How to Love Yourself

February – the month of love!

A time for celebrating romance with roses and champagne… or is it? The reality is that, for many of us, it is a time of feeling unloved and rejected – longing for that perfect relationship and that perfect romantic partner so that we can feel cherished and secure.We search for love “out there” – our “other half” to  make us feel whole – often going through one relationship after another or staying in a dysfunctional one rather than the fearful aspect of facing life on our own. We search outside of ourselves to fill the emptiness inside -  seldom looking within for support and happiness.

Our relationship with ourself and self love is the core of living a fullfilling and joyful life and is often the most neglected. We work on relationships with partners, family and friends but seldom with ourselves. We learn at an early age to don masks to hide the parts of ourselves which we have learned not to like and which we fear will prevent us from being accepted.We measure our sense of self worth by our perceived perceptions of how others see us. We are setting ourselves up for failure if we allow the rest of the world to determine how we see ourselves.

Learning to love ourselves empowers us to create the life we want and to experience joy and peace. Every relationship in our life will reflect this loving relationship. Once we learn to love ourselves we are capable of being loved and of loving others.

How do we begin to create this self love?

  1. Get to know yourself better : embark on a journey of personal growth to get to know yourself and to discover your authentic inner being. This can be a very challenging but extremely rewarding task. Re–visit your past to establish the origins of your negative self talk and find ways to disarm your  inner critic.
  2. Self nurture : discover what makes you truly happy – it could be listening to your favourite music, reading, a bubble bath… Treat yourself by indulging in a little of this each day.
  3. Journal : buy a journal, decorate it and commit yourself to writing a couple of pages in it every morning. Let it be an uncensored account of your thoughts and feelings.
  4. Take yourself on a date : delight yourself by doing something just for you – something self indulgent and extravagant. Rediscover what you love doing.
  5. Forgive yourself : mistakes happen – forgive yourself and move on.
  6. Be kind to yourself : become your own best friend and treat yourself as such. Develop compassion and understanding.
  7. Remove your masks : accept yourself for who you are. Celebrate your uniqueness and live for yourself without fear of what others may think.
  8. Avoid the inner critic : pause regularly and observe the voice in your head – your inner critic. Question it and most of the time you will find that it does not tell the truth. Learn to speak kindly to yourself.

Make this your year of self discovery – find your authentic self, remove your masks and learn to accept and love yourself for who you are. Your relationship with yourself is the most important relationship you’ll ever have.

 

“You can search throughout the entire universe for someone who is more deserving of your love and affection than you are yourself, and that person is not to be found anywhere. You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe deserve your love and affection.”  

– Buddha

 

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