February has arrived and as you all know, it is the month of love. This month, we will be focusing on this topic, starting off with learning to love yourself. Self-love is just as important as loving another person, if not more. In order to show love to one another, we must be able to show love to ourselves first.
WHAT IS SELF LOVE?
It is a state of appreciation for oneself that grows from actions that support our physical, psychological and spiritual growth. It means being aware of your own well-being and happiness. It is taking care of your own needs and not sacrificing your well-being to please others. Most importantly, self-love means not settling for less than you deserve. Self-love can look different to many people as we all have different ways of taking care of ourselves. It is important for your mental health that you figure out what self-love means and what it looks like to you as an individual.
WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
Self-love, as some studies have shown, is the key to mental well-being and keeping anxiety and depression at bay. We all like to spread love, but the question we should be asking is do we produce enough for ourselves? We cannot always expect to rely on external sources for love and that is where the concept of self-love comes in. Someone who practices self-love will never need to depend on others to be happy and it is an empowering feeling to be happy within oneself. Self-love is not being selfish, it is putting yourself first and not being too tough on yourself. So next time you hear that little voice in your head telling you that you are not good enough or that you cannot afford to make mistakes, ignore it! The first step to achieving self-love is realising that we are only human and it is okay to make mistakes.
BENEFITS OF SELF-LOVE
There are many benefits to loving oneself. You experience greater life satisfaction, it can give us a more positive attitude towards life. It encourages us to pick up good habits, meaning taking care of our mind, body and soul. Learning to love yourself also reduces stress, lessens procrastination and makes you more focused at work. Another important benefit of self-love is better mental health. When you love yourself, you are less likely to suffer from anxiety or depression. It also paves the way to a positive mindset which is an essential ingredient for success in life and for mental wellbeing. People who love themselves often refrain from doing things that will have an impact on their peace. Once you start loving yourself, you will realise that it is perfectly fine to put your needs above others and to do things by yourself, like taking a walk or reading a book in the park.
HOW TO PRACTICE SELF-LOVE
Practicing self-love is not a difficult task, it just takes practice and needs consistency. For starters, you can start each day by telling yourself something positive. It can be how good you look, how well you did on a certain task, anything that will make you smile and feel good about yourself. Fuel your body with healthy foods and drinks that nourishes it and get exercise! Surround yourself with people who love and encourage you. Let them remind you just how amazing you are. Stop comparing yourself to others, you are a unique individual, embrace and love the things that make you different. If you are in any toxic relationships, end them immediately! Any person that makes you feel less than awesome does not deserve to be a part of your life. Celebrate your wins no matter how big or small they might be. Give yourself credit and be proud of what you have achieved. Learn to say no, this does not make you mean or selfish, it just means you know where your boundaries lie. Forgive yourself, you can not change the things you have done in the past but you can control your future. Look at it as a learning experience and believe in your ability to change. Give up on the need for approval from others. You will not always be everyone’s cup of tea because not everyone enjoys tea! Find your happy place and go to that place when you are going through hard times, or imagine yourself being there. Let go of past trauma and wounds. This one is easier said than done and it may be one of those times you need to turn to others for support. The truth is though, when we let go of things that have happened to us it is almost like a weight has been lifted off our shoulders. We do not have to carry that around with us anymore. We deserve better. Lastly, be patient but persistent. Self-love is ever evolving, it is something that needs to be practiced daily but can take a lifetime to master. So be kind and support yourself through the hard times.
Love yourself as much as you love your family and friends, strive to love yourself and to make yourself happy. Self-love is the key to happiness and a person who is happy is in a far better position to achieve success in every aspect of life.
If you have been working overtime lately and need a bit of a break, why not contact WanderfullySo for a customized virtual experience? Or better yet, if you want to travel to Cape Town, you can book a free Concierge Session with us! Whichever you choose, we guarantee you it will be a relaxing and happy experience.