Remember how we all were taught in school that the 3 essential things that humans need to survive are: food, housing, and clothing. But what they didn’t teach (or maybe they just forgot) is about the importance of love. It has become such a difficult job for people these days to find true love. They’re on a number of dating sites trying to find the love of their life. They’re so busy finding true love; they don’t even realize there’s actually someone who’s in need of their love, ‘themselves’.
According to a recent poll, most people are sad in life because they’re not in love or a relationship. But I don’t believe that the reason they’re sad is because of their relationship status, but mostly due to the absence of ‘Self-love’ in their life. It doesn’t matter if you’re single or in a relationship, it’s the relationship with yourself that determines the happiness in your life.
So, what’s the meaning of Self-love? Basically, it’s all about how you treat yourself. Self-love means having high respect for your own happiness. It means taking care of your own needs and loving yourself first and not sacrificing your well-being to satisfy others. This is what people are missing to realize nowadays. They don’t have love or respect for themselves, they don’t love themselves first, which is one of the major causes of depression and loneliness.
So, here are a few easy tips for you to learn to love yourself first:
1. Stop comparing yourself to others
When you start comparing other’s strengths to your weaknesses, you’ll never feel good about yourself. Stop beating yourself up for not being good at certain things. For example, I’m very good at writing but playing basketball is not one of my greatest strengths. In other words, I’m lousy at it. So, what do you think would happen if I start comparing myself with LeBron James? That’d not only be irrational but also stupid. So, here’s the trick to avoid this. Whenever I feel like I’m comparing myself to others, I start shifting my focus from something I don’t have to things I DO have. And this not only helps me love myself first but also helps me appreciate things that I’m grateful for in my life.
2. Enjoy solitude
When you think of being in solitude, you might not think about happiness, but rather misery and sadness. That’s where you fail with your negative notion of solitude. Being alone can be a great opportunity to love yourself first. When you’re alone, you can learn to understand and be familiar with things that you didn’t know you had before. You get to know so much about yourself that you’’ start liking those things about yourself. And eventually, you’ll love those things that you weren’t even aware of after enjoying the company of your solitude.
3. Stop obsessing over your physical appearance
We live in a time where the color of our skin and the type of our body determines if we are going to be successful in our life. But who set those standards? Some narcissists who didn’t think everybody deserved to be successful. And does it matter? Absolutely, not! This is one of the main reasons people feel rejected or disappointed with themselves and that prevents them from loving themselves first. They believe that not being beautiful or good-looking makes them less-deserving. But who really knows if you are deserving or not? No one but yourself. So, stop making such a deal about your appearance, because it doesn’t define who you are.
4. Be around positive people
I see lots of people who can’t move forward with their life just because of the kind of people they spend their time with. When you’re friends with people who have a negative effect on your life, who don’t make you feel good about yourself, you’ll always feel bad about yourself. On the contrary, when you surround yourself with positive-minded people, their love and support, you’ll automatically start loving yourself first. This is because the love and support of your friends and family will make you feel you also deserve to be loved.
5. Stay healthy
When you feel good inside, you look good outside. I can’t stress enough about how important it is to maintain your personal health in the process of self-love. Eat healthy and nutritious foods, do exercises, go for a jog, take a yoga class. When you stay healthy, your body will start reacting positively, which will in effect make your mind think positively. You’ll start loving yourself first once you’re healthy, energetic, and full of life.
6. Accept your emotions
The common response of human beings when experiencing an uncomfortable feeling like fear, sadness, disappointment, is to ignore it and take it in a negative way. However, when you do that, when you push away those emotions, you might be making it even worse. Emotions are very vital things that give meaning to our life. Nevertheless, the better way to cope with your negative emotions is to simply accept them. Meaning, you should appreciate your feelings without taking them negatively or try to alter it. Once you learn to accept your emotions, you won’t find it hard to love yourself first.
7. Give yourself a treat
This is one of the best ways to love yourself. You work 24/7, come home all exhausted and fall asleep, then wake up early the next day and repeat the same process every day. We are not robots and we can’t function like them. And amidst all this chaos, we forget to take care of ourselves. Often, we almost forget that we even exist. So give yourself a break. Take a vacation, go someplace you’ve been wanting to go for a long time, meet new people, learn a new culture, and buy things you like. Because you’ve been here a long time and you deserve it.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Who said love yourself first?
John Lennon expanded on the thought when he said, “We need to learn to love ourselves first, in all our glory and our imperfections. If we cannot love ourselves, we cannot fully open to our ability to love others.”
Why should you love yourself first?
When you love yourself first, you make choices that will only improve your quality of life. You eat better and sleep and exercise more because you realize that taking care of your mental and physical well-being is essential to your success.
Is self-love being selfish?
No, self-love is not being selfish. Being selfish means there’s a desire to take from others to their detriment, whereas self-care is about replenishing your resources without depleting someone else’s.
How to love yourself?
Follow these tips to love yourself first:
- Stop comparing yourself to others
- Enjoy solitude
- Stop obsessing over your appearance
- Be around positive people
- Stay healthy
- Accept your emotions
- Give yourself a treat
What happens when you don’t love yourself?
Lack of self-love has a fairly predictable path. You will shrink yourself so much and conform to what someone else wants you to be to such a degree that you wake up one day and have no idea who you really are. At this point, you’ve devolved into a full-blown depression without a clear direction in life.