“When a woman becomes her own best friend, life is easier.” – Diane Von Furstenberg
As a busy wife, daughter and friend, I have often found that I have a tendency to give out a lot of love to others, while neglecting myself in the process. And chances are, you can relate.
Self-love is imperative to the health of your relationships and equally as important to the state of your physical and mental health.
The thought of self-love may seem selfish, but I am here to tell you that it’s not! I am continuously amazed at how little we – as a society – seem to truly love ourselves, when in the end, how we choose to take care of ourselves matters more than anything. The good news is that it’s never too late to start.
I encourage you to make a commitment to yourself to begin to truly love all of you, right now, using these 10 steps to get you started.
You’ll find that once you start being kinder to yourself and speaking more positively to yourself, just how good you can – and should – feel. The better you feel, the more you will want to make self-love a daily practice; a healthy ritual to love yourself more, each and every day
Top 10 Tips To Love Yourself, Just As You Are!
1. Stop comparing yourself to others. You are your own amazing self with all your own amazing qualities. Your uniqueness is necessary and you matter.
2. Get to know yourself. Having some personal “alone time” is a wonderful way to recharge and relax from the hustle and bustle of life’s daily responsibilities. Schedule some time to journal, take a walk in your favorite park, get a massage, or have some quality R&R at home with a good book to read. Whatever makes you feel good, do that… and often!
3. Self-care is health care. You will love yourself more, when you take better care of the basics like good nutrition, exercise and a proper nights sleep. Preparation is key! Plan out your meals for the week and meal prep in advance, making dishes you can freeze. Vow to make exercise part of your daily regimen, whether going for a swim, walk, fitness class, hike. Or maybe chasing your kids around the house works up a sweat and is something you love! Remember, exercise doesn’t have to be going to the gym. Movement of any kind that gets your heart rate up is great!
Sleep is another crucial component to your well-being, so be sure to get a good nights sleep each night. One hour before bed, switch off your phone and all electronic devices and use this hour to unwind with a cup of herbal tea, maybe a soak in the bath or reading a good book. Keep your bedroom free of devices and work on setting up a dark and relaxing environment, free of the many electronics and clutter.
4. Gratitude Wins. It’s easy to be grateful when things are going smoothly, right? The real work lies in showing gratitude when things aren’t quite going your way. Every tough situation has the opportunity to teach you something, if you keep your eyes open to these learning opportunities. TIP: Keep a gratitude journal! It will get you focused for the day and help you see the beauty in even the simplest things. Start by writing down:
- 3 things you are grateful for today
- 1 person you are grateful for in your life
- 1 experience you’ve had that you’re grateful for
5. Do something fun. Remember when you were a child and a bike ride was so much fun, you lost track of time and before you knew it, it was time to head home for dinner? Do something you have not done for a long time but that you used to enjoy. Go on, I dare you!
6. Meditate. Practice meditation, starting with just ten minutes a day. Meditation enables a deeper understanding of who you are personally and allows you to learn to relax without distraction. It creates mindfulness and awareness. A great starter exercise is this:
Start with your breath. Breathing deeply slows your heart rate, relaxes your muscles and helps to focus your mind. Focus your attention on the breath and on how the body moves with each inhalation and exhalation. Notice the movement of your body as you breathe. Observe your chest, shoulders, rib cage and belly. Make no effort to control your breath, simply focus allow it to flow naturally. Your mind may wander, which is normal. But don’t worry! Just bring your focus back to your breaths, it still and just be.
7. LOVE. Look at yourself in a mirror and repeat after me: I LOVE MYSELF; I LOVE EVERYTHING I AM AND WILL BE; I LOVE MYSELF JUST AS I AM. Do this 3 times a day for at least 21 days (the time it takes to form a habit). Say it until you really believe it and then say it again.
8. Get creative. Paint, write, craft, sing, dance, whatever floats your boat, but release your inner creative spirit that is desperate to come out. More often than not, our daily jobs don’t allow us to spark our inner artist, so use your imagination and go for it!
9. Learn to say NO. You know, the opposite word of YES… the word that rolls off your tongue far too easily, leaving you depleted and exhausted?! By saying no to things that no longer serve you, this does not mean you are being unhelpful nor does it mean you have to explain yourself, it just means that you have other things that you’ve decided are more important at the moment and that’s okay!
10. Spoil yourself. why not send yourself a bunch of flowers, book in for a nice massage or a luxury bubblebath and candle night. After all, you are so worth it!