This is How You Love Yourself


how to love yourself in 5 easy steps

You can’t love anyone until you learn to love yourself first. 

I used to think this was a myth because I felt like I had no shortage of love for the people around me, despite having next to zero love for myself. 

It took me years to understand that love–like most things in life–is a journey and not a destination. You don’t just wake up one day and instantly have it. Instead, self-love is something that is built over time, a constant, never-ending process that you can choose to participate in during the small moments that make up each day. 

So even though I may not have felt like I loved myself, there were moments that I did.

The following tips are things that I have learned that helped me build a more solid foundation of love for myself by intentionally incorporating them into my daily life, and I’m hoping they might work for you too.

1. Find what brings you joy

What brings you joy? When do you feel most at ease and content? If you’ve never asked yourself these questions before, start–and then start paying attention to what the answers might be. Relate these questions to quests of health too: what types of movement bring you joy? Dancing? Walking? Hiking? How can you breathe and eat in ways that bring you joy?

Start to cultivate an awareness of the things that invite more joy and presence into your life so you know what to do more of. This is a good time to start a journaling practice, especially ones that allow you to make note of how you’re feeling.

2. Define your needs / values

As you start to become aware of the things that bring you joy, you might recognize certain patterns emerging in your preferences. These patterns are your needs and/or values in life. The things that are most important to you are the essence of you. So start taking note of what’s important to you and finding ways to bring more intentionality to how you spend your time and energy. 

the things that are most important to you are the essence of you

3. Put it all into practice

Don’t tell yourself you’ll do it later or tomorrow or next week, next month, next year, etc… This is the time to stop making excuses. Make your self-care a priority and do the things that you know you need to be your happiest, truest self. Do you need to spend time with people you love to feel cared for? Schedule it. Do you need to spend time alone to feel fulfilled? Pencil in that time for yourself and don’t let anything disrupt it. Put your needs, values, and preferences into practice. 

This also relates to your health as well. Take care of your body. Make time to move, to breathe, to eat something more than whatever you can scarf down the fastest. And when you do, make sure you’re moving, breathing, and eating in ways that bring you the most joy and contribute to your values.

4. Set clear boundaries

Don’t be afraid to say no. This one, I know all too well, is easier said than done, but it’s incredibly important. When you get specific and clear about how you will spend your time and energy, you stop letting unnecessary things get in the way. You take control over your own life, and claim the empowerment of yourself. Sure, life is always going to have times when it gets in the way. Nothing can ever be entirely predictable, but having a clear plan and boundaries in place will ensure that no time is spent wasted on things that are within your control to avoid. Don’t let your power be spent on anything that doesn’t aid your most authentic self.

5. Surround yourself with people who love you for you

We become the people we spend the most time with—whether we realize it or not. So it’s important that the people we spend our time and energy on are the people who will love us for who we are, who demonstrate and give us the kind of love we should be giving to ourselves. It’s not always easy to know how to love yourself, but when you have a circle of people who show you how to love yourself, you will naturally start to treat yourself with that love as well. The voices of your loved ones will become the loving voice inside your head. 

just like any other kind of love, loving yourself requires you to show up and give yourself kindness, grace, and acceptance for where you're at in any given moment

Loving yourself is a process, a choice we make daily. Just like any kind of love, it requires that we show up and make the choice to give ourselves kindness, grace, and acceptance for where we’re at in any given moment. Give yourself the love you’ve always wanted, and watch how much more willing you are to show up in your life–for better and for worse.

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Which of these steps do you struggle with the most? Do you have any other tips / steps you would recommend?

I'd love to hear!

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