Self-love and self-respect are essential to each and every person’s survival in this day and age. With the constant updates and changes in social media trends and the many-body images that are grounded in our minds. It can be hard to continue to love yourself at all times of the day.
“Love yourself first, because that’s who you’ll be spending the rest of your life with.”
What is “self-love”?
Self-love has been found to have many levels to it. While it is so easy to help those around us, it has been often found that loving ourselves is harder. The true definition states that you have regard for one’s own well-being and happiness.
Sounds pretty simple right? Ultimately, the importance of loving yourself is; by allowing there to be love for yourself, you can fully and genuinely love others too. Self-love is something that can affect you if you are lacking in this department.
This is the thing that tells you before you leave your house, “I’m going to have a great day!” When you decide to love yourself and give encouragement, you will truly be happy. Everything else will usually follow.
How do you learn to love yourself?
Learning to love yourself is a long and treacherous journey if this is something that you struggle with daily. The first step is to figure out the reason(s) why you have difficulty finding personal love?
It may be because you experienced a traumatic event, you may have problems expressing yourself, trouble with looking in the mirror, or you may not think you are worthy. Whatever the reason may be, it does not define you. You are worth your love and more! To help the process of learning you must:
- First is to recognize that you are having trouble with loving yourself
- Do some digging into what is causing this feeling and accept it
- Write down 3 positive things in your life at least 3 times a week (then review them weekly)
- Find out what helps you feel better and gives you a positive feeling towards yourself
- Learn how to set healthy boundaries for yourself and realize that self-love is not selfish
- Remove toxic relationships from your life
Is self-love selfish?
This can be one of the biggest things that hold many of us back from being able to express positive feelings to ourselves. Do you feel like you are being selfish when you subconsciously give yourself a compliment? It is not wrong, nor should you stop doing this! The goal is to give yourself at least one compliment a day. Look in the mirror and find something that you really like about yourself (inside or outside).
Yes, being realistic about a situation can be hard at times, but some of us like to play the victim and others like to play the bad guy. If you can remember that things will happen to you every single day, both bad and good, and you have no control over most of these things.
Evaluate the situations that make you upset and even try to look at it from another person’s point of view. Also, nobody is happy every single day, every moment, or every time you see them. So it is okay for you to have your unhappy times too.
Try something new
If you don’t have a hobby that you engage in at least once per week, find something! This could be taking a walk/run every evening, painting/drawing, cooking/baking, music, etc.
Whatever it may be, this will help you with having something to look forward to every day/week. Be sure to drop those inner critical feelings at the door during this activity too. It will assist in clearing your mind and freeing your soul.
Detox your mind, body, and soul
The full mind and body detox has so many benefits. However, your detox can be simply cleaning out your closet. Most people stuff a lot of unnecessary stuff in there and cleaning it out and throwing away the things you don’t need will be a huge weight lifted from your shoulders!
And it means a cleaner room. You may also want to clean out a storage unit or a box that you refuse to open because there are things in there that you don’t want to see. This small but large act will allow you to bring other, more positive things into your life!
Rewarding yourself can be extremely fun! Don’t go overboard, obviously. But there are ways to let yourself find pleasure in the small things that you complete and do well.
If you can go the whole day without being negative, buy yourself a yummy coffee or iced tea. There are many ways to reward yourself, and being social with a group of friends is also a good one too.
You need a supportive environment
Be careful about the people that you choose to keep in your life. If they are someone who is always there for you and provides good memories, keep them. If they are someone that makes you feel bad about yourself and is someone who just wants things from you, not very healthy for your life.
By evaluating the people who have a positive influence on you, and the ones that don’t, you will be lifting a lot of weight off of your shoulders. These people are also the ones that want to hear about you trying to make positive changes to your life.
The ones that won’t be jealous because you are finding happiness in the little things and making more time to have to yourself. Often times we hang around people who are not positive and being around them all the time causes us to be negative too.
Stop comparing yourself, love yourself
Comparing yourself can be so hard on you. When we start to compare ourselves, our self-worth tends to decrease and it affects our self-love in turn.
Comparisons are acceptable when they are small and not comparing something huge like body type or relationship.
More so, something like the color of her top. That is something that you can change and it is realistic. It is a thing that you can easily go buy or find a similar one. When you start to get into the things about yourself that are almost impossible to change, you tend to lose yourself in a mess of criticism. You are beautiful just the way you are.
Also, remember that everybody’s life always looks better than it really is on the inside. This is very common and everybody does it! We see somebody who may have great pictures on social media, their life looks so fun, they are so happy with their partner… The list is never-ending and the pictures that you see are mostly staged. Remember, we ALL have problems, regardless of who we are.
Accept the things you cannot change
During your journey of finding ways to love yourself, you will find that there are many things that you cannot change. That is okay. All you can do is learn how to accept them and move forward. Simple acts like this will help you in so many different situations during your life, it is a life-saver. When things get hard, our first response is to think negatively and results in the worst state of mind. Let your first response be, “Stuff happens and I will overcome it.”
Care for yourself and the rest will follow
Life is one crazy rollercoaster of ups and downs. It is unpredictable and stressful, but life is also wonderful and brings you times of joy! Once you learn to input these healthy habits of caring for yourself, the rest will follow.
There is no question that you will not struggle. You will, we all do! But the you that can push through and focus on your successes rather than your failures, will truly flourish! Take this one step in front of the other, one day at a time. Remember that you need to be loved by yourself before you can give love to others. Be aware of your inner voice and learn to trust your instincts (they are there for a reason).
You will find yourself, your true self/who you want to be, what you like and don’t like, and where you want to go. Your plan is important. Self-love is a necessity, not a luxury that can be thrown away.
The positive behavior that you exhibit may have a ripple effect on someone else and you can change somebody’s life by it. Make a plan to love yourself, love all parts of you, the good and the bad!
The more often that you practice acts of self-love, the stronger your love gets, and the stronger you get! Practice really does make perfect.