How To Love Yourself CompletelyHowever the affirmation “I am perfect the way I am” can lead to problems. It’s common to use positive thinking as a way to spiritually bypass our own deeper issues. At the start of our spiritual journey of self-love, it’s all too easy to be ensnared by the external comparisons we make between ourselves and others who have perhaps advanced more on the spiritual path.
For example, "I only did well on that test because it was so easy." Once you've identified troubling situations, pay attention to your thoughts about them. This includes what you tell yourself (self-talk) and your interpretation of what the situation means. Your thoughts and beliefs might be positive, negative or neutral. They might be rational, based on reason or facts, or irrational, based on false ideas. Changing your view of yourself may take some time and effort, but over time you can learn to better see and appreciate yourself for who you are.
Yet, many of us don’t know where to start on the long journey of starting to love ourselves, truly from the inside out. Fortunately, self-compassion is a learnable trait—and the payoffs are well worth the effort of building this skill into our daily routine. Pushing yourself with physical exercises can not only increase your mental strength and improve your mood, but also boost your self-esteem.
If a friend is in trouble our first instinct is rarely to tell them that they are fundamentally a shithead and a failure. If a friend complains that their partner isn’t very warm to them, we don’t tell them they’re getting what they deserve. We try to reassure them that they are essentially likeable and that it’s worth investigating what might be done. In friendship, we know instinctively how to deploy strategies of wisdom and consolation that we stubbornly refuse to apply to ourselves. Heather Lonczak holds a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology with a focus on Positive Youth Development. She has published numerous articles aimed at reducing health disparities and promoting positive psychosocial youth outcomes (e.g., academic achievement, cultural identity, mindfulness and belief in the future).
Everyone is human and no one is perfect, everyone has insecurities and that makes us who we are. Loving yourself truly comes with facing what you may hate most about yourself. Maybe it is a body-part or multiple body-parts, or the way you treated someone, or guilt or shame about a situation. The thing is, until you can really shine a light on your insecurities, you will never be truly accepting of yourself. The problem is, while we spend time comparing ourselves to external sources we are somehow looking to either be more like them, or looking for approval from others. Forgiving ourselves from a place of love and not of war, makes us more resilient and encourages us to try again, only this time with more positivity.
Our goals are on hold, our plans for summer may be cancelled, but our inner work can still continue. It’s hard to see growth when we are in the middle of it, but this uncomfortable period of time will eventually end. When we look back on this time, we’ll remember the kindness and stillness we created in our hearts. When moments of self-doubt creep in, you want to flood them with love.
Recognizing your bad habits and looking for ways to change those into positive habits is the first step to leading a more healthy, productive life. If you make a bad habit of practicing any of the things we mentioned or more, try slowly implementing changes. With this understanding, we can say that self-love is also about how we talk ourselves into moving from negative to positive in our feelings for ourselves. And from negative to positive in how we choose to experience life. At face value, it may feel like you have lost a lot during treatment.
As we love ourselves more, it allows us to set better boundaries about how we spend our time, how we let others treat us, and how we treat ourselves. There are some aspects of my body, emotions, and life that I don’t always like. I love my future self, the person I am becoming, and the human being right now who is lovable just because she exists. These things may be in the form of eating healthy, exercising or having healthy relationships. You express your love for yourself by doing things that help you to show up in life as the best version of you. No one has a better understanding of your innermost thoughts and needs than you do.
We don't accept that what we do is good enough. If we think, "It's not really any good," "It's not perfect," or "I can't do it well enough," we miss the chance to build self-esteem. The things you say to yourself play a big part in how you natural feel about yourself. Thinking, "I'm such a loser" or "I'll never make friends," hurts your self-esteem. Once you make your list of answers, you can choose to focus on one, two or as many as you can, and see how your happiness increases.
Research shows that our self-esteem rises the moment we stop being so hard on ourselves. Self-acceptance is all about embracing our positive and negative facets. This means that self-acceptance is unconditional. Recognizing and accepting your limitations or weaknesses should not interfere with your ability to accept yourself fully. We usually set standards that are too high for ourselves because the society expects us to be perfect.
Instructions are simple; the reader simply fills in the blank in a series of 20 statements. This exercise is a loving way for individuals to practice self-love and self-kindness that will benefit them throughout their lives. This exercise promotes self-love by having individuals write love letters to themselves that emphasize their most valued attributes. The first step is to identify the top eight qualities they love most about themselves. Think about someone who is confident… How do they act?
You have been able to transform your daily experience by applying care and uplifting sentiments to this part of you that is simply afraid. You have softened and are not holding yourself with such rigidity. Although you are nervous walking into the interview, you know that you will be able to show up for yourself afterward if things don’t go well. You know that ultimately getting the job or not has no relation to your value and worth as a person. At worst you will have to deal with some disappointment and try again. We are all needing to be this unconditionally loving presence for ourselves.
If you notice this, try to pinpoint the cause, and move forward in a forgiving way that encourages positivity. A huge part of your self care journey is learning to engage in positive self-talk. Self-talk is the inner dialogue we have running through our heads most hours of the day. Self-talk is normally something that we do unconsciously and it is often indicative of our subconscious thoughts and feelings. Sometimes our self-talk can be very negative, leading to feelings of self-doubt, self-judgement and even self-loathing.
No more giving in to your inner-critic; no more listening to that voice telling you that you’re not good enough; no more settling for less than you deserve. Self-love empowers you to make healthy decisions that serve you in the highest good. For the stoics and skeptics, I implore you to set aside whatever resistance you may be feeling right now. And give this one a shot with an open mind and heart. But Kamal’s most transformative experience has been the simple act of learning how to love himself. You don’t have to be a super-mom, a fitness model or a billionaire to be worthy of love.