Self love and self acceptance are difficult concepts. Especially in the day that we’re living in right now, where Lady Gaga can’t even have a kick butt halftime performance at the Super Bowl without people going on and on about her “fat” (because the people making the harsh comments would look a quarter as good as she did in the same outfit?!). Sometimes you need to take some time to love yourself. I’ve found some of the best ways to go about loving yourself and compiled them here for us all to use!
1. Make lists.
Write down the things that you don’t like about yourself. Whether it be a physical things, or something about your personality. Literally anything about yourself. If you don’t like it, write it. The catch is that for everyone one negative you write down, you’ve got to write down two good things about you. This may seem kind of pointless, but I’ve actually personally done this a few things. It’s really sometimes hard to find the things to equal out the negatives, but it really makes you self reflect, and the end result is a really positive experience.
2. Surround yourself with the right company.
Find the friends that are going to pump up your selfies on Instagram. The ones that tell you that you’re going to do great things with your life. Not that you want people that are going to say you look like a 10 when you haven’t showered in 4 days, you don’t need fake. You need supportive. Find your people, and stick with them. Be the friend you want to have.
3. Stop comparing.
This is pretty self explanatory. Stop comparing yourself to magazines, celebrities, friends, neighbors, cousins, anyone or anything you may compare yourself to, just stop. If we were all meant to be the same, we would all be the same. Since we’re not all the same, embrace the differences, and refer to number 1.
4. Learn to let go.
Whether it was a bad breakup that left you with words of hatred in your heart, someone giving you a dirty look as you pass them on the sidewalk, something that happened in class, let it go. Learn from how it makes you feel in that moment, but don’t hold on. The longer you let something eat at you, the worse and worse you’re going to feel. Take a deep breath, and find what is going to help you move on. If you just need time, or you need to write something down and tear it to shreds, whatever you need to do or try, go for it.
5. Embrace your differences.
So what if you don’t like the same music as everyone else, or your style is one all your own. Take advantage of the things that set you apart, and use them to propel you forward. In job interviews, show your potential employer that your difference can be beneficial to everyone involved. Entertain your friends with your special quirk. Encourage them to love their differences, too.
6. Find calm time in every day.
Take whatever amount of time you can, whether it be 10 minutes or 2 hours, and just do something that helps you find a calm place. Don’t say you’re too busy to take time for yourself, because you need to make you a priority. Watch Netflix, scroll through twitter, take a nap, or just stare at the ceiling. Go for a walk, eat a snack, call your mom. Just do something to help you relax and care about yourself for a little while.
7. Be patient. Be persistent.
Changes are not going to happen overnight. You have to give yourself a chance to get to the place you want to be. When you aren’t seeing or feeling a difference RIGHT away, keep pushing. Don’t give up on yourself. If you don’t have enough patience for yourself, where are you going to get in life?
8. Start saying no.
If you’re swamped with a whole bunch of everything, don’t feel obligated to agree to every favor your asked to do.
If you don’t want to hang out with someone because you’re just not feeling it, say no.
If you don’t feel comfortable in a situation, say no.
Stop being afraid of hurting other people and start being afraid of hurting yourself.
9. Don’t hold things against yourself.
Screw up, learn from it, move on. Simple, really. Don’t live in the past and don’t dwell on something that happened ages ago, or even something that happened yesterday. This is definitely easier said than done, but once you start working on letting things go, it gets a lot easier.
10. Have fun.
Simple. Do things that make you happy. Watch Netflix or go out with friends. Host a party or go explore the mall. Whatever you consider to be fun, just do it.
Loving yourself is important because you can’t truly learn how to be loved until you can know what it is you want. Take time and work up to a place where you can look in the mirror and say, confidently, “Wow, I really love this person that I am.” It takes time. It’s something I personally am really working on and really striving for right now. The more patient you are with yourself, the easier it’s going to be.
Be brave, be bold, be strong.