How To Love Yourself
Caption: Photo: Woman Who Is Thinking
When learning about how to love yourself you will need to create a list of the things that you like about yourself. This list is what you will to use as the foundation to accept who you are at this very moment. With this guide you will learn how to reduce negative interactions in your lifestyle including bad thinking patterns, it will let you confront your bad past and forgive yourself. You will then learn how to do something every day for yourself but you will need to be open to change and be honest with yourself.
Make A List Of What You Love About Yourself
It is a good idea to start off bymaking a list of what you really love about yourself both mentally and physically.
Personal character is an important aspect in our daily lives, we use it when we interact and communicate with other people. Some questions you may want to ask yourself which impact your personal characteristics may include:
- Do you think you are an ethical person?
- Do you feel you have an attitude which positively impacts you and the people around you?
- Does your religion positively impact your sexual lifestyle?
- Are you a spiritual person?
People’s physical appearance changes throughout their time depending on their diet and physical fitness. Physical appearance is an important aspect which impacts a person’s self-confidence.
Take a piece of paper and write down what you like about your physical body. To do this, you can start by performing a body scan. Begin the scan at the very top of your head and work your way down to your feet. Some questions you may want to consider when analysing your face may include:
- Do you like your skin tone, hair colour or eye colour?
- Do you like the shape of your face?
- Do you like your freckles, wrinkles, birth marks, scars or other features which makes you unique?
Some questions you may want to consider when analysing your body may include:
- Do you like your body structure?
- Do you like how toned your body is?
- Do you like your height?
- Do you like your posture?
Accept What Is
In order to be happy with yourself, you need to begin by accepting who you are.
The truth is, there is over 7.422 billion people in the whole world, that is a lot of people! There are just so many people in the world who you are able to compare yourself to. There will always be someone bigger, stronger or faster unless you are a Guinness World Record Holder and have an official award for being the best of the best.
Your judgement on the way you feel about your personal character and how you physically look is impacted by how you’ve been raised, your peer group, what is advertised in the media, what religion you follow and your culture. If you do not follow a particular standard you will feel like you will always have something to improve.
There is a famous poem known as the Serenity Prayer by American theologian Reinhold Niebuhr which is used by the Alcoholic’s Anonymous Groups which says “Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; the courage to change the things I can; and have the wisdom to know the difference”. There are multiple versions of this poem but they all have the same meaning.
Its meaning translates so that people are reminded to use courage and wisdom when they are making important decisions, they are two personality traits highly valued within society. Courage is the term that is used for someone who is actively facing their struggles or fears, someone who is in the ring fighting for what they are able to improve and change within their lives. Whilst wisdom is the knowledge and good judgement to do what is best. We use our courage and wisdom to impact our lives in a positive manner. For example, if we have eaten an unhealthy diet, we research how to improve our diet and then take the steps needed to become eat healthier.
Caption: Photo: Woman Holding Hands In Heart Shape
Don’t Worry About What Others Think
There are certain things in our life that we can’t change like traumas or bad experiences, there are aspects of our personalities which can remain ingrained and you cannot change how another person thinks about you. If you are always worried about what another person thinks and you are trying to change your interactions with them to suit their personality you in effect are not being true to who you are. You cannot change how another person thinks and we also have no right to know what another person thinks.
Sometimes a person disliking you can be as simple as they may not like someone with your name, your age, gender, religion, sexuality, race/ethnicity, education or maybe they just get a bad vibe from you without any reason at all. If a person’s judgements of you is petty and is not based upon any factual evidence, reason or actual experience, it is considered to be a type of prejudice. This means someone has formed a bias opinion of you. They may change how they interact with you by avoiding interactions or negatively communicate with you with passive aggressive undertones. Although we live in a modern multicultural society a lot of these thinking patterns have shifts to more positive views of acceptance.
It is often considered that what other people think of another person, can appear as reflections of their own values, belief systems and experiences. In a sense, what they think about you will openly show you who they are, what they think of you isn’t actually about you but is about them.
Remove Negatives From Your Life
If you keep on doing the same things and interacting with the same people, you will find that you will experience a repetitive pattern. Though if you are continuously finding yourself in negative situations you have to find what you are doing and change it.
Reduce Negative Interactions
- Reduce The Amount Of Toxic People You Interact With: You may find yourself being brought down by an individual who will make you feel bad about your actions or personality to make themselves feel better about who they are. You may feel like your actions are made with reason and knowledge, you should consider breaking contact with the person. If they haven’t stopped bringing you down after you have let them know how you feel about the way they speak to you, it is reasonable to believe that they may not change and will continued to interact with you in the same way. If you find that the toxic person is a family member, you are able to reduce the amount of time you spend with them and ensure that when you see them, you have other people around you to support your interactions.
- Create and Implement Boundaries: Boundaries are important within all types of relationships whether it is a romantic attachment, a family member or at work. If someone has overstepped a boundary you are able to let them know that they have with a statement which clearly tells them why and how. For example, if someone has asked about your personal relationship you can say something which is clear and concise like “I keep the details of my romantic relationship private.”
- Develop Rapport And Friendships With Positive People: If you are finding that you do not have a lot of positive people in your life, take a step out of your comfort zone and begin searching for new friendships and relationships. With the development of modern technology there are websites which are dedicated for people to find others who likeminded are. For example, you can find community events in your local newspaper, you can join a meetup group or you can join a local club.
Caption: Photo: Man Meditating In Garden
Stop Bad Thinking Patterns
- Stop Thinking About The What Ifs: People who are living in the past often remind themselves what they could have done to change or improve the situation. They may say “What if I had done this?” or “What if I didn’t do that?”. This makes a person focus on living in the past rather than living in the moment. They are not actively engaged how they can improve their current lifestyle but instead are invested in something which may have not went to plan. If you change the question to “What can I do to improve my current situation?” You will be able to come up with healthier alternatives which you are able to work on.
- Learn How To Meditate: There are different types of ways to meditate. Meditation can bring you back to the present moment and allow you to experience what is happening around you. To begin meditating, you can download an application like “Headspace: Guided Mediation” or you can listen to free meditation guides on YouTube. Some people invest time in learning Taoist sexual practices that incorporates yoga and qigong.
- Do More Of What You Enjoy: You may be thinking to yourself “I wish I played tennis more” or “I wish I saw my family more”. If you find yourself wishing you did more things which you enjoyed like a hobby or interest you will naturally be able to feel more positive about how you are living your life as your time is going to something which you find of value. If you find that people in your relationships do not want to participate in your hobby, you should try doing it by yourself! Although it can be scary at first, you are doing the one thing that you love or you can join your local club who will do the hobby with you.
- Sex Improves Wellbeing: Engaging in healthy sex can help improve wellbeing. It boosts mood and immune system. It also acts as a natural stress reliever.
Getting Stuck In The Negatives:
Change Your Environment
- Move Apartments Or Houses: If you find that your neighbourhood does not reflect the way you wish to live or negatively impacts your mental health, when you have the means to move apartment or houses you are able to choose a new community which may give you a healthier and more optimistic outlook to your life.
- Change Jobs: If you are struggling with being stagnant in your job or find other aspects of your job draining, you are able to search for a new company that may better suit your work ethics.
- Become An Active Member Of The Community: It can be as simple as opening up the local newspaper and reading up on volunteering jobs that are currently available. They may need someone to drive elderly people to the shops to help them buy groceries or maybe they need people to volunteer at a fun run. You are also able to donate blood which will save lives! Find a community service activity which suits your interests which will allow you to feel part of the society that is around you.
Confront Your Bad Past & Forgive Yourself
The past can follow us like a monster that is under the bed. Everyone has a past, people make mistakes and it is a part of being human. Mistakes provide the building blocks of self-improvement because they can be the reasons why you gain the motivation to become a better person. We in turn are our own worst critic, which means we can talk so negatively towards ourselves that we can be our worst own enemy.
Maybe you have hurt a person who you have loved by not being there for them when they needed it the most, maybe you have made a choice which at the time you thought you were doing something positive but it impacted people negatively. The thing which you have down has had a negative impact on someone’s life and you have done your best to help solve the situation. If you feel like you have done your best and there is nothing else that you can do to make the situation better, you need to let your bad past go and begin the process of forgiving yourself.
They often say that people need to understand the bad and the good. With the knowledge that people are able to do both, it is ultimately the choice of making a positive decisions and doing something which impacts your personal lifestyle for the better. A good example of this is a locksmith who understands how to pick open a lock. This knowledge allows the locksmith to open a door without damaging the construction. The locksmith has the ability to open up the doors to people’s homes without their knowledge and has the option to steal their belongings. But rather than doing something which is illegal the locksmith uses his or her ability to become an expert in their field, with the knowledge they are able to earn a living which he or she will use to build a life.
To confront your bad past, it is recommended to talk to a mental health professional like a psychologist or psychiatrist who can talk you through the process and help you develop behaviour and coping skills which will help you learn to rebuild your life.
Do Something Every Day For Yourself
You don’t need to do something grandiose every day, like replacing your entire wardrobe or going on a fabulous holiday to the Bahamas. Take life a day at a time and a moment at a time. Doing something every day for yourself can be as simple as:
- Taking Time To Look At The Small Things: When you are walking down the road, through the office or when you’re at home take a moment to notice something which you may often overlook. For example, when we go for a walk we can take the opportunity to look at the sky, notice the colour, take note of how quick the clouds are moving and what shapes they are. When you are in a park, watch the flow of the wind touching the grass or the happy face of a dog on his or her walk. Sometimes our busy lifestyles make us forget that we are often surrounded by things which can bring much more positivity into our life.
- Smile More: There is science behind why smiling impacts our mental health positively. Smiling releases natural chemicals into our brains like neuropeptides which help to relieve daily stress. When we smile we receive neurotransmitters like dopamine, endorphins (a natural pain killer) and serotonin which help to lower people’s blood pressure.
- Give Yourself Some Personal Time: Set a side sometime each day which allows you some personal time away from people and social media. You don’t have to have an agenda or a reason why you need some alone time. During this time you are able to think about the things that you would like to get from your life.Sometimes people enjoy taking a long shower which will allow your muscles to unwind.
- Learn New Information Or Skills: Read a book, do some educational exercises and feed your brain with a wealth of knowledge. It will keep your brain active and also give you new information to talk about with people you will met.
- Develop A Routine: Get prepared for the day ahead, plan what you would like to do and set aside what you would like to wear. This way when you wake up in the morning you have your day scheduled. This means you have begun your day on a positive note which will set the rest of the day with a good start. Routine reduces anxiety, it builds confidence that you know what you are doing and other people know what you are doing.
Caption: Photo: Embrace Change Written On Beach
Be Open To Change
Change is inevitable, it always happens. Trends come and go, people become wiser and more mature and there is new technology being developed on a daily basis. If we did not have change we would not be able to work efficiently as a society and we would still have harsh laws.
- Understand That Changes Is A Naturally Occurring Process: Change happens. If it weren’t for change the human race would not have made cars or invented forks, knives and spoons to use for eating. Change is a part of our history and culture.
- Change Means Things Are Able To Improve: Change means that we are able to progress and advance as a human race for a better future. It provides people with the opportunity to work together as a community.
- Change Can Be Unknown: Change provides people with a new life experience. Although the experience may be new at first it will feel more normal over time.
- Change Can Transform People: Change can provide a new out look towards life. It can be just what they need to motivate and inspire to enhance their lifestyle choices.
- Change Can Give Your More Choices: Change may mean you have more time to do things you love or give you new ways to finish an activity.
- The Adjustment To Change Can Time Take: Accepting change can take some time to process and it doesn’t always happen overnight. It might not be something you are comfortable with straight away.
Be Honest With Yourself
You should look at self-evaluation as a tool which will help you solve problems within your life. If we cannot openly face the true reality of a situation of who we are, we are overlooking a crucial aspect of self-improvement which does not allow us the opportunity to change anything within our lifestyle. When you think of anything which is negative you should also say to yourself, “How can I improve the things that I don’t like about myself?”
You should talk to yourself how you would a close friend. We often don’t realise that the we treat ourselves and the way we self-talk to ourselves is so negative, we often don’t stop to think, would we talk to a friend like that? You should ask yourself “If we wouldn’t talk to a friend like that, why are we talking to ourselves like that?” When we speak to ourselves we should talk with self-compassion and kindness.
When you are performing a self-evaluation you should begin with a small aspect of your life this way the exercise does not become too overwhelming. If you do an overall self-evaluation you should list heading for the different topics that you would like to change and work through a topic at a time. Do not overwhelm yourself with too many changes, you can progress as slowly as you need to. People make progress differently to others so if you find that others progress quicker than you are, don’t be worried.
You will need to define what you would like to work towards:
- How should you be spending your time?
- What is your short term goal?
- What is your long term goal?
- What can you do to actively work towards these goals?
These goals will give you something which will motivate and inspire you.