So many of us spend all of our energy taking care of others needs, all the while neglecting our own. When was the last time that you paid special attention to your own physical, mental and emotional needs? If you have to think past today it’s been too long. Self-love and self-care are vital parts of maintaining a healthy and happy lifestyle.
It’s not the least bit selfish either. When you’re at your best the people who depend on you benefit too. We are always trying to instill confidence and self-love in our friends and families but don’t always set the best example. By taking care of yourself you are setting a standard for others to emulate.
We are always changing and growing through different experiences and stages of life. That is part of the reason why learning how to love yourself is a lifelong journey that takes constant practice. Below are four steps to help you achieve genuine love for yourself and activities that you can weave into your daily practices.
To begin you must be completely open, honest and vulnerable with yourself. This is necessary if you want to reach the root of any problems or challenges that are holding you back from being healthier and happier.
Identify these struggles and start to think of small adjustments and steps that you can take to improve them. Mind mapping is a great activity to try for this. Take a look at a time where something didn’t go the way you wanted and retrace your actions and thoughts to see where your problems stemmed from.
When your inner voice starts to turn negative, stop and think what you really need in that moment. Often times we use negativity and self-deprecation to distract from a different or deeper problem. Once you find the roof your negative thoughts figure out ways to reconcile so that you can move on.
If there is something that is truly out of your control, learn how to let it go and don’t let it keep you from your self-love practices. We often judge ourselves in ways that we would never judge others so try writing a kind and honest letter to yourself as if you were your own best friend.
Address the needs of your physical, mental and spiritual health. For example, look for some form of exercise that you will enjoy doing. Whether you love running, yoga, dancing or walking, try to get active every day. Take mental breaks from work or home life when you can and hit your reset button!
Find positive ways to motivate yourself to improve and grow. Try reciting positive affirmations to yourself if you’re feeling down or unmotivated to help get your mindset back to a more positive space. Take time to understand out what brings you joy and figure out how to incorporate more of those things into your daily life.
Everyone needs someone to lean on every now and again. Cultivate relationships with loved ones that you trust and let them in. Make it a point to communicate your feelings and needs more clearly.
Establish an exercise or activity that you can rely on when you need a break and be straightforward about what you need. This could be a walk around the block, meditation, listening to your favorite song or something else that’s tailored to you. Lastly, take these self-care habits that you’ve learned and uphold them as a priority!
Keep in mind that self-love is a journey and that it may not always be smooth but don’t quit on your progress. The rewards of truly loving yourself are boundless and you deserve to be the happiest and healthiest that you can be. Check out this infographic by ProFlowers below to recap the journey of self-love and share this information with friends!