Be Your Own Valentine This Year By Practicing Self-Love
It’s that time of year again! Love hearts everywhere, pink and red heart-shaped everything can be found in virtually every storefront. Valentine's Day is all about love, which includes self-love. After all, the most important relationship you'll ever have is with yourself. Learn more about self-love and check out a couple of ideas on how you can put yourself first this Valentine's Day (and any day thereafter).
Self-love is defined as a state of appreciation for oneself that grows from actions that support our physical, psychological, and spiritual growth. Self-love means having a high regard for your well-being and happiness. The journey of self-love lasts a lifetime and can always be worked on.
Since everyone's perception of self-love is different, we've gathered a few ideas of what self-love could look like for you, no matter where you are on the journey.
- Do something that empowers you! On a self-love day (or any ordinary day), it is a great idea to focus on doing things that make you feel great about yourself.
- Break up with social media. It doesn't have to be a permanent break up but social media often pushes the highlight reel of everyone's life and we get caught up in thinking our lives are not up to par. Taking a break from social media will also allow you to turn inward and focus more on yourself vs. what everyone else in the world on social media is doing. Bonus points- it wins back a few hours you normally spend scrolling to try some of the other ideas below.
- Don’t compare yourself to others. Tying in nicely to our previous suggestion, put on the blinders and focus on YOU. We’re socialized to be competitive, so comparing ourselves to others comes naturally. However, there’s just no point in comparing yourself to anyone else on the planet because there’s only one of you. Instead, focus on yourself and your journey. The mindset shift alone will help you feel free and continue to push you toward your happiness.
- Practice self-acceptance. Oftentimes, we get caught up in what's wrong with us or what we don’t do well and it sits with us as we constantly draw on it. To feel good about yourself, you must forgive yourself for past mistakes, appreciate yourself for who you are, and enjoy the person that you are becoming.
- Prioritize self-care. When you love yourself more, you end up taking better care of yourself. People who are nourishing themselves with self-love regularly tend to have healthy habits because of the love they have for themselves. Prioritize doing things you care about and best serve you, not because you “have to" but because you want to.
- Creating healthy habits. Similar to the point above, healthy habits are absolutely an act of self-love. Starting to truly care for yourself can come in the form of being conscious of what goes into your body, how you move your body, prioritizing sleep, managing your stress better, and what you spend time doing.
- Stop letting others’ opinions affect you. You can’t make everyone happy, it's a sad truth. Just like not everyone likes kale or ice cream sundaes, not everyone is going to like you, and that’s totally okay. Focusing too much on gaining approval from others will only slow you down on your journey to being the best version of yourself.
- Allow yourself to make mistakes. When we were little, we’d get told, “nobody’s perfect; everyone makes mistakes.” However, as the years pass, the pressure to never fail and chase perfection seems to take hold. The truth is mistakes are what you learn from and grow from the most. Embrace your past and take the learnings while letting everything else go. You’re constantly changing and growing from who you once were into who you are today and who you will be in the future. So, ignore that voice in your head that says you need to be perfect. Make mistakes — lots of them! The lessons you’ll learn along the way will be priceless.