Disclaimer: We act as affiliates for trusted merchants and we may earn referral commissions resulting from purchases of products or services recommended on this website. You can see the full disclosure here.
So often we get caught up in all the responsibilities we have, that we forget about ourselves. Our priorities get skewed. Our minds and bodies become tired. Suddenly the world becomes foggy and it’s difficult to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
When this happens it’s likely that we have put self-love as a low priority. Perhaps it’s not been made a priority at all, or the know-how isn’t there.
To practice self-love, you have to truly understand what it is. Self-love is often thought of as being vain or conceited. This is not the truth. A simple way of looking at self-love is putting your own well-being and happiness as a priority in your life.
Self-love is not being vain. It is about caring for yourself.
Self-love is about taking care of your needs, both physically and emotionally. It’s about liking yourself.
If you don’t take care of yourself, it’s hard to take care of others who rely on you.
If you are ready to start practicing self-love, whether you’ve become distracted by life or never learned how these five actionable steps can help you get started today.
1. Give yourself permission to love yourself
In my opinion, this is the very first step for developing self-love. So many of us doubt whether or not we have the right to be cared about. Here’s the thing, it is a basic human right.
Honestly, it has to start with self-love. We have to open ourselves up to the idea that it’s not only OK but that it’s necessary to love ourselves.
Even if we don’t notice it, our whole day is spent either allowing something or not.
Giving yourself permission is quite simple in theory. All you have to do is acknowledge to yourself that you are allowing self-love to be a priority in your life.
While this seems easy enough, doing it just once may not be as effective as you hope. It may need to be done every day, or even multiple times a day. Say it to yourself as often as needed until you believe it with all your heart.
2. Forgive yourself
Life happens. We all make choices, some of which we are not so proud of. Holding on to the choices, mistakes, or consequences can lead to pent up negative energy. This can linger and make it difficult to feel at best no matter how hard we try.
Additionally, there are times that we are angry at ourselves even when it is not warranted. For example, When someone disrespects us and we blame ourselves.
Forgiveness allows us to let go of the negative emotions and move onto adding positivity into our lives. When we hold on to anger at ourselves it creates doubt and fear. It builds walls between the person we are and the person we should be.
When I went through the initial phase of self-forgiveness it took me a while. The first day I found many thought patterns and things from my past that I needed to let go of. It took me several hours. Then over the next few days, I had to repeat the process for some of the things. Now I am able to forgive myself as the need arises and move on.
3. Let go of comparisons
Self-love is about being true to yourself.
Society is set up in a way that gives us a false sense of what we are expected to be. Sometimes the people around create these expectations as well.
Social media shows a lot of people living it up. Sometimes this can create negative feelings about our own life. It can be helpful to quit following the profiles that make you feel bad and replace them with profiles that make you feel good. I personally follow people and businesses that have a lot of positive quotes and uplifting posts.
We are all beautiful in our own way.
4. Positive affirmations
What we hear affects our mental health and picture of who we are. If our thoughts are negative we are going to feel bad, but if our thoughts are positive we will feel good.
Now, this doesn’t happen overnight. We have to work at it. To get our minds to think in a positive way, we can use positive affirmations.
Simply put, you write some positive sentences about how you want to feel and say them to yourself daily.
If you would like to know more about positive affirmations check this post out here.
5. Surround yourself with positive people
Just like what we think affects us, so do the people around us.
When people are negative and constantly talking about how bad things are, it can drain our energy. It can make us feel as though everything is stressful as well, even if life is going great.
If the people around us are positive in nature, we can pick that up too.
As we get older more choices become available to us. Choosing people who have a positive impact on our lives helps us stay balanced.
I would like to take a moment to point out that it is not the responsibility of others to make you happy, that has to come from within. However, if you choose people with positive attitudes it creates an environment that is easy to be happy in.
When I am around a positive person, I feel good. I feel inspired. I like what I am doing, even if I’m doing nothing because the energies around me are uplifting.
I hope that these five tactics have been helpful. I know that they have helped me tremendously.
Starting a self-love journey is a large step towards being the best you, you can be. It’ll be difficult sometimes, especially at the beginning. Just take small steps daily and you will get there. Before you know it you may not recognize yourself anymore.
What was your experience when you first started on your self-love journey? Leave a comment below to let me know!