We all know that it's important to love ourselves and I'm sure you've heard of the term "self-love" but what does it really mean?
Let's start with getting one thing straight, loving yourself and prioritizing yourself does not in any way make you a selfish person. Self-love is enlightening, it’s empowering and it is inspiring. Unfortunately, this form of pure love for oneself doesn’t come naturally, which makes it even more important for us to keep reminding ourselves to do so.
For many of us, self-love could mean taking a warm bath or pampering ourselves with an aromatic massage, but I feel that self-love could really mean so much more than just a weekend at the spa. It is more to do with what we can actually offer ourselves, something we can “do” for ourselves, in permanence and in whole.
It is to have inner acceptance, and just being ourselves, in mind, body and spirit. But how do we achieve that inner peace, resting comfortably within the depths of our skin?
First of all, it’s to embrace who we really are. To cultivate a certain attitude towards the way we think and how we treat ourselves, nurturing ourselves first before we nurture others around us. Because at the end of the day, no one else is going to take care of you, but you.
Give yourself permission to do things for yourself without the feeling of guilt or discomfort that you are not conforming to other people’s wants and needs. For many of you who have lived your whole lives caring about others and catering to other people’s needs over your own, this may not be an easy process, but it must be done.
1. Be kind to yourself
Being kind to yourself means being friendly and loving toward the feelings that you feel. Remember that it is normal to feel sad, hurt, anxious or afraid but these are all signs of strengths and not weaknesses. Don’t start saying things like “what’s wrong with me” or “why me”. You don’t feel these things because you aren’t good enough, or because you aren’t capable, but it is because you’re human. To be kind to yourself, allow a friendly space for the negative feelings you feel, and then let them go. Release them out into the world and manifest what you would like to happen next. Tell yourself that you’ll be OK, you’re strong, and that you’ll bounce back.
2. Own the way you are
Give yourself affirmations and tell yourself that you are capable, you are strong, you are awesome, you are powerful, and be the best you can be. Accept yourself with all the flaws and imperfections, and never be sorry for who you are.
3. Quit comparing
This has become such a platitude, but it is only a platitude because it is so important. Stop comparing your life to other people’s highlight reel on social media, they are an easy recipe for unhappiness and making you feel inadequate. Focus on your own self, your goals, your accomplishments, your beauty and your process. We all have our own strengths and weaknesses, we are all unique and incomparable. Make a conscious decision to live your life according to your own values, goals and dreams. Embrace who you are and harness your own energy to get further in life, in your own path.
4. Forgive yourself
We have all made mistakes in the past, let go of them and everything else that is holding you back. Forgive yourself for all the things that you regret and fill that void with a whole new you. Never let your past control your present, and forgive yourself with all your heart.
5. Thank yourself
Thank yourself for all the amazing things you have done, for all the hard work, for the courage, for the strength, and for being beautiful and wonderful just the way you are.
Show yourself the love you deserve.