We must love ourselves in order to give love to others.
To the degree that we love people is to the degree that we can actually love ourselves.
Here are 10 things you can apply to your own life to help you love yourself
1. Positive Self Talk:
The way we think influences the way we live. When we choose to think positive about ourselves we are prophesying to our future. We should not be surprised when we feel like a failure and the words we rehearse in our heads have to do with being a failure at life. Psychologist Aaron Beck realized the power of your words and developed what we know today as cognitive psychology which can be simplified as changing negative thought patterns. A simple way of applying this to your life is in the form of declarations which consist of identity statements that determine the way one wants to live.
2. Surround Yourself With Friends That Champion You
The people that we choose to hang out with are the people that influence us. When we go through trials and storms, it is important to have friends that champion you. Fly with the eagles and keep looking upward meaning surround yourself with people who are going in the direction that you are going. Allowing people to influence you that are not going the way you are going is simply low level living. It is not worth your time for you are called to a higher standard
3. Work Hard, Play Hard
It is important to know what you like. Some of us have gotten so good at working that we fail to take care of ourselves. Knowing what you like will help you maintain a healthy balance between working hard and playing hard. We should know what we like to do, if we don’t than we are working too hard and forgetting to enjoy life. It is pretty hard to love myself if I don’t know what I like doing
A great way to express how you feel regardless of emotion is to write it out in a journal where you can be free flowing with your words and learn to get out your frustrations. This median come in many forms such as writing a letter to yourself where you write about what you feel about a situation that happened processing your frustration in a healthy way. It’s great to ask questions and try to answer them in your thoughts when one is writing things out.
Recently, I am discovering the importance of being still. Stillness re calibrates your primary focus. There are times in life when we face storms and I believe it is important that choosing to go away for a bit from the busyness of life and choosing to be still processing will give us a clearer or different perspective on situations at hand.
6. Don’t Sweat the Small Things
Loving Yourself is living a life of excellence and not perfectionism. You have heard the phrase of don’t turn a molehill into a mountain implying that we have rehearsed in our head a problem and magnified it bigger than what it has to be. Small things are not worth your time and energy. Everyone makes mistakes; its the beauty of being human.
Jason Vallotton, author of Emotional Prosperity: A Guide To Counselling talks about that we tend to cope when there is a need that we have that is unmet. It’s important to be self aware of our basic needs such as eating, drinking enough water and sleeping. Our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit and its important for us to steward what the Lord has given us. Life seems tougher when we hardly eat or are operating on little sleep. We will feel more healthy and operate more efficiently in our routine activities when are basic needs are met. Stewarding our bodies is a form of treating ourselves
8. It’s Okay Not to be Okay
One of the revelations that I learned a year ago is that it’s okay not to be okay. It’s in our human psyche sometimes to try and fix things that don’t look or feel good. It’s important to put our trust in the Lord at these times and allow Him to guide us through the storm.
9. Self Compassion
In my own life, I have been great at encouraging and championing others but been a real critic towards myself. When loving yourself it’s important to give yourself lots of grace. In the past I tend to demand perfectionism from myself for fear of rejection from people and measuring my self worth. The Lord told me one day that ‘I had to start believing in myself before others believed in me’. I did not need to seek out approval from others for I am amazing in Gods eyes. If God loves us than we can love ourselves as well.
10. Embrace What You Feel
Wherever you are on your loving yourself journey, choose to embrace your feelings. We don’t live by what we feel but it’s important to acknowledge what we feel. Our feelings are valid but don’t control us. It’s important to keep in touch with our heart and validate our feelings for doing so will increase our emotional intelligence and prevent us from feeling numb from painful and difficult experiences.