At first glance, that may seem like a ridiculous notion, learning to love yourself. Is it really though? Take a moment and think about your life: your pressures, responsibilities, time restraints….the list is endless really. With the constant drains on your time and energy, it’s easy to forget to take time for yourself. So much so, it’s also easy to forget how to.
If you are one of those people who care deeply for others, chances are you generously give of yourself and neglect your own needs. By constantly putting others’ dreams, desires and feelings before your own, you are sacrificing a small part of your very being. Sooner or later you will become collateral damage and feel like you don’t matter. If you don’t value or love yourself, why should anyone else?
Love Yourself, Unconditionally
Loving yourself means you embrace your quirks and imperfections with courage and grace. Learn how to celebrate you. Stop being so quick to berate yourself for mistakes you make; instead, take them in your stride and learn from them. Allow yourself the opportunity to grow, become wiser and not make the same mistakes again.
Slow down, life isn’t a race. At the end of the day, if you think it is, chances are you only racing against yourself in a competition you will never truly win. Take time for yourself doing something you enjoy, something that benefits no one but you.
If a regular spa treatment sounds like an unattainable nirvana, maybe you should invest in a luxurious pampering with accessories available from places like LivingEarthCrafts.com. Lose yourself in a book. Draw. Write. Nap. Regardless of what your “you time” consists of, do something for no one but yourself and embrace the rejuvenation that will ensue.
Mind Over Matter
That little voice inside your head has a lot to answer for; make it be as kind to you as you are to others. Slowly condition yourself to turn your negative self-talk into the positivity and encouragement you would effortlessly offer to those you care about. When you find yourself being hypercritical and damning, do the opposite of what you normally would.
For example, instead of punishing yourself at the gym because the jeans you tried on don’t flatter you in a way you wished they did, pamper yourself instead. Realize that any changes you want to make will not be achieved in a single instance. By being harsh with something you perceive as a failure, you are reinforcing negative self-talk. Embrace your current physical form and take care of what you do have instead of potentially bringing harm to yourself for what you aren’t.
Surround yourself with people who celebrate and support you. Having a positive group of friends or family nearby will help you to stay positive about yourself when you are struggling. They will remind you of the positive qualities you possess that are uniquely you when you need it most.
Along the same lines, end toxic relationships. You want, and more importantly need, to be around people who lift you up, not drag you down and make you feel inadequate. If you have people like that in your life, it’s time to walk away because they clearly do not deserve your time or attention. Know your worth.
Life is not a competition, so stop comparing yourself to others; you are not them. Celebrate your small victories. Regardless of how small an accomplishment, the ability to appreciate the positive things you’ve done will always be more important than beating yourself up for your perceived failures or shortcomings.