We hear over and over from self-help books and therapists, “Love yourself.” Even on Twitter, there are thousands of tweets, such as:
- U Gotta Love Yourself
- Take time for yourself.
- Treat yourself.
- Don’t forget to fall in love with yourself first.
- Fearlessly love yourself.
- Loving yourself is the only way to love others.
- Love yourself before you love another.
- And remember nobody’s feelings are more important than your own, so take the time to love yourself.
In today’s society, we are inundated with messages that admonish us to put “me” first. And while it is very important to love, accept and appreciate yourself to ensure your mental and emotional well-being are in order; it is equally important to not to become a conceited, self-absorbed nincompoop.
Learning how to love yourself is key to being able to love others. Establishing healthy relationships requires that the individuals in the relationship be healthy. Part of liking yourself involves recognizing your own good qualities, accepting your strengths and weaknesses also and being ok with who you are–flaws and all.
Loving yourself is a wonderful adventure; it’s like learning to fly. Imagine if we all had the power to fly at will? How exciting it would be! Let’s begin to love ourselves now.
What It Means to Love Yourself
Love is not only a feeling. It is a verb — an action. Take a moment to think about what it means to love a baby.
- You listen for the baby’s feelings and attend to distress immediately. You keep the baby monitor on when the baby is sleeping, so you know when the baby needs you.
- You hold and comfort the baby when he/she needs comforting, keeping your heart open to the baby so the baby feels your love and presence.
- You do all you can to create physical health for the baby.
- You mirror what is wonderful about the baby.
- You let the baby know, in many different ways, that he or she is vitally important to you.
How to love yourself and why that involves loving others
Be Truthful To Yourself.
Loving yourself requires you to be truthful about your own feelings. If you are happy, acknowledge the joy. If you are sad, acknowledge the sorrow. When you are truthful about your feelings, you do not try to lie to yourself or seek to bury your negative emotions. Instead, acknowledging what you feel provides a good guide to what your thoughts are. And as we all know, thoughts can be changed, so that healing and self-growth can take place.
Be Gentle and Kind and Patient.
Be gentle with yourself. Be kind to yourself. Be patient with yourself as you learn the new ways of thinking. Treat yourself as you would someone you really loved.
Express gratitude for the person that you are. For instance, cultivate an appreciation for your strengths and gifts. Also, feel a sense of gratitude that you are alive and well, and fully capable of making a difference in your life.
Distance yourself from those who bring you down.
Being in no relationship is better than being in a wrong one. Don’t worry too much about folks who don’t worry about you. Know your worth! When you give yourself to those who disrespect you, you lose. Your friends in life should motivate, inspire and respect you. Your circle should be well rounded and supportive. Keep it tight. Quality over quantity, always.
Believe in your abilities.
All things are possible! The key is to identify what you want, claim it as part of who you are, and believe that you are worthy to have it.
Start making the changes you know you need to make.
Just because something made you happy in the past doesn’t mean you have to keep it forever. If you want to see changes in your life today, you’ll have to do things that you’ve never done before. Different input = different output. Move away from the things that drain you and move toward the thoughts and activities that empower and fulfill you.
Boost Your Self Confidence.
Make a deliberate attempt to look for opportunities that can help improve your confidence. For instance, if you are particularly good at doing something, set aside more time to indulge and improve your skills on it. Knowing that you have particular gifts can boost your self-esteem.
Inject some fun into your life. Life is meant to be enjoyable. Don’t take life or yourself too seriously. If you can think of life in this manner, you automatically relax and quit worrying over things that do not matter.
Take Care of Your Body.
Learn about nutrition. What kind of fuel does your body need in order to have optimum energy and vitality? Learn about exercise. What kind of exercise do you enjoy? Cherish and revere the temple you live in.
Learn To See Beauty.
When you learn to see beauty in everything, you will also see beauty in yourself. Hence, stop to smell the flowers. Notice everything. Feel everything. The pink blush of the flowers in your garden, the greenness of the plains, the whisper of the gentle wind, or the myriad hues of an evening sky.
Do something every day that makes you happy.
There’s a big difference between empty fatigue and gratifying exhaustion. Life is too short. Invest in the activities you deeply care about. A good life is about making a good decision every day to do something that moves you – caring for yourself by doing things you care about.