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The love of one’s self is by far the greatest gift a person can give. It is the total acceptance of your flaws and shortcomings! I mean “no one is perfect” is a very popular saying, but no one seems to understand that. Many times our zeal to be different and stand out forces us to make irrational decisions that rob us of our beautiful individuality. Here we will look at 9 tips on how to love yourself unconditionally so you can life your life freely.
We often seek validation and this has cost us our peace. Now, bear in mind that we all make such mistakes, and it is never too late to realize how amazing we as individuals are. We live in an age where we are more aware of our differences than ever. It is an amazing thing if you ask me, but then, there are external forces (not the ones you do 40 days fasting for, thank you) that demand we act in a specific way, or follow a specific trend.
Many of us are not comfortable with that and we always seek to rebel, which causes us to make certain decisions that may make us sad in the end. That anxiety we feel after such a decision is totally normal, we need mistakes to grow to the best versions of us. For us to even love ourselves we must first come to realise certain truths.
Firstly, life is mostly about how we react to circumstances and not the circumstances themselves. Also, we should always keep in mind that our past mistakes do not determine our future. Once we can handle these realities, well, we are on our way to a Utopian state of mind where we always put our peace of mind first, and peace is truly attached to self-love.
By the end of this article, dear friend, I really want you to go out there (okay maybe not literally, stay safe at home) with a new mindset, a new perspective, one that works for you and brings you peace of mind. Here are 9 ways to practice self-love!
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1. Accept your flaws
You, sweetheart, are a sum total of past experiences that may break another person, but here you are sitting down as if the tsunami of your past was nothing but a light summer drizzle! You are a sum total of rough edges, and let me tell you, that makes you the most beautiful soul.
Accepting that there are areas we are not so good at hurts sometimes, yes it does. But this pain is only fickle compared to the peace that comes after it. When you see this, you will be so willing to seek out the things that might seem like flaws and embrace them.
2. Own your decisions
Many times we are coerced into making decisions that are not so favourable for us in order to please people. This should not be so, you always come first.
So before making any decision, ask yourself; will this hurt me in the long run? If the answer is yes, then you should ask; is it going to be worth it? If the answer is no, then Bye Felicia! Do not be sorry when you make decisions that will bring you peace. You. Come. First.
3. Avoid toxic people
In our lives, there are always those who see the negatives. Yes, it’s good to be realistic but these people, they take it a step further. They have a problem for every solution. Now, it is not entirely sensitive to call them out, because they have allowed their life experiences to make them what they are.
They decided not to change. As much as you should be a good human being, you do not owe it to them so much that you allow the degradation of your mental space. Keep them at arm’s length and understand that they should have no power over you.
4. Always be with those who uplift you
There are those among us who want to see us thrive, as much as there are those who do not see how we deserve the good things that happen to us.
Well, the truth is, they don’t matter. The ones who matter are those who bring out the best in us. You know them, they are your happy places. Always try to be around them. And always try to be their happy place too, because we owe it to those who make us happy to also make them happy in return.
5. Always do the things that make you happy
When you have free time, you should undertake tasks you used to love but because of tight schedules, you haven’t had time for them. These activities will bring back happy memories which will show you how to love yourself.
They could range from merely sitting back with a glass of your favourite wine and listening to music, to going on a hike through the forest. It could be spending the weekend with someone you love, or even learning how to make a new dish. No matter what it is (as long as it is legal LOL), as long as it makes you happy, you should always do it.
6. Forgive yourself
Do not live with the hate of yourself over wrong decisions which led to wrong actions. Instead, you should apologize for your misdeeds to those it hurt.
By accepting your faults where they lie, by trying to make it up to the parties involved and then forgiving yourself, it will teach you how to love yourself more. I assure you, your peace will reign after this. It might be hard especially when, in the process, you lost those you cared for, but by changing to a better person, one way or the other, they will come to forgive you.
7. Believe in yourself
You are a mass of potential and I am pretty sure that you haven’t realised one-tenth of the vast potential that resides in you.
Your abilities surpass what you feel is your limit, and the beautiful thing about your limit is that it can be pushed. You were made to adapt to whatever situation you are placed in, that is just who you are, awesome to the last codon of your DNA.
Learn that you are different and live that way, seek to help others and be kind to others. That way, you will see how to love yourself more. That thing you have been avoiding for the fear of uncertainty should not stop you now, you need to accept whatever the result brings. That is living with courage.
8. Be Kind
As you now see the way to love yourself, you must start to reflect it outwards. The world needs you to live by example and it will follow suit. This can be achieved by showing care to those who have no one, by speaking up for those who do not have a voice of their own, the weak and neglected.
You being their voice, and caring for their well-being will show them that there are still good people in the world. It will infuse them with new hope, a renewed strength for facing the days ahead. And you? You will be expecting nothing in return. That is the unconditional love that comes with learning how to love yourself.
9. Know the boundaries of your sphere
In stoicism there is a principle that goes like this: Know the things you have control over and the things you do not.
Marcus Aurelius, one of the pillars of this school of philosophy, was born in a period where the plague itself was named after him. The Antonine Plague almost broke the entire Roman Empire, a feat not even achievable by the most sophisticated of armies. And yet, he kept his kingdom in one piece, and actually died from natural causes.
One peculiar thing about Marcus was that he didn’t blame the time, he focused on how to keep his people alive. He was of the opinion that the world seeming like it was falling apart could have happened to anyone, but thankfully it didn’t because they would have been broken, and he was not. He understood very well the things he could control, the dispensing of resources to his people, being the beacon of hope and their strength. But he also understood that the infection was beyond his control and did not feel weak for not being able to curb it.
In this day and age, we need to understand this concept because we are constantly under pressure to pick up responsibilities, and as such, we blame ourselves when things get out of hand. This should not be the case. There goes a prayer along the lines, “Lord give me the courage to change things that I can and to accept the things that I cannot.”
We should always understand the boundaries and not blame ourselves when we fail to have solutions. As we grow, so does the boundary of things we can control expand. But what if our lives are riddled with things that are beyond our control, you might wonder? Well, my advice is to let life happen. We really have no control over the cards we are dealt, but instead we have absolute control over our reaction to them.
Now that you know how to love yourself, you must also understand that there is a borderline, and a pretty thin one at that, between self-love and pride. We must learn to identify that borderline and never cross it. Many people mistake the ugly side of too much pride (I like to think that we should have a certain level of pride after all) with self-love—a very terrible error. Like I said, pride is good, but there is an ancient saying that goes “all is poison depending on the dosage” and this is very applicable to pride.
We are also meant to teach what we have learned and make the world a happier place one person at a time. A bulk of the world’s problems can be solved if we all can truly love ourselves and seek no validation from external sources. Try and reach out to those who are lacking the self-love you have learned, keep them close and be there for them.
Sooner or later, they will see reasons why they are the best versions of themselves and why they are just perfect regardless of their scars and the past.
Also, try not to speak negatively of people, words should be used for healing. They are instruments of peace. Although some people seem to derive joy from using words to inflict pain on others, don’t join them. No, rather you should point out how their words are causing pain to others. If they persist, do not judge them for their ignorance, it is not really their fault, as they allowed their circumstances to mold them terribly.
Work On Loving Yourself
We are all on this planet with something—a destiny. We have goals which in turn contribute to that destiny, like small milestones leading up to the grand trophy. So, celebrate your small victories. And understand that you are doing your best just like everyone else is. You are so strong, therefore don’t let anything weigh you down.
Yes, it is hard in a world that does not seem to give us breathing space. But remember, it’s the reaction that counts.
Once you realize that you are a mini god of your reaction to events, it becomes a strength and a weapon in your daily struggles, which in the end, you are bound to triumph over.
I like to identify with the very words of Marcus Aurelius, “As long it is achievable by man, I too can do it.”
So yes, you have the ability to do what seems impossible to you (again as long as it is not illegal, forget all you saw in Money Heist). As from today, always give yourself that treat (in moderation of course), that meal, that outfit, you deserve it, you earned it.
You might also want to read about:
- 12 Real Tips On How To Develop A Positive Mindset
- 30 Cheap Self Care Ideas For A Bad Day
- 10 Tips On How To Have An Abundance Mindset
- 15 Tips On How To Wake Up Earlier And Not Feel Tired
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