My soul is my friend who consoles me in misery and distress of life. He who does not befriend his soul is an enemy of humanity, and he who does not find human guidance within himself will perish desperately. Life emerges from within, and derives not from environs. From The Treasured Writings of Kahlil Gibran.
Here I would say that Kahlil captured the essence of what it is to love oneself. For if we are unable individually to love self first, then it is futile that we can love anyone or thing outside of self.