Issue: 2016-03-03, PHOTO: kozzi.com
I know that self-love is important, but why is it so hard for me to practice it all the time? I often tend to put others before me and have negative thoughts about myself when situations get hard. How can I remember to use self-love more often?
Self-love is misunderstood by a lot of people and these misconceptions often stay in our thoughts. Many people perceive self-love as the same as being selfish or self-centered; they believe it is negative.
Self-love is not negative; it is a necessity to be able to love others. Consider this quote from researcher and author Brené Brown: “You cannot love someone else more than you love yourself.”
This would mean that you cannot love your child, your partner, your parents, your friends, more that you love yourself.
With love comes acceptance. The more you accept yourself fully, the more you love yourself – by accepting your body fully; your hair, your nose, your hips, your chest; by accepting your past, your choices, by accepting the fact that you don’t have control over everything.
Accepting is about being constructive. By learning from your past and thinking about your future – but not worrying about it – you are taking the negative and positive and moving forward. By accepting and embracing fully who you truly are will bring you closer to loving yourself.
Here are some tricks on how to remember to practice self-love.
- It’s all about small steps. Think of it as accepting, embracing and loving yourself more often.
- Write a list of all of the things that you love about yourself. Notice the things that are not on that list. Write those down on a separate list without judgment. Shining a light on the things you don’t accept about yourself will give you awareness of what to work on.
- Read great books (or listen to audio books) like: Gifts of Imperfection by Brené Brown or Mastery of Love by Don Miguel Ruiz
- Talk to close friends and family members about self-love. The more we talk about it, the more we remember.
- Change your passwords to words that give you strength.
- Put quotes like “I can only love others as much as I love myself” somewhere visible, for example in your room, washroom, at work.
Have fun with these tricks and I would love to hear your comments/questions about this article.