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How to love yourself

Woman with cropped hair looks over her shoulder and at camera. Group of people in background appear to be sitting in a circle on chairs.
“If you have the ability to love, love yourself first” , Charles Bukowski.

WHAT IS SELF-LOVE?

Self-love is an appreciation of yourself for who you are. It means you show yourself the same kindness and respect as you’d show anyone else who you love. It encompasses not only how you treat yourself but also your thoughts about yourself, your internal dialogue and forgiveness of yourself for any mistakes or weakness.

Why is self-love important?

Studies have shown that we need self-love in order to get motivated and take on new challenges. It’s empowering and has positive impacts on stress, resilience, self-efficacy and relationships.

When you love yourself, you take care of your wellbeing and happiness. You’ll prioritise your physical and emotional needs, making for a healthier way of being.

Loving yourself doesn’t make you selfish or unkind to others, in fact it’s quite the opposite. It makes you less vulnerable to people-pleasing and mistreatment and helps you put in place the boundaries that set you up for the healthiest of relationships.

How mindfulness can enhance your relationships
"Loving yourself doesn’t make you selfish or unkind to others, in fact it’s quite the opposite. It makes you less vulnerable to people-pleasing and mistreatment and helps you put in place the boundaries that set you up for the healthiest of relationships."

How to practice self-love

If you’re wondering how to fall in love with yourself, you’ll be pleased to hear it’s quite easy. There are many ways to practice your self-love, but here are a few tips to get you started:

1. Get to know yourself

Take some time alone to have a think about who you really are. If you were meeting yourself for the first time, what would you want to know? Ask yourself what’s important to you, what you love doing, what are your most attractive qualities. It might help to write your answers down.

2. Begin loving actions

Each day, think of something loving you can do for yourself. This could be as simple as telling yourself to take a 10-minute break with a book or buying yourself a beautiful bunch of flowers.

3. Practice self-care

Look after your physical and emotional needs by eating nourishing foods, staying active and keeping good sleep hygiene. This will help you feel good about yourself and, in turn, love yourself more.

Self care is the gift you deserve
"Look after your physical and emotional needs by eating nourishing foods, staying active and keeping good sleep hygiene. This will help you feel good about yourself and, in turn, love yourself more."
4. Be mindful

It’s so easy to be caught up in the business of day-to-day life that we rush every activity in order to get on to the next. Being mindful helps us focus on how we’re thinking and feeling and, therefore, what we need.

5. Treat yourself as you’d treat the person you love the most

When you find yourself being negative about yourself, think of what you’d say to comfort a best friend or partner. Be kind, compassionate and patient and before you know it, self-love will become second nature.

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