towards a space of accepting and embracing this truth? 
HR: I truly believe that there are lessons to be learned in each struggle. Life doesn’t give anyone unfair or unnecessary struggles; we are all given our own specific personal struggles as that is what we each have to learn and grow from. When I’m going through something difficult, I try to remember that it’s happening not to me, but rather for me. I’ve accepted that I’m not just going through it; I’m growing through it.
JJ: Tell us about your self-love brand Amour de Soi for those who may not know.
HR: Amour de Soi (French for self-love) is my lifestyle brand which currently encompasses not only my book, Go Love Yourself, but also a self-love jewelry line—to wear as a reminder to embody your Amour de Soi—and also an Affirmation Candle line. I created Affirmation Candles to have a physical self-love tool, taking on the strategy of overcoming a negative thought by counteracting it with a positive affirmation. Lighting a candle and saying your affirmation aloud means there’s an action associated with the ritual. I find that you have to not only have positive thoughts but also a positive action to really create change in your life. Light an Affirmation Candle and light up your life. One of my favorite things about the candles (besides their amazing aromas!) is that they’re hand poured at Light for Life Cause, where they hire adults with disabilities. When you purchase an Amour de Soi Affirmation Candle, you not only empower yourself, you also empower the people who made them.
JJ: Can you share the recent Teshuva experience you discuss in your book and how it tied into your self-love journey? 
HR: A few Fall’s ago, in the middle of a Teshuva, I was in the process of submitting my manuscript to agents and publishers. I was getting a lot of no’s (as it turns out, many of them didn’t actually read my work, and a few have reached out since I published noting their regret of passing). I was really hard on myself during this time period. I questioned whether I should change things so that I would better fit their mold. Simultaneously, I was internally processing my Teshuva experience and looking for any wrongs I might have done so that I could right them. Something my self-love journey taught me was to cop up to any mistakes I may have made at the time I realized I had made them, rather than letting them fester. I didn’t have anyone to apologize to. Until I realized that I needed to apologize to myself for being so incredibly hard on myself. I made the strong choice to keep my work as it was, the way I intended it to be created. I didn’t need to fit into someone else’s mold. That’s not what self-love is.

 

JJ: What’s the biggest piece of advice you’d give someone who is interested in writing a book and building a brand? 
HR: Take it step by step. For writing, what worked for me was committing to writing two paragraphs a day, no matter what. Ninety percent of the time, those two paragraphs turned into a few pages. On the days they didn’t, I still had forward progress in the form of those two paragraphs. For building a brand, learn about every facet of what you’re building. If you don’t understand something, ask qualified people questions until you’re blue in the face. Sit down with an accountant to understand the financial aspect of building a business (and get this stuff in order before you even make a dollar). Sit down with a lawyer to understand the agreements and trademarks. Learn the backend of your website so you can fix things at a moment’s notice. Knowledge is power and if you don’t have a specific [piece of ] knowledge on something, make sure you surround yourself with team members (that you trust) who do.
JJ: Let’s talk a bit about the business side of your book and brand to help provide insight and inspiration to newbie creatives. How did you work on attracting potential readers and customers for your book and brand? 
HR: I’ve been writing and contributing to online platforms for the last five years, which helped me gain an audience. I’ve also attended a number of women’s events over the last two years and met like-minded individuals—many have become dear friends, helping me spread the word about the book and brand. I believe the power of networking and the ability to cultivate relationships are big components when starting a business. I’ve never been one to shy away from saying hello to a stranger. Besides, all of our friends were once strangers before we got to know them. Plus, you just never know who you’re going to meet!
JJ: What are 3 marketing tips you’d give to someone who is interested in becoming an entrepreneur in the creative space? 
HR:
  1. Get to know who’s already out there doing similar things. Learn from them, see what’s worked and what hasn’t. They’re not your competition; they’re your teachers.
  2. Do as much as you can on your own so that you understand the nuts and bolts of your business, but also acknowledge when it’s time to bring on a marketing expert, publicist, and/or manager to help expand your business.
  3. Test your ideas out on friends you trust to see their response to your product/brand. A solid friend will tell you when something isn’t quite right and needs to be tweaked.
JJ: We would like to leave readers with a little nugget of inspiration. What has been your greatest inspiration? Is there a particular quote, life motto or mentor you look up to that has given you unforgettable advice that you’d like to share? 

HR: My life motto is “How you do one thing is how you do everything.” Living by this, I aim to live a life of integrity on all levels every day. If I’m going to live an epic life, then everything I do has to be its own version of epic, even the mundane things. Another nugget that I truly believe is that when you love yourself, you stop judging yourself. When you stop judging yourself, you stop judging others. If we stopped judging ourselves, and therefore others, self-love becomes the cure for much of our society’s issues. Which is why everyone should go love themselves.


Berenice Famli is the CEO and founder of the Jewish emoji app Shalomoji and a Los Angeles based writer who covers lifestyle, health, and entrepreneurship.