It’s a mantra that everyone can attest to but is often difficult to implement: putting yourself first. We find ourselves so engrossed in prioritising everyone else that time and again we are at the bottom of our own to do list. It can be a struggle to do and as with most habits takes practice, so with that we set about finding the most useful techniques for implementing self-love, self-care and making oneself a priority in this funny old thing we call life.
The key to love is happiness and so it is central to self-love. We don’t mean an unobtainable everlasting happiness, because no matter how much love we are filled with life has a habit of taking over. We mean the kind of happiness that equates to a sense of self, a quiet confidence, that despite and in spite of all that is going on in our world that we are deserving of the love that we seek to give.
To exude self-love is to be open and honest; to know and accept who you are. To love oneself is to demonstrate respect for oneself, appreciate your place in the world, and to recognise that you have purpose. Being able to love yourself equips you with the depth and emotional maturity to give to others and have greater fulfilment in doing so.
We’ve set out some steps for your journey of self-discovery, self-care and ultimately, self-love.
Set your boundaries and protect your peace
You need to set aside the time to get to know yourself. What is it you like to do? What brings you joy? What creates peace in this hectic world? Once you have the time to address these questions, consider the things that disrupt your peace, the things and or people that cause you to move the goalposts in respect to your boundaries. When we can recognise what it is that motivates us and what is stifling us, we are able to set boundaries for others to adhere to. Protecting your peace is paramount to your happiness.
Days, weeks and months can go by without us recognising the good that we do in the world. The big and the small, the earth shattering and the mundane, our place in the world and the things that we do day in and day out has an effect on those around us. List your successes and achievements, whether it’s daily, weekly or monthly, be able to look back on what you have done in appreciation and gratitude.
It takes time to change your thought pattern and to change elements of your life that have once proved difficult. Be kind to yourself, acknowledging that things take time. Patience is a virtue.
No-one is perfect is obvious enough but it something that we only seem to apply to others. We tend to forgive on a regular basis but have a hard time applying the same rationale to ourselves. You, like others, are human, are imperfect and finally, deserving of your own forgiveness. You have to spend the rest of your life with yourself, do it without a grudge against her, she is changing and evolving every day.
Take care of your body
Your body is your temple, quite literally. Take the time to worship yourself inside and out: your nutrition, exercise routine and skincare regime will be integral to how you navigate the world. If you take care of yourself in these respects, you are much more likely to have a confidence in and about yourself.