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Self - Love

Updated: Feb 14, 2023


When I started my self discovery journey, I was so confused of how I could become more confident. Looking around at other beautiful, successful women, I wondered: How do they do it? How do they manage to feel so good? I wanted to find out, and I wanted to share with other women who, like me, who want to feel happy — want to feel well. Tapping into my creative energy, I set out to compile a resource anyone could use. I asked women I knew: What are your mantras and habits for self-care? What they told me was both revolutionary and a total no-brainer at the same time. If I can practice them, I know you can, too. Here are recipes for self-love that are simple in practice and multifaceted in their benefits.


1. Stop comparing yourself to others

We’re socialized to be competitive, so comparing ourselves to others is natural. But it can be dangerous. There’s just no point in comparing yourself to anyone else on the planet because there’s only one you. Rather, focus on yourself and your journey. The shift of energy, alone, will help you feel free.


2. Don’t worry about others’ opinions

In that same vein, don’t worry about what society thinks or expects of you. You can’t make everyone happy, so this is a waste of time and will only slow you down on your journey to being the best you.


3. Allow yourself to make mistakes

We’re told again and again from a young age “nobody’s perfect, everyone makes mistakes.” But the older you get, the more pressure you feel never to fail. Cut yourself some slack! Make mistakes so you can learn and grow from them. Embrace your past. You’re constantly changing and growing from who you once were into who you are today and who you will be one day.

So, forget about that voice in your head that says you need to be perfect. Make mistakes — lots of them! The lessons you’ll gain are priceless.


4. Remember your value doesn’t lie in how your body looks

This is fundamental! So many things in the world want to distract you from this powerful truth. Sometimes even your own internalized sexism affirms your thoughts of inadequacy. You are valuable because you are you, not because of your body.

So, wear what makes you feel good. If it’s a lot or if it’s a little, wear what makes you feel confident, comfortable, and happy.


5. Don’t be afraid to let go of toxic people Not everybody takes responsibility for the energy they put out into the world. If there’s someone who is bringing toxicity into your life and they won’t take responsibility for it, that might mean you need to step away from them. Don’t be afraid to do this. It’s liberating and important, even though it may be painful. Remember: Protect your energy. It’s NOT rude or wrong to remove yourself from situations or the company of people who are draining you.


6. Process your fears Like erring, feeling afraid is natural and human. Don’t reject your fears — understand them. This healthy exercise can really help with your mental health. Interrogating and evaluating your fears helps you to gain clarity and unmask issues in your life that were causing you anxiety. That, in turn, can help alleviate some — if not all — of your anxiety.


7. Trust yourself to make good decisions for yourself We so often doubt ourselves and our ability to do what’s right, when most of the time we do know in our hearts what’s best. Remember that your feelings are valid. You’re not losing touch with reality. You know yourself better than anyone else, so be your best advocate.


8. Take every opportunity life presents or create your own The timing is never going to be perfect for that next big step in your life. The set up may not be ideal, but that shouldn’t hold you back from reaching to meet your goals and dreams. Instead, seize the moment because it may never come back.


9. Put yourself first Don’t feel bad about doing this. Women, especially, can grow accustomed to putting others first. Although there’s a time and a place for this, it shouldn’t’ be a habit that costs you your mental or emotional well-being. Find the time to decompress. Without decompressing and recharging you can put serious strain on yourself. Whether it’s spending the day in bed or outdoors in nature, find what helps you decompress and dedicate time to this.


10. Feel pain and joy as fully as you can Allow yourself to feel things fully. Lean into pain, revel in your joy, and don’t put limitations on your feelings. Like fear, pain and joy are emotions that will help you understand yourself and ultimately realize that you are not your feelings.


11. Exercise boldness in public Get into the habit of speaking your mind. Boldness is like a muscle — it grows the more you exercise it. Don’t wait for permission to take a seat at the table. Join the conversation. Contribute your thoughts. Take action, and know that your voice is just as important as anyone else’s.


12. See beauty in the simple things Try to notice at least one beautiful, small thing around you every single day. Make note of it, and be grateful for it. Gratitude not only gives you perspective, it’s essential to help you find joy.


13. Be kind to yourself The world is full of harsh words and critique — don’t add yours to the mix. Speak kindly to yourself, and don’t call yourself mean things. Celebrate yourself. You’ve come so far and grown so much. Don’t forget to celebrate yourself, and not only on your birthday!


Takeaway Even if you don’t feel particularly powerful, think about how far you’ve come, how you’ve survived. You’re here, right now, alive and powerful beyond your knowledge. And be patient with yourself. Self-love may not happen overnight. But with time, it will settle itself into your heart.

Yes, you may struggle, but you’ll look back on these moments and see how they were stepping stones on your journey to being the best you.


Activities to Incorporate Self-Love

Saying “thank you” to others is something you learn at an early age. But how often do you thank yourself? Saying “thank you” to your body is one of the most important things you can do, especially when you’re pursuing a life of self-love and wellness. It’s not a habit that comes naturally because society is constantly telling us to change ourselves to fit a socially accepted standard. I’ve committed my life to help change society’s expectations and make self-love and body acceptance a mainstream concept. Here are eight ways you can appreciate your body with simple rituals for self-love and wellness.


1. Meditation Meditation is a beautiful way to center yourself. When life is stressful or your mind is racing, you can always turn to meditation. It’s also accessible to everyone because you can do it anywhere. All you need to do is find a quiet, comfortable space, close your eyes, and simply breathe. If you don’t know where to start, or you just prefer guided meditation, I would recommend downloading an app. There are lots of great ones out there! When you dedicate yourself to easing your mind every day, you will reap the benefits of meditation as your own wellness advocate.

2. Mindful movement Moving your body in a mindful way is much different than exercising or working out. This isn’t about forcing yourself to do something you hate. This is about tuning in to your body and asking yourself what you need. One of my favorite ways to move my body is walking outdoors with my dogs. I look at the sky, the flowers, the trees, and the beauty all around me. I become present and aware. I love the way my body feels. Find a way to move that makes both your body and mind feel good. Maybe a hike or a yoga class is what you’re looking for? If you haven’t found your mindful movement of choice, keep looking. Because the best part about finding it, is that you get to choose something you enjoy!

3. A good read / Journaling

When I first started exploring self-love, I really didn’t know what it meant. I knew how to love someone else, but how the heck do I love myself? My personal self-love journey eventually began at a yoga class. As I walked into the studio, I noticed my instructor had a journal. I asked her about it, she encouraged me to journal my thoughts and feeling of each class, and that led into each day. I found that journaling was a major way to let go, and express my daily feelings. frustrations, onto paper and relieve them from my spirit.


3. Surround yourself with joy

Where do you spend most of your time? Is it your desk at work? Is it your car? When you look around your surroundings, do you feel a burst of joy? If not, the next step is to create an environment you absolutely love.

My favorite things to surround myself with are fresh flowers, positive messages, pictures of people I love, salt lamps, essential oils, and my favorite books. It’s an act of self-love when you are in a comfortable environment full of the things that bring you joy. When you can smile by just looking around, you’re practicing self-love!


4. Ask for help Self-love is asking for help. When you’re having a hard time, you’ll be surprised that most people do want to be there for you. It may be hard to be vulnerable and ask for help, but one of the best ways to get through a tough time is getting the support you need. It’s okay to not be okay. The point is, you don’t have to go through it alone. Asking for the support you need is a gift that you get to give yourself.


5. Find your place of bliss We should all have that one place we can go to and feel blissful. For example, when I need a pick-me-up or a place to rejuvenate my soul, I head to a coffee shop. Something about sitting down at a table, surrounded by the positive energy, working on my computer, and sipping on a latte fills my needs. Think about where you love to go. Is it a walk along the beach? A hangout with friends? A Yoga or Reiki Session? An art class? Self-love is about filling up your own cup. When your cup is full, you can better serve others.


6. Slow down We live in such a fast-paced environment. Give yourself permission to slow down, enjoy the special moments, and take care of yourself. Here are a few different ways to slow down in your daily life. Eat slowly.

Every time you eat, make it a point to sit down without distractions. Make sure you chew slowly and actually taste what you are eating. This simple practice is a game changer in how you feel in your body every day. Breathe.

During your day, take a couple minutes to just breathe. Take 10 deep breaths and check in with your body. Allow yourself to re-center and refocus before you move on with your daily tasks.

Rest.

If you can tell that your body or your mind is overly exhausted, it’s important you allow yourself to give your body what it needs. Going to bed early without finishing the dishes is okay. Skipping your workout so you can get home early to veg out on the couch is okay. It’s okay to let your body rest. After all, it’s the vessel that carries us through every moment — it needs your attention and love. Resting in your own way will help you rejuvenate much faster and feel good in your body.


7. Mirror work I’m sure you look in the mirror daily. This can be a very negative experience for many because of the unkind inner dialogue you hear. Don’t listen to those words. Instead, when you look in the mirror, look yourself in the eyes and say “I love you.” Do it, even if you feel silly! Self-talk is proven to work. You can also put up a few notes on your mirror with positive, loving reminders. Waking up every day with a kind and loving message to yourself and your body will change the relationship you have with yourself in the most positive way.


8. Gratitude Having a morning and nighttime routine that’s dedicated to gratitude is an amazing way to boost your self-love. And all you need is a journal to start. When you wake up every morning and each night before you sleep, write down three things for which you’re grateful. It’s a beautiful way to honor yourself and your life. It’s a perfect time to say thank you to your body!

Remember, self-love is a multifaceted concept. Like any other relationship in your life, the one you have with yourself requires nurturing, patience, and kindness. There are many ways to practice self-love, and these are just a few. Explore different methods of caring for yourself, and find what makes you feel joyous and healthy — in your mind, body, and soul.

It can begin with a simple “thank you.”


How to Fall In Love with YOURSELF:

There’s little time left over on hectic days: You’re stretched thin tying your kid’s shoelaces, remembering to bring in treats for your co-worker’s birthday, and volunteering to join another committee. But if it’s been awhile since you did something nice for yourself, it’s time to prioritize some self-love! Self-love influences everything from who you date, to how you are perceived at work, to how well you cope when the kids test your limits at home. It’s beneficial to your mental health, so there’s no need to feel guilty about taking some time for yourself. Plan to give some time, attention, and affection to the most important person in your life. Indulge in some serious self-care and get to know yourself even better. Here are nine creative ideas for how to get started.


1. Hit the road alone

There’s little time left over on hectic days: You’re stretched thin tying your kid’s shoelaces, remembering to bring in treats for your co-worker’s birthday, and volunteering to join another committee. But if it’s been awhile since you did something nice for yourself, it’s time to prioritize some self-love! Self-love influences everything from who you date, to how you are perceived at work, to how well you cope when the kids test your limits at home. It’s beneficial to your mental health, so there’s no need to feel guilty about taking some time for yourself. Plan to give some time, attention, and affection to the most important person in your life. Indulge in some serious self-care and get to know yourself even better. Here are nine creative ideas for how to get started.


2.Candle Lit Dinner for 1:

Pull out the nice dishes and your favorite candles — it’s time to go all out. And it’s just for you. Whether you go out or stay home, revel in your favorite foods and savor each bite. There’s no need to rush. It’s all about you, which means no screens or distractions. Instead, try to reconnect with yourself and stay in the moment.


3. Silent retreat

If being alone with yourself is terrifying, or if you can’t stop talking about how hard it would be to not talk, a silent retreat might be for you. Most retreats guide you through meditation and other exercises to sort through the chaos in your mind. There’s no pressure to perform or make friends — this retreat is all about decluttering your mind.

If a guided retreat isn’t in the cards, you can do your own. Go camping overnight somewhere without cell service, or turn off all of your devices for a silent staycation. No matter what you do, bring a journal and get ready to spend some serious time looking inward.


4. Digital Detox: Dislike! Studies show your Facebook and Instagram scrolling is actually depressing you. It’s all too common to compare ourselves to the filter-perfect pictures we see. We spend almost 11 hours a day staring at a screen, and it’s not making us any happier. It’s time to step away and spend some time IRL (in real life). Try going from sunrise to sundown without looking at a single screen. Turn your phone off and put it in a drawer. Hide the remote. Instead of mindlessly scrolling or bingeing on Stranger Things, try out the following:

  • read a book

  • clean out your closet

  • leisurely sip a fancy coffee

  • get outside

  • spend some tech-free time with friends

You’ll be surprised how refreshed and relaxed you’ll feel at the end of the day. Even better, set aside an hour or two of screen-free time every night before bed. You’ll sleep better and finally have some time for yourself.


5. Meditate The best way to get to know yourself is to get inside your mind. Contrary to popular belief, meditation is not about silencing your thoughts, but rather learning to sift through them and rise above the noise. Meditation can help you gain a new perspective, manage stress, and even improve your mood. A simple mindfulness practice can help to reduce inflammation and improve some conditions like high blood pressure and chronic pain.


6. Live Your Favorite Day...Everyday!

What does the perfect day look like for you? From waking up to the last thing you do before bed, pamper yourself with a full day of all of your favorite things. Go all out on the foods you love, the movie that makes your heart full, and the hobbies that make you downright gleeful. Today is your day.


7. Take time for pleasure:

You don’t need a partner to benefit from pleasure. Masturbation can help build self-esteem, make it easier to fall asleep, and boost your sex life. Getting to know your body and what you like can make sex with a partner even more enjoyable.


Take Away:

Just like every other kind of love, self-love has to be nurtured. You take care of others all the time, so you shouldn’t feel guilty about taking time for yourself every once in a while. If none of the above ideas interest you, at least try to soak in a relaxing tub, get a massage, or take a yoga class. Buy yourself your favorite bouquet of flowers or dessert. You deserve it!



Many Blessings,

Tammy




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