Updated: Oct 7, 2020
We are used to demonstrate love to others, but what about showing love toward ourselves? For the most, this seems to be a little more complicated.
'How do I learn to love myself?' It's a question that gets asked a lot.
The answer is: 'How do you show love to others?' Your response will most likely include one or more of the following:
I respect their feelings
I pay attention to their needs
I make time for them
I make sure they feel ok
I try to make their life easier
I give them the time to figure out things
I give them some space when they need it
I accept them the way they are
I appreciate their help
I value their effort
That's what loving and taking care of someone looks like, and if you want to begin loving yourself, these same efforts need to be applied to you.
It's not uncommon for it to feel somewhat challenging. Especially if you come from a long practise of ruminating and overthinking, and most likely engaging in self-criticism and self-blame about the way you look, how you behave, what you say and constantly comparing yourself with others. For some reason, this seems to come naturally for the most, but it is not helpful at all. In fact, negative self-talk damages your self-esteem and the way you experience your life.
Show yourself the same kindness, patience and attention you would show to others. Be patient. Learning new skills takes time.
Make time for yourself and do things you like to do. Appreciate each one of the little things you do for yourself, and be patient when the results take some time to be evident.
Pay attention to your thoughts, you may be creating barriers unknowingly. You might also have an innate instinct to take care of others or maybe it's simply a learned behaviour, and for some reason, you don't feel to deserve the same care.
Loving yourself is a choice that only you can take. You are accountable for the way you treat and talk to yourselves, and how you allow others to treat you.
Once you accept that you are the one in charge, it becomes a huge responsibility. However, committing to yourself is worth the effort.
"Be kind to your body, gentle with your mind and patient with your heart. Stay true to your spirit, cherish your soul and never doubt yourself. You are still becoming, my love, and there is no one more deserving of the nurturing grace of your love." ― Becca Lee
Practising self-care is a way of loving yourself. Making a habit of showing little acts of kindness can go a long way. Daily self-care is what helps you to build your safe space, a space you can be comfortable in when life becomes challenging. It is the mental state you prepare for yourself to promote relaxation or to re-energize.
There are a few steps to follow to practice self-care. First of all, find the right activity. It has to be something you:
Can fit in your timetable
Can allow financially
Have easy access to
Your self-care activities don't need to be expensive. They don't even have to take up too much of your time. Implement them in your daily life, make a commitment to yourself.
Avoid to chose activities that are impossible to fit in your schedule, are boring or too confronting, as you will very soon find excuses to skip them.
Taking care of yourself will boost positive feelings, it will help you better deal with stress, think more flexibly and therefore improve your day-to-day life.
In my next blog, I will be recommending some free activities you can do that might have a positive impact on you and the way you feel about yourself.
If you want to know more, feel free to contact me.