How many times have you heard "you need to love yourself before you can love anyone else". This is something that comes naturally for some but can be extremely hard for others. Some people have had some very tough experiences, sometimes one bad thing after the other. Some experiences effect you so deeply that loving yourself seems impossible. I've been working on loving myself for a very long time. Sometimes I have it down but other times I have to work harder, especially when the negative thoughts get in the way or something bad happens.
Loving yourself helps you to glow and will help you to feel uplifted rather than getting in the dumps, a place where you'll most likely stop taking care of yourself. Realising your value is essential to your survival and can be the anchor to your mindset.
Before I go any further, I am not an expert in this area. I'm just sharing what works for me and what I've learned from others. This post may not be helpful to you if have a mental health disorder. It is meant for people who from time to time, experience anxiety, depression. If what you're experiencing has an impact on the way you think or interact and it impedes you from doing regular day to day activities, please seek help from a professional.
Here are ways to help you maintain a loving relationship with yourself.
- Treat yourself. It may be that piece of cheesecake you're craving or maybe it's that rug that that would be just right for your living room. Whatever it is, save for it, find it, and get it for yourself.
- Music. Listen to your favorite songs. Not the ones that make you cry but the ones that make feel good, remind of good times, and put a smile on your face. When I feel down, I put music on and next thing you know, I'm singing and moving with a big smile on my face.
- Be ready to put in the work. You have to want to love yourself and actively do the work emotional, physical and mental work to demonstrate value for your unique self.
- Observe and study women who exude confidence. Next time you see a super confident woman, pay attention. Sit back and watch her work the room, watch how she walks, and look at what she's wearing. I guarantee you, she knows she looks good, her walk is runway worthy, she's wearing something stylish, and her makeup and hair is on point. She loves herself . When you love yourself, your confident, and when you're confident, people admire you.
- Discover what's beautiful about yourself by finding the beauty in others. Get to know people that you aren't usually drawn to. You'll be surprised by how interesting and fun people can be when you take your time get to know them. People are like onions, there are so many more layers than what you see. I have been blown away many times.
- Say uplifting things to yourself. Make an effort to be mindful and catch yourself when you're putting yourself down. For some reason, the bad things are easier to believe. For some reason we believe the 1 over the 10 You can have ten people compliment you on something and one person puts you down, . For some reason, just as Julia Roberts said in the movie Pretty Woman, "the bad things are easier to believe". From today on, acknowledge compliments by saying thank you and then take the time to digest the positive feedback.
- Rejection is protection. When you don't get the things you want or something doesn't go your way, it just wasn't meant to be and something much better suited to your needs is in store for you. For example, if you don't get the job you were really hoping to get, don't get mad. Acknowledge that rejection protection and the right door will open for you.
- Nobody's perfect. We all have things we don't like about our appearance but it's time to take notice of what you do like about yourself. Much of your appearance is a result of how you feel, it's truly about how you see yourself. Who cares if you're not perfect, nobody is so go ahead and work it! Love what you have and make it shine. Still can't? Then think about a man with a beer belly and pimples on his back. Does that stop them from getting busy? Hell no. So then why shouldn't love what you have? Don't hide your body when you're walking around the room naked, flaunt it, let it all hang out. Let it go and love yourself!
- Take time to play. Do you remember how you use to feel playing with makeup or playing dress up? Fabulous, right? Well it feels just as fabulous as a grown up. Play dress up by trying on your clothes and accessories. Try to mix and match them in new ways. Wear something you've never had the courage to wear. Play with your makeup or go get a free makeup consultation. Book some time with a makeup artist at places like Mac, Sephora, or Holt Renfrew. Do something different with your hair, even if you have no where to go. Ladies, you and I know that we absolutely love to feel pretty. Taking out the time to play will help you to discover new ways to enhance what you've got.
- Get yourself some pretty lingerie. You'd don't think you look good in lingerie? Hush, everybody looks good in lingerie. You've just got to get out there and find the pieces that enhance the parts of your body that you love. Just in case you're a woman who feels a little insecure during moments of intimacy, you're going to have to let it go or you just won't have fun. Bustle has a great article that can help you find the right lingerie for you.
- Surround yourself with people who love you. Loving yourself is much easier if you surround yourself with people who see the good in you, love you as you are, and have your best interest at heart. They will be your cheerleaders reminding you of how fantastic you are.
- Your surroundings have an impact on your mindset. Surround yourself with pretty things. Things that glitter and brighten up your surroundings. Make your home your fortress and comfort zone. Your home should be the place you feel safe, a place to decompress after a day of dealing with the world. Uplift your space by painting a room in your favorite color, get flowers for your home once a week, or fill your space with a relaxing fragrance.
Deep down inside you know the truth. You are beautiful, you are smart, and best of all, you are unique and your uniqueness is your gem.