“Contentment in our hearts is rooted in emotional independence, in giving love and approval rather than trying to get them. We need to realize that all dukkha depends on craving and that we must therefore let go of desires. That is the path and the teaching. …Harmony is togetherness with others but also togetherness within oneself. Becoming a whole person brings harmony. The word “holy” is rooted in the word “whole.” We need not be holy, just whole and complete in ourselves. It’s the most difficult and the most worthwhile work we can do. When we know that there is nothing lacking in ourselves, nothing that we have to find somewhere outside, contentment and peace begin to fill our hearts.” Ayya Khema,
Be an Island – The Buddhist Practice of Inner Peace
Stop waiting for people to approve of you. It’s a waste of time. If you don’t approve of yourself, having other people’s approval will make you question their judgment. The thought is, “If they knew me, they wouldn’t like me or approve of me.”
Emotional independence is simply another form of independence. It’s tough to be emotionally independent while waiting for someone else to pay your rent. To be emotionally independent requires that you take responsibility for every other area of your life as well. It means keeping your desires in check, taking care of where you live, having skills that employers want (so you aren’t dependent on the financial security of the place you work at or your boss’s temperament), and treating everyone (including yourself) well.
Another related concept to holiness (coming from wholeness) is that of integrity. Integrity means wholeness. The numerical concept of “integer” means whole number. For example, 3.25 is not an integer, but 7 is. Integrity is matching your stated values with your actions, being trustworthy, and that type of thing. You get the idea.