Go Ahead and Love Yourself
Everyone battles with self-esteem issues now and then. There are ways to have a consistently loving relationship with ourselves, but you have to work at it persistently. So often we look to others to provide validation for us, but it's crucial to learn how to do it for yourself. Try using these 11 positive habits that help foster self-love, and help it prevail in your everyday life.
1. Make taking care of yourself a priority
A lot of women think that they're too busy to do something just for themselves every day. If you're one of these women, stop over-thinking! You don't have to fit in a trip to the spa every day to take care of yourself. Let yourself relax for 15 or 20 minutes and enjoy part of a book you've meant to read, or watch an episode of your favorite TV show. Self-care is replenishing your body and your soul; however you want to go about it.
2. Be present in the moment
It is important to be mindful of what is going on in your life and be present for these moments. Live in the now, let your thoughts and emotions come and go, without holding on to them to stress and worry over. This, and having an open-minded attitude will help you feel secure in yourself.
3. Honor your body
People who love and respect their body will eat healthy foods and exercise regularly. If you listen and are aware of what's going on in your body, it will let you know what you need to do to take care of it. It's vital to do this because your body is the only one you're ever going to have. Stay away from activities and unhealthy eating habits that could do you harm.
4. Be patient with yourself
You know the saying, "Rome wasn't built in a day." The same goes for loving yourself and growing that self-love. Take each day as it comes, and don't forget to give yourself a pat on the back for the goals you are reaching, no matter how small. Remember that it's not all about the big things you've accomplished, it's about learning to express yourself and appreciate yourself in new ways.
5. Forgive yourself
No one is perfect, even though you've heard that a million times, it can still be hard to accept. We can be so critical of ourselves. It can be hard to love yourself when you're still clinging to guilt about things that happened in your past. Finding a way to let go of the shame of these mistakes, while also making a real commitment to change will improve your ability to love yourself. Everyone makes mistakes, what counts is how well you learn from those errors to make your life and the lives of those around you better.
6. Don't be afraid to make plans!
Goals are important! They help us move forward. Setting concrete goals, then taking the steps needed to accomplish them will help your self-esteem. Learning to love yourself is a process, and making plans that interest you and inspire you will only assist you on your journey. Create goals with an open mind; they can be career oriented or maybe it's just something you've always wanted to learn. Remember to give yourself credit for making and achieving these goals!
7. Don't compare yourself to others
You're never going to get anywhere in life if you're always worried about what someone else has or hasn't done. All you're going to accomplish is depression and loneliness when holding yourself up against people that you deem "better". This, of course, is detrimental to improving self-love. So as much as you can, try not to compare yourself to others, whether it be in real life or on social media.
8. Practice positive self-talk
More often than not we are our worst critics. Constantly berating yourself in your mind is never going to help you. You need to talk positively to yourself, practice being caring and compassionate when dealing with your thoughts. Try to imagine what your best friend would say to you instead of the hurtful comments you throw around in your head. You have to be the one to show yourself that there is a better side of you.
9. Enjoy your alone time
Many of us are scared of being alone, and we don't take advantage of the time that we spend by ourselves. Being lost in thought without anything to distract you can be scary, but you can also learn to use these moments as tools. Spend your time alone in deep contemplation, try to relax your body and take a break, even in periods of high stress. These moments where you're able to look inside yourself and find a comforting place will inspire you to move forward in growing your self-love.
10. Get rid of the negative people in your life
A garden can't flourish when it's buried in garbage, and the same goes for cultivating self-love. If you have toxic relationships, they are going to be harmful to your attitude and your self-esteem. If your friends treat you and themselves with respect, love, and compassion, then great! Those are just the kinds of people you need in your life. If the opposite happens, it is time to cut them loose and surround yourself with people that are going to affect you and your peace of mind positively.
11. Do things you love!
There are a lot of people that have to work dull, boring jobs to be able to pay their bills, and there's nothing wrong with that. Sometimes that's just how life has to be, but what are you doing with the rest of your day? You still have free time that you can use to nourish your mind, body, and soul. What are you good at? What interests and hobbies do you have? If you're not sure, you should take the time to explore different options and figure it out. Taking part in activities that you enjoy and make you feel good about yourself will also make you happier overall.
It's easy to get into a rut in life when you're having a hard time loving yourself. The more you learn to love yourself, the happier you'll be, and the closer you will get to achieving the life that you want.