Loving yourself is an idea that for some can feel like a foreign concept; especially in a society that praises modesty and our need to focus on others… it sometimes seems like loving yourself is a selfish act. It really isn’t though. I mean, how can you fully love and care for others if you don’t love yourself?
Loving yourself entails a combination of things including kindness and respect for ourselves, self-acceptance, and self-awareness. Loving yourself means that you know that you are worthy of self-respect and gentleness, compassion and nurturance. If you need some guidance in learning to love yourself, know that it takes practice, but you can do it.
Don’t be a perfectionist– that means you need to learn to accept yourself and your work even if it is less than perfect. If you are always pursuing perfectionism within yourself and your activities this can and will create disappointment and negative feelings… because nobody is perfect nor can anybody create perfection 100% of the time (perfection is perception)! If you find yourself being hard on yourself and trying to be perfect, you need to change current way about thinking about perfection and instead focus on the effort behind a task. By focusing on the amount of effort you have used you can better appreciate your own work.
Discard negative thoughts and beliefs about yourself– it can be difficult letting go of negative thoughts, beliefs, and perceptions that they have about themselves. These negative thoughts are toxic and often come from other people who have given you that opinion. It is a difficult thing to do, but you need to let go of any negative though or believe that you have about yourself.
Change your names and words! Don’t be confused… I’m not saying to change your name. What I mean by this is, if you have a tendency to call yourself names or belittle yourself – change it. If you belittle yourself by calling yourself bad names reduces yourself from a human to a negative non-person. Calling yourself an “idiot”, “stupid”, a “failure” are untrue and unfair names. Think about why out are feeling that way and turn it into a positive. E.g. Say you are taking an exam and you miss a few questions or get them wrong, don’t tell yourself “I’m so stupid” or “I am such an idiot”, instead think what could I do differently when studying, what do I need to improve on, and how can I change my strategy.
Also try calling yourself positive names. Tell yourself “Hello Beautiful” in the mirror, congratulate yourself when you do something to be proud of.
Change that worst will happen mentality. It is too easy (especially for people who are a little more prone to anxiety), to fall into the assumption that the worst outcome will always happen with every situation… but if you think about most outcomes, they are rarely as bad as you expect.Changing your inner thoughts to be less negative and anxious can be difficult, but it can also help you to circumvent the generalisation or exaggeration that makes you feel precarious.
Pick something you love. Every day choose something about yourself that you love and write it down in a journal. At the end of each day read your ever growing list of things that you love about yourself as a reminder. Eventually this will become second nature, and you will remember the things that you love about yourself.
And please treat yourself to something indulgent, something fun, go for a ride, a walk a swim, do something fun. I also like Atlanta, go there and enjoy it, I have great friends there.