Frequently, you might have heard or read somewhere that the key to a well-meaningful and fulfilled life is by inculcating the habit of self-love. However, not many know how to go about it. Perhaps, some might have done several things that they thought would give them that extreme euphoria they seek; nevertheless, they end up being disappointed.
Trying always to please others is one way to ensure you keep struggling in life and your life will keep going the circles. Hence, you’d experience low self-esteem, and it won’t be easy to maintain a happy and healthier relationship both with yourself and others. The truth is that it will be hard to love another person when you haven’t mastered the art of self-love. Since you can’t give what you don’t have, embracing self-love is paramount for personal happiness and better life.
Those who have mastered it now live life to the fullest, unleashing their potentials, and are content with everything. Whichever category you might fall into, or perhaps if you haven’t even started, the good news is that it is not yet late to learn how to love yourself. This article is a practical guide that will ensure you master the art of self-love and give insight into different challenges you would encounter in the process and how you can get through them. Read on!
What Does It Mean To Love Yourself?
Self-love is the art of appreciating oneself from different actions influenced by our psychological, spiritual, and physical growth. Anyone who practices self-love is said to have high regard for their happiness and general well-being. Thus, people who love themselves take care of their needs and don’t displease themselves by sacrificing their well-being to please others. Beyond that, it could be settling for less, even when you know you deserve more.
When we are very young, we searched for love outwardly and found it alongside security. We often get physical rewards in appreciation for our good deeds. Still, when we outgrow such a level, we continue to search for love in other people, believing they are the only assurance of true happiness and fulfilled life. However, one thing you must realize is that the love you seek can only be found within. And, that’s why you can’t get enough of that love and true happiness while depending on other people.
At some point in life, you have been hurt by others, even after sacrificing your happiness to please them. Some might have always been constantly limited, discouraged, and disappointed after giving their all. It could be happening in your career, family, workplace, or with friends. To bridge the gap, keep yourself above all the storms, and put your psychological needs in check, you need to embrace the art of self-love. You must learn to embrace your capabilities and love yourself for who you are.
Ways to Practice Self Love and Living a Fulfilling Life
Many could be wondering if it is possible actually to attain self-love and how to achieve it. If these are your current thoughts, you must understand that one of the best things you can do is love yourself. When you realize that self-hate, doubting, and constantly underestimating your potentials might be part of the reasons you haven’t reached your expected goal in life or perhaps attained true happiness, then you will start seeing the need for self-love. There are few tips, which, when followed, will guarantee your true happiness and self-love. They include the following:
1. Don’t Forget Who You Are
Whatever cannot kill you, as they say, will always make you stronger. There’s nothing greater than being yourself at all times. You might have passed through different challenges, complicated situations, and bitter experiences, but you were able to surmount them. However, while undergoing such a phase in life, don’t forget who you are and where you are coming from. You must understand that such situations shouldn’t define who you are, change what you stand for, or your future aspirations. Instead, such challenges might be all it takes to get you where you are supposed to be in life. Therefore, learn to deal with such situations because being positive will always bring positive results.
2. Understand That No One is Perfect
If you dream of a perfect life, relationship, looks, and much more, sorry to disappoint you; perfection does not exist. Instead of seeking perfection in things you can’t control or have, you must understand that you are already perfect in your own way. Sometimes creating all the fantasies about things being perfect contributes to mental health issues because you keep trying to make it happen, but it never does. The best way to keep your thoughts in check is by being content with whatever you have and the level you have attained in life, as it is essential to help you find ways to get to the next level.
3. Show Gratitude
When we are relaxed in our comfort zone, we often take certain aspects of our lives for granted. Showing gratitude is one of the things that can help you focus on the positive side of life, which is essential to happiness. You can start doing this by keeping a gratitude journal, where you can pen down things you are grateful for each day. From daily experiences, health, life, and friends to your job, business, and other achievements or encounters, etc., writing down your daily successes can lift you when you are down and less motivated. Going through the list will help you keep tabs on all the happenings in your life. You’d learn to appreciate yourself and be assured this can guarantee a positive mindset and self-fulfillment.
4. Keep Looking For Ways to Improve Yourself
Fulfillment only comes in doing things that one is passionate about. When you discover your strengths and weaknesses, it helps increase the positive energy that flows from within. And sometimes, when you get immersed in your work and other frivolities, you might get to miss out on developing those great qualities you have inside of you. To achieve this, you must create time to keep learning, reading, and trying out new things until you discover what fits you best. When you discover that great skill you possess, keep practicing them until you master it. By giving it time daily, you may not imagine how happy you’d become because happiness isn’t a switch but a daily practice.
5. Be in Charge of Your Emotion
Feelings are a part of what makes us human, and there is no one without feelings, whether positive or negative. However, the essential thing is how you deal with such feelings, some of which include anger, sadness, depression, excitement, down-spirited, fear, and anxiety. When these feelings play out, and you are not in charge of your emotion, it won’t be easy to manage how they affect your daily life. However, instead of neglecting such feelings, you could learn to manage and deal with them healthily and respectfully. When you master emotional control, you are certainly in charge of your happiness.
6. Embrace Healthy Diet
Healthy eating puts your body and mental health in good shape. If you find yourself eating unhealthy foods, don’t shame yourself or feel so bad. Some people have placed themselves on diets with serious restrictions about what they eat. However, it’s time to remove all those restrictions, improve your eating habit, and you feel happier. Do away with the idea of working to achieve an ideal body type to please others. It’s time to focus on what makes you happy. You don’t need all the weight loss kits, plastic surgery, and other kinds of stuff to be happy. More so, exercise is important as it will help boost one’s hormones, improve health status and increase personal confidence, enhancing self-love.
7. Remove Negative People from Your Life
The people within your circle play a vital role in determining your level of happiness. If you want to practice self-love, staying away from negative people, underachievers, and abusive people is a must-do. Learn to end that abusive relationship, take a break from your dead job, or perhaps find another one that suits you, confront anyone that hurts you emotionally, make the decision to stop alcoholism, stop procrastinating your happiness, and put an end to everything that puts you on edge. It’s time to start making your happiness a priority by surrounding yourself with people that encourage and inspire you. The truth is that when you always make positive affirmations, you will experience a complete turnaround and start living on the positive side of life.
8. Don’t Compare Yourself to Others
Life is not a competition, and in life, everyone wins. But when we start juxtaposing ourselves with others, we end up being unhappy for the rest of our lives. When comparing yourself to others, you often focus on their strengths and what they have achieved in contrast to your weaknesses and underachievements. The more you weigh up yourself with others, the more you’d end up losing yourself and self-confidence. As humans, this feeling may come from time to time, but your ability to overcome it will keep you focused and motivated. Therefore, learn to appreciate yourself for what you have achieved, no matter how little, even when nobody does. This will go a long way to improve self-love and happy life.
9. Minimize Stress And Find Time To Rest
If you are always busy working round the clock, it’s high time you slowed down and allowed your mind and body some rest. When we take proper rest, it has a way of rejuvenating the body and improving our mental health. However, there has been a traditional belief that anyone that rests too much is too lazy, but that’s not true. The relationship you have with yourself is incomparable to any other type of relationship. Therefore, it’s time to start saying no to that extra stress you get from work and trying to please others. It’s time to discover what gives you inner peace and embrace self-love.
10. Seek Help When You Need It
There are people whose egos have led to self-destruction and sadness. When you realize you can’t do something or seem to get past a storm, asking another for help doesn’t imply weakness. There are times when we pass through tough situations and encounter challenges that appear bigger than us. In such situations, rather than feel sad, down-spirited, depressed, and less of ourselves because the solution isn’t forthcoming, we can seek help from those close to us or perhaps from professional counselors. This will help us bounce back in no time.
Possible Difficulties and Challenges You May Face
There are many self-love benefits, including enhanced self-confidence, increase mental capacity, emotional stability, freedom, improved relationships, and personal growth, to mention a few. However, the road to learning the art of self-love may not be that rosy for everyone. While the gains are tremendous, there are also some challenges that one may face. Some of these difficulties, if not tackled, will make it almost impossible to achieve self-love. We are all different but are unique in various ways. Thus, these challenges can be said to be relative to individuals. They include the following:
1. You Find it Difficult Accepting Who You Are: The main reason you find yourself struggling with self-love is that you haven’t accepted who you are. Without self-acceptance, it will be impossible to love yourself. Thus, you could say they work hand in hand. Some people don’t like the reflection of themselves even on the mirror or perhaps their level in life, making it more difficult to attain self-love. To overcome this, you must discover who you are, embrace your true nature, and learn to live life to the fullest.
2. If You Still Care About What People Think: If you seek self-love and fulfilled life, but you are still plagued by what others think, it will be impossible to achieve total happiness. Listening to or considering what others think before you make a decision can lead to an unsatisfying life, lack of purpose, underachievement, and lack of self-confidence. Learn to do things that make you happy without minding what others think.
3. When Your Past Still Hunts You: For you to succeed in learning the art of self-love, you must make peace with yourself. This can only be done when you learn to accept the past, forgive yourself, pick up the lessons from your past mistakes and work on your present to better the future. It would be best if you learned to be grateful for all your past experiences because that’s what molded you to become who you are. If you still hold on to that bitter experience, heartbreak, bad luck, or loss, you may never forgive and love yourself as you should.
4. By Constantly Worrying About What Others Have That You Don’t: Comparison is one reason people fail in life. It could be people showing off their lives on social media or friends trying to prove they have made it. Whichever be the case, you must understand that people only show off their successes on the internet and no one enjoys showcasing their struggles or how they made. If you bury yourself trying to flow new trends because you feel you aren’t measuring up, then it won’t be easy to appreciate yourself and what you have, which will make attaining self-love a herculean task.
Mastering self-love is achievable, and when that is done, you will attain a new state of euphoria in life. Accepting that you are the only one who will stick with yourself through thick and thin will help you realize the need for self-love. To effectively manage, experience, and enjoy a better relationship with others, you must learn to love yourself first. These steps that have been outlined above are a good way to start your journey to attaining self-love.