Ten Effective Ways to Love Yourself—and Ways to Treat Yourself Well

Discover ten effective strategies to love yourself and practice self-care in the enlightening article, 'Ten Effective Ways to Love Yourself—and Ways to Treat Yourself Well.

There’s a reason that terms like “self-love,” “self-respect,” and “self-worth” all begin with “self.” No one else has those qualities. ~Unknown.

A night like that has arrived.

I found myself at a lively New York pub, where I promptly began to have a good time. Except even when someone finally posed the question, “So, what do you do?”

A girl full of self-doubt and insecurity replaced my carefree, joyful, and playful self in a matter of seconds.

The reality was that I didn’t know what the heck I was doing! I had just quit my corporate career and was on a quest to find my life’s calling.

That question made me feel very vulnerable and exposed. It was because I had no official title at work. (Except maybe “I don’t know what I’m doing with my life”?) Nothing in the world could “prove” my merit to anyone except myself.

I’ve always had a good sense of self-assurance. If I took on a difficult task, my dad would reward me. I’ll buy you an ice cream if you scale that wall. You can acquire the nail polish you desire if you play Santa for your siblings.

Therefore, I never hesitated to accept opportunities, even those to work overseas, in high-pressure roles, or on particularly ambitious projects. Even when I questioned my abilities, I still said “yes” and figured out a way to make it work.

Until that time in the bar, I had (unwittingly) established my value by means of my accomplishments. I had always considered myself to be someone who could find worth in themselves regardless of their occupation, marital status, or financial situation.

But when I quit my job and other things outside of me broke down, so did my worth. At least, that’s how it seemed at the time.

In a nutshell, I mistook self-assurance for self-respect. Oops!

What I mean is as follows:

Confidence comes from having faith in oneself and one’s talents. You could feel comfortable in the kitchen, on the dance floor, or while talking to a group of people, yet you might be terrified of public speaking or performing in front of a large crowd.

Conversely, self-esteem pertains to one’s perception of oneself. It all comes down to how you value yourself. Do you give yourself love, care, and respect regardless of your circumstances?

It’s easy to fool yourself into thinking you have self-esteem if you’re a high achiever. As long as you try your best, I guess it doesn’t matter.

Until you don’t, I guess. Then the inevitable catastrophe occurs.

The moment I understood that my external circumstances were causing me to see myself as less worthy, cool, and intriguing, I determined that this wasn’t good enough. If this rings true for you, then you shouldn’t settle for it either. It’s been said that when you hit rock bottom, you find your footing again.

Now it was time for me to go to work. This time, instead of establishing my worth, I will adore myself. Here are a few of the more effective methods I’ve found:

1. Prioritize being a loving person first.

To suddenly transform into someone who loves themselves when they currently do not is akin to taking a quantum leap. Self-love is a muscle that has to be worked out regularly, just like any other.

Be someone who loves others instead of adoring themselves. In other words, be an open channel for love as much as possible. Think of the great qualities of the individuals you encounter. The next time you’re in the shop, at a meeting, or having a conversation, try to have an attitude of gratitude. Find as many things as you can to be grateful for and love in order to train your body to respond favorably to pleasant feelings.

2. Consider what it means to be loved and how you would want to be loved.

Self-love comes naturally when everything goes as planned, when we achieve our goals, and when other people like being around us. Not so much when failure, mistakes, or rejection occur. When we’re having the greatest trouble, we’re also the most critical of ourselves.

Consider how someone who cares strongly about you might respond. I mean, what would they say? How would they react? The question is, how would they act? They probably wouldn’t give you a new one or pass judgment on you harshly. They would treat you with sympathy, understanding, and tolerance. If you can’t recall anybody in particular, try picturing how the most loving person in the world would treat you. Then try applying that attitude to yourself.

3. Quit comparing yourself to others.

Self-love is poisoned by the fire of comparison. We tend to be harsh critics when comparing things. Instead, we measure ourselves against other people by contrasting our biggest weaknesses with their greatest strengths. To sum up, your chances of success are nil.

Know that you are the author of your own narrative. Understand that no matter how well you think you know someone, you can never really know how they are feeling or how they see their lives. Instead, invest in growing and strengthening your route.

4. Take small, manageable actions toward your goals.

The ability to want something is a strong one. Therefore, it is a kind of self-respect and self-care to work toward making those goals a reality. Taking action every day is a powerful way to prove your worthiness for the life you want.

Take baby steps on the path that brings you the most happiness, care, and enthusiasm. This shows that you value and appreciate your aspirations, and by extension, yourself. Could there be a more ideal moment than the present?

See also  Soulful Self-Care: Navigating the Path to Self-Love

5. Look to your support group for advice.

Imagine being led by your feelings. When you have positive feelings about yourself, it’s because your thoughts about yourself are congruent with your soul’s or higher self’s perspective. When you have negative feelings about yourself, it’s a warning sign that you need to adjust your outlook.

How do you feel if you tell yourself something like, “I am [something you don’t like about yourself]”? Surely that’s not a good sign. If so, you should reconsider your current line of thinking. Find a more sympathetic word to use instead. The phrase “I’m just so lost and confused” may be substituted with “I’m doing the best I can to move forward.”

6. Connect with positive individuals, and number six will take care of itself.

This is a very big deal, you guys. Jim Rohn once said, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” Consider the present demographics of that group. Do they motivate you, satisfy you, and support you?

You don’t have to keep seeing each other just because you’re buddies. Taking some time apart from a loved one is no guarantee that you and that person will never be close again. Don’t throw your time away on everyone who asks for it; instead, be selective. (It’s not polite to do that for either of you.) Only go if you really want to; if not, don’t.

7. Show kindness even when chaos ensues.

When we need to be kind to ourselves the most, so many of us (myself included) wind up becoming our own worst critics. When we make a mistake or are rejected, we tend to feel even worse about ourselves. Is it just to strike a person who is prone on the floor? Not at all.

Instead, make the conscious decision to be the most kind and forgiving to yourself if your plans go through. When you lose your footing and fall. When words fail you and come out incorrect. When plans fall through or when others reject you. Consider what it is you need, and spritz that all over you.

8. Put in place some good routines.

Yeah, sure! Get serious about self-care and reflect it in your diet, workout routine, and leisure activities. Engage in activities not to “get them done” or because you “have to,” but because you want to.

Feeling no desire to work out today? Then, maybe listen to a calming podcast while going for a stroll. Develop good mental as well as emotional routines.

9. Put off worrying and negative thinking until later.

Ready for a fantastic recommendation? Assuming that’s the case, you should be thrilled. The “worry-free month” is a term I made up that describes a method I just found. Consider how much benefit you’re getting from your worrying. Yes, some anxiety serves a function by serving as a nudge in the right direction when we need to pull ourselves together and take decisive action.

But I would wager that ninety-seven percent of it is pointless. If you find yourself having these ideas, just remind yourself, “Thanks, but I’ll deal with this next month.” You may lessen the power of negative ideas by not giving them any more fuel and by telling your mind that you’ll deal with them later (and specifying when). Then, continue doing this on a monthly basis.

10. Give up trying to adore everything.

For me, this is essentially the game-changer of all time. The truth is that it’s far simpler to accept the parts of yourself that you like than the parts that you don’t. Instead of trying to find love in those areas, which would likely lead to the thought, “Are you kidding me?”, try to find acceptance instead.

The fact that I can become quite scared for no apparent reason is something I’ve struggled to understand about myself. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by even the simplest of tasks, like grocery shopping. I’m telling myself to accept this anxious part of myself rather than attempt to change it or love it less. I tell myself things like, “It’s alright; I can feel apprehensive going to the shop today. Not all is lost.

To cultivate self-love, you need to accept yourself as you are rather than try to change anything about who you are. Consider this an opportunity to practice acceptance the next time something occurs that makes you want to beat yourself up.

Love yourself before you can love others.

There are always highs and lows in life. Wellness may be a contagious illness. The opposite of success is failure. Even the warmest of feelings may become frigid over time. But despite external challenges, we can always rely on the rock-solid foundation of self-love.

Today, self-love is not a nice-to-have; it’s a must for survival. So get started with some of the techniques mentioned above, and most importantly, be kind to yourself when you fail. If you fall down, get yourself up and try again. The old adage goes that practice makes perfect.

Take care of yourself, because when you do, you’ll be better able to take care of the world. The consequences of your choices extend far and wide.

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