So how to love yourself? You probably asked yourself this question a lot of the time and I have been struggling with self-love and self-acceptance for years and even a decade. It’s hard to admit it because I was always advocating for self-acceptance and loving yourself as you are (and striving for better). But as someone who has been bullied by strangers and relatives, realizing what self-love and confidence actually mean, was a bit challenging.
But last year, I finally understood why it is important to love yourself, and it opened my eyes. So here are 5 easy tips to help you with self-love and self-acceptance. Moreover, in the end, you will find a free printable with 10 prompts for self-love.
You only have one body, one life (in this body), and one you
Accept your situation, yourself, and your life as they are. Be honest with yourself and see everything for what it is. Believe me, it is painful but it will open many doors for you to finally start going in the right direction. Accepting myself and my life, although I still complain about the latter a lot, was a big step that allowed me to see all the ways I can improve myself and make my life better.
If you keep denying your reality, you just block all the options and potential to make yourself better. We only have this body, this life and to live a life in constant hate or neglect of ourselves is a waste of time. You can’t take another body from a shelf and become Angelina Jolie or Monica Bellucci. So stop comparing yourself to others and accept everything you are (or not) and everything you have (or don’t) as it is.
Remember, we can run from others but never from ourselves. Once this step is completed, you will see at least a few ways to improve your situation.
Start setting boundaries
Setting boundaries means self-respect. You have to start saying “no” to uncomfortable situations, to the things that you don’t like or that don’t benefit you. However, it doesn’t mean saying “no” only to others, you need to set boundaries with yourself, as well. Maybe, it sounds weird but self-love is not permissiveness rather an ability to control and respect yourself, to know your limits, and make the best decisions for yourself.
You want to relax, eat ice cream and watch a movie? Fine! But if you do it every single day, sorry to break it to you, it’s not self-love, it’s self-destruction or laziness. Start taking responsibility for your actions and decisions every day (step-by-step mentality) and finally set those boundaries.
Confront your traumas and start healing yourself
It is a hard step, believe me. We want to escape traumas and hard situations not to dive deeper. But this step is crucial to become free from prejudices and false judgments and narratives. They cannot influence our life and self-esteem.
I had to confront my issues with my appearance and body. Why did I hate my body? Because a few relatives bullied me and “joked” that if they had kids who were fat (😐) they’d give them diet drinks? I was 12 at that time. The issue was not me or my body. The issue was these people affected by society and dealing with their own insecurities (AKA you have to be skinny in order to be successful or accepted). When I realized that, I was able to free myself from the pain. Don’t get me wrong, it still hurts but not the way it used to. I love my body now.
I had to confront other past situations as well. Constant self-reflection, analysis, journaling, and shadow work really helped me. However, I am not a medical advisor or a psychologist, if you think you need medical help, please, go to a specialist!
But here is a little list that helps me to heal from the past traumas:
- Researching articles on how to love yourself. You can find a lot of good information and understand which path to go.
- Listening to positive music
- (Art) journaling
- Self-reflection and shadow work
- Asking myself “why” something triggered, provoked, or affected me in a negative way
- Working with affirmations
- Doing the things I like – art, writing, social media, taking photos, taking care of myself and my health, walking
- Surrounding myself with positive people and things whether it is online or offline.
Work on your mind
If you are actively working on healing your traumas and healing yourself, you also need to start reprogramming yourself, your mind, and old thoughts and patterns.
Try to turn negative into positive. Start working with affirmations and surround yourself with positive things and people (yes, even virtually). Affirmations are a great tool. Whenever I start getting angry at myself and start thinking that I am worthless for a tiny mistake, I stop myself and say the following “You are amazing, I love you. You’re doing great. You deserve good things“. It’s a tiny thing, and in the beginning, it will be so hard to say these things but believe me, it will change the way you think about yourself and it will teach you how to love yourself even more. Just have fun with it!
Create a self-love routine
In order to succeed, I highly recommend you to create a daily/weekly/monthly/yearly self-love routine. It’s not important how small or big these actions are, it’s important that you stick to them. If you struggle with introducing habits into your life, read my blog post about building new habits.
Choose a few things that uplift you and make you feel better, healthier, or loved. It can be meditating, going for a short walk, applying an eye cream, journaling. It’s totally up to you. The most important part is that you create a positive atmosphere and experience good emotions during this time. This step will teach you about what makes you happy and how to love yourself in the physical world.
Download this free printable
This workbook has 10 prompts that will help you to know yourself better. I constantly go back to these prompts because they’re a lot of fun and it’s a good way to monitor your emotions and feelings. Simply click on the image below to download it.
I hope these simple steps will be helpful to you! I know you deserve the best and you can do it. Stop neglecting yourself and show yourself some love 🤍
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