5 Courageous Acts Of Self-Love
You can boost your life with self-love. Self-love is defined as the active practice of accepting, caring for, and encouraging oneself. It is a solo journey with the ultimate goal of being able to appreciate you for who you are and who you are not, without judgment and filled with compassion. Self-love is not selfish or a form of entitlement, nor is it arrogant or sinful. Instead, it requires the courage to reflect on where you are, where you’ve been, and where you ultimately want to be. As women, we tend to love and nurture everyone (else) in our lives. We need to include ourselves in our loving awesomeness.
Self-love is the number one requirement to create the life of your dreams.
The lack of self-love directly correlates to a lack of self-worth. If you don’t believe you are worthy of (insert desired goal), then no matter how hard you work, you may not achieve your goal. Our thoughts create our results, and so if you think you’re not worthy, then the results in your life are a reflection of your lack of self-worth. You can’t out-hustle a negative mindset.
Here are five core self-love principles that will help to improve your self-perception and your quality of life. It may only be five principles, but each one is important to deeply dive in. Put your heart and soul into it. These aren't to be addressed and checked off just once, but repeatedly returned to throughout life in order to stay attuned to yourself and the many iterations you'll travel through.
1Self-Awareness takes courage.
Self-awareness is the ability to recognize your own thoughts, feelings, and actions as if you’re an observer outside your body. Self-awareness helps you understand who you are, how you influence the world, and how the world influences you. In order to do this, it’s important to lean into courage and spend time learning about yourself. This includes what excites you, what you find fun, what you find annoying, what you find hurtful, what your goals are, your dreams, and even your fears. Self-awareness is the first step of this type of exploration.
2Self-Care means caring for yourself as much as you do for your family.
Self-care is a holistic process that includes a wide variety of tasks tailored to your individual needs. Self-care is multidimensional, and comprises physical, creative, spiritual, social, and personal wellness domains. I encourage my clients to spend time pulling together their self-care toolkit for each of these. For example, a physical domain self-care toolkit could include things like running, yoga, going for a walk, or dancing. For each of these domains, put together a list by asking yourself, “What do I enjoy doing? What actually lights me up?”
3Self-Esteem means to love yourself without judgement.
Self-esteem is how you view yourself. They’re the sentences you say to yourself and about yourself, consciously and unconsciously. It is how you think, feel, and act based on your assessment of yourself. As you improve your self-esteem, you will automatically improve your self-worth and confidence, and start to take action toward your goals. I encourage my clients to first understand their self-esteem baseline by setting a three-minute timer and writing down all of their automatic thoughts about themselves (positive and negative). Then I have them assess their positive-to-negative thought ratio. I then have them increase their positive thoughts by reflecting on their achievements, abilities, and successes. Spend some time thinking about what you are proud of, what you have accomplished, what people can count on you for, and what your strengths are.
4Self-Compassion means don’t bully yourself.
Self-compassion is the ability to show yourself love, kindness, concern, and empathy, without judgment. I encourage you to ask yourself: How compassionate are you with yourself? Do you bully yourself, or do you treat yourself as a friend? Consider the characteristics of a bully. What are some things you may have said in the past to bully yourself? In order to transform your relationship from bullying to friendship, what promise do you need to make to yourself? How would you treat yourself differently if you treated yourself as your own best friend?
5Self-Respect is your honesty and dignity.
Self-respect is the empowered ability to advocate for oneself. It is a feeling that you are behaving with honor and dignity. But in order to respect yourself, you have to know not only what you believe in, but what you firmly represent. These are defined as your core values. For each of your core values, it’s important to understand why it’s important to you, how you will uphold this value, and what happens if someone crosses a personal boundary. Setting and keeping personal boundaries is the second part of maintaining your self-respect. The more you follow through on your commitment to keeping your boundaries, the more you will respect yourself.