11/20/2013 05:51 pm ET Updated Jan 25, 2014

How to Attract Love Into Your Life This Holiday and Beyond

I was taking the PATH train from Jersey into Manhattan when a studious-looking young blonde entered at the Newport stop and sat down on my right. She wore a floating royal purple scarf decorated with many jiggling tassels about her swan-like neck. The animated tassels made me feel joyful and I told her that I thought her scarf was really cute.

"Oh, this thing? Thanks... I just got it for five bucks somewhere," she replied.

I smiled, thinking to myself that, well, it's still a cute scarf, but said nothing. Interestingly, her response to my compliment is something that I hear quite often from women in particular: Someone pays a genuine compliment and then they respond in a manner that knocks the wind out of it. Or punches the compliment in the face. It's as if they refuse to accept someone's perception that they look good, are wonderful, or did a good job.

If we cannot accept a compliment gracefully, how can we accept ourselves? There is no need to qualify ourselves when receiving a compliment. Doing so has an effect on how we accept ourselves and our receptivity towards love, attention, and recognition. Lack of self-acceptance drives us away from the true source of lasting happiness, making us less satisfied of ourselves, our careers, and our lives.

If you want more love, attention, and joy in your life, accept it when it comes your way.

Begin with saying a "thank you" when someone sends you some positivity, rather than shunning from it. This may feel weird at first, but simply accept the compliment without qualifying it. Really tune into how it feels to be thankful and in receiving mode.

Or, you can send yourself a loving thought. I do this every morning by first saying to myself:

May you be happy, healthy, and live with ease.

I then think of a dear friend I know and then say this to them in my heart. I do the same thing for a neutral person and then a difficult person.

Once this practice of celebration and gratitude becomes a habit, you project an infectious joy for living that will attract the world towards you. You will begin to believe that you are worthy of love bit by bit until it becomes natural. When you finally own it, that's when the magical thing happens: love in all its forms (and not just the romantic kind) just seems to be attracted to you and life will be brimming with it. This will be true love because you have cultivated it from the inside out. And that will be something to be thankful for.

May you be happy, healthy, and live with ease.

Catherine Chen, Ph.D., is a speaker and Health Coach who believes that you are important, no matter what you achieve. She works with high-octane women to have more love and balance in their life while being great on the job. If you enjoyed this article, sign up for tips every other week on finding balance at