Self-love is an ongoing practice, a way of being. Develop self-love with these practices:
All the love experts say, "Love Yourself First." HOW?
Self-love is an ongoing practice, a way of being. It consists of actions you can take, and it is a way of honoring yourself. Here are some practices you can do to develop self-love.
1. Express your authentic feelings.
Expressing your feelings authentically is a way of honoring your feelings; a way of saying what I feel matters and is worth expressing. Often we are taught as children that our feelings are not important, or even worse, wrong, and because of that we learn to not trust our feelings. When we express our feelings we are saying that our feelings do matter and begin to regain trust with that part of ourselves. Expressing our emotions authentically is a way of honoring and therefore loving ourselves.
This does not mean your feelings are everything. Feelings are like an ocean wave. When we allow ourselves to feel our feelings and express them it is like the wave crashing onto the shore and then receding. This allows another emotion to reveal itself.
2. Know and enforce your boundaries.
First you must become aware of when you are allowing your boundaries to be crossed. Your emotions are the sign. If you allow someone in close and it feels unsafe, uncomfortable or uneasy then you have allowed him or her to cross your boundary. Become aware of what it feels like when someone crosses your boundaries.
The easiest way to enforce your boundaries once you’ve discovered them is to honor your “No.” Many people are afraid to say no, but when we become comfortable saying no then we can truly honor our “Yes.” Wouldn’t it be great if when you said yes you really meant it and could throw yourself into a situation whole heartedly?
3. Re-fill your cup.
Most of us raised to put everybody before ourselves. This is a recipe to harbor anger and resentment. The goal is to fill your own cup, not just to full, but to overflowing! Then you are service from the saucer - the overflow. What is in your cup is yours and yours alone.
Take time to discover what refuels you and engages your inner child. This will help you create rapport with yourself and will make the previous two steps even easier.
Here is a great article we wrote for our blog in which we give 60 low to no cost ideas for Inner Child Date Ideas
4. Introspect and Journal
Introspection is important in learning to truly know yourself. And by introspection we mean looking deeply at your actions and understanding where they come from. Introspection asks you to be a detective about your behavior and requires that you suspend judgment. Look in the mirror of your self and be honest about who you truly are.
Journaling can be a part of introspection and it can also be a separate practice. It can be helpful first thing in the morning to do an exercise of free writing where you write non-stop for at least 20 minutes. This is a brain drain. When you are done you will find that your mind is much clearer and focused on your tasks throughout the day.
Journaling can also be done at night before bed or anytime you get stuck in a negative emotional state. Journaling when you are stuck in a negative emotion can allow you to find clarity and let go of that feeling.
5. Say nice things to yourself.
Otherwise known as affirmations. When self-love is an issue it is probably because you have a strong negative internal voice. Saying nice things to yourself, even when you don’t believe them yet, can allow you to quiet that negative voice.
During any repetitive action that doesn’t require a lot of brainpower, repeat a mantra or affirmation like:
“I love and approve and accept myself.”
“I am worth loving.”
“There is plenty of love for everyone, including me.”
Doing this while exercising, doing the dishes, brushing your teeth, walking up a few flights of stairs, strolling the aisles at the supermarket, or any other common daily activity will go a long way towards changing that negative internal voice.
Remember, what you are saying to yourself about yourself is key to learning to love yourself. This is your chance to be a good parent to your inner child and tell her how much you love and appreciate her.
Taking daily actions of Self Love will shift your entire life over time. Make the commitment to loving and honoring yourself – if you won’t make the effort or take the time…how could you ever expect that someone else will?