“You have to love yourself because no amount of love from others is sufficient to fill the yearning that your soul requires from you.” – Dodinsky
We live in a society that bombards us with images and messages that sub-consciously tell us that we’re not good enough.
A constant stream of adverts marketing products and procedures to improve our flaws can make it difficult to find peace with ourselves as we are. Instead, we often focus on everything that is wrong and that does not measure up to society’s ideals of what a woman should look like, as well as how she should act.
When your attention is centred on your imperfections, you do not practice self-love, which in turn makes you feel worse about yourself, creating a continuous cycle of negative self-perception.
Some people are also unfortunate enough to have people in their life that persistently put them down and make them feel inadequate. This can lead to a person believing that they are not worthy of love, and most definitely should not be spending time showing themselves love.
The thing is, none of us are perfect. We come in different shapes, sizes and complexions and we all have skills and talents that are unique to us. We all have to deal with the rollercoaster that is life, and experience our own personal battles and challenges. Therefore, we all deserve to be and feel loved.
February is often thought of as the month of love, so why not take this opportunity to start practicing self-love.
Of course, showing yourself love could be considered self-indulgent by some, maybe even narcissistic. However, people often treat us the way we treat ourselves, so if you want to be treated in a loving way, you must start to embrace all of your imperfections and regularly showering yourself with love.
Acknowledge your qualities daily and be kind to yourself when things don’t work out as planned. Encourage yourself in the same way you would someone you really love and want the best for.
Here are three simple acts of self-love to get you started:
Start a love affair
Think about the happiest and most passionate affair you have had. How much time did you spend with that person? What did you do together? No doubt you spent a lot of quality time together and paid full attention to each other’s needs and desires, as well as getting to know each other’s thoughts and interests and what triggered their different emotional responses.
Take the time to enter a love affair with yourself. We are happy to invest so much time and energy into another person when that spark and connection happens, yet very few of us ever make the same effort getting to know ourselves.
Who doesn’t like a treat? A gift or spontaneous act of kindness is one of the most common ways to show another person how you feel, and it is something you can do for yourself. However, don’t take the easy route and buy that new pair of shoes or bag that you cannot afford, or don’t really need. Instead think about what you would consider extremely thoughtful and touching if someone else did it for you. It could be cooking a really nice meal, writing or reading poetry or a picnic in the park.
Acknowledge your good qualities
When you fall in love, you focus on all the positive traits of the other person. You tell everyone how amazing they are and how great the relationship is. Everything you do, you do from a place of love and your only intention is to make the other person happy and ensure they know exactly how you feel about them. When you talk about them, you tell your friends, family and anyone who will listen about all their good qualities. That’s all you see. You are supportive of them and make sure they know you are there for them whenever they need you. Show yourself the same level of love by congratulating yourself on your accomplishments and allowing yourself to feel proud. Acknowledge your qualities daily and be kind to yourself when things don’t work out as planned. Encourage yourself in the same way you would someone you really love and want the best for.
For more ideas, check out the 4-part series, 28 Simple Acts of Love You Can Give to Yourself.