Why is it so hard to love ourselves? Isn’t it something that we should be doing naturally and instinctively? Isn’t it something that we were born doing? Babies are born in love with themselves, it’s easy. Somewhere down the line many of us lost the ability to love and accept ourselves exactly as we are. Imperfect. With flaws. Human.
I spent a lot of time in that place. It wasn’t nice. I was waiting and expecting someone else to love me instead without realising that it’s not really their job.
Your most important job is to learn how to love yourself. When we do so it changes everything. Others will see and learn from us because when we show ourselves love, respect and appreciation every day our lives change for the better.
How To Love Yourself Starting Now
1. Self care – look after yourself. eat well, drink lots of water, your body is a finely tuned machine that needs care. Care about your appearance – not in a shallow Hollywood, celebrity way. More about caring how you look so you feel good. Get a good haircut, dress in clothes and colours that suit you.
2. Have a role model – who inspires you in how they look after themselves? What do they do regularly? How can you copy that for yourself?
3. Affirmations – not so much of the ‘morning tiger’ in front of the mirror when you’re feeling rubbish but more like, ‘I’m getting there, I’m learning how to love myself, I’m learning to appreciate myself.’ Can you manage that?
4. Forgiveness – what happened in the past to get in the way of you loving yourself? Did you do something you feel ashamed of or regret? Let it go my lovely, it’s in the past and dwelling on it is not going to change it. Forgiveness. It’s THE word.
5. Ban all negative self-talk. What? You don’t talk to yourself? Oh but you do! All the time! Ask yourself this…’Would I allow someone I love dearly to talk to themselves the way I talk to myself?’ I doubt it very much. So stop it. Take time to listen to what you say in your head. Notice and be loving….be kind…be caring. It’s one of the greatest things you can do for yourself.
6. Stand in front of the mirror and say hello (yes, it’ll feel weird), compliment yourself on one thing you like about yourself – your fine mind, your eyebrows, the freckle on your arm, your hair…..find just one thing and really mean it. Next time you’re going to appreciate another one thing about yourself.
7. Exercise that body, move it every day. Sing and dance. Show it some love. Appreciate how your body works for you every single day. Exercising releases endorphins, the happy hormones….that’s got to be good. Right?
8. Journalling and meditation – some of the ways to look after your spiritual needs, it’s all part of the journey towards learning how to love yourself.
9. Set boundaries allowing limited access into your life from toxic people. They bring you down, don’t do it. Surround yourself with those that lift you up and help you raise your game.
10. Remember that you’re a work in progress, some days are going to be easier than others. One bad day does not make a bad life. Lighten up on yourself.
11. Be in nature – it gives its love freely. Spend time looking up towards the sky, embrace the enormity of the universe, the flora and the fauna on your doorstep. Appreciate how we are a part of the cosmos….how can there not be love within this greatness?
12. Unconditional love – it’s something we hopefully received as children and something as parents we give freely. This is the exact same love to feel for ourselves. It’s the kind of love that is without borders, it’s love without judgment or justification. This is the ultimate love. Remember how it feels to love or be loved unconditionally and guide it inwards.
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