AD – This post is a paid advertorial and includes gifted items. All thoughts and opinions are my own
Back in 2017, I wrote a blog post called I Hate Myself: A Blog Post On Self Esteem. And although what I was feeling at the time was very much real, it makes me sad to look back on now. Self love has become a huge part of my life over the last few years and it pains me that I allowed myself to spiral so far into a pit of self loathing that I felt the need to write that blog post. But I’m not going to delete it. It’s a vital part of my self love journey. And today I want to share some ways to practice self love that have helped me since that awful post.
Dating website We Love Dates are on a mission. To promote and encourage self love and spreading the message that it’s okay to love and accept yourself for WHOEVER you are. To be comfortable in our own skin, embrace our imperfections and celebrate our uniqueness.
Before I get into my list of ways to practice self love, to aid with this wonderful campaign from welovedates, I was sent a bag of feel-good products to help me on my way to practicing self love and self care. Here’s a peak at what I received:
The first thing that came in the goodie bag and hands down my favourite journal I have EVER had is the “Working On Me For Me” planner. Each double page spread has sections to write down your reflections of the week. Things that made you unhappy, inspirational quotes, learnings from the week and more. As someone who’s hugely into their personal development, I know this planner is going to be a literal God send for me!
And to accompany the planner no doubt, we have this cute set of pencil pens. I know right… what? They’re pens that look like pencils because let’s face it, pencils are cuter. And each one has it’s own little motivational quote on it, such as “YOU GOT THIS!” and “YOU ARE A LEGEND!” and I am HERE FOR IT.
You can’t have a self care night without some gorgeous smelly candles so of course there was a candle in this goodie bag. The “Busy Practicing Self Care” candle in the sparkle bellini scent and it smells absolutely DELIGHTFUL. It’s a proper orange citrus scent – it actually kinda smells like Christmas, which I absolutely love! And I love the jar too.
And finally a small metal water bottle. Because self care means looking after your basic needs too – like staying hydrated. This little bottle will be perfect for me as I’m trying to avoid plastic bottles but the metal bottles I’ve had in the past have been so big that they make my handbag feel like I’m carrying bricks. So this is a neat little size to fit in your bag wherever you go, so you’re never dehydrated.
Now we’ve gone through the fab goodie bag, let’s get into the self love part. So what IS self love?
Self love is having high regard for your own physical, mental, emotional and intellectual well-being. Having respect for yourself. Not neglecting your own needs. And limiting negative self talk.
Of course practicing self love is easier said than done. With limiting beliefs that have been with us from birth, society and the media all playing a vital part of how we see ourselves right now, as adults, self love can be tricky for some people who don’t necessarily believe they deserve it.
Let me tell you a secret…
You do deserve it
So let’s look at some different ways to practice self love which will help you put your well-being first and look after number one. The only person you’re guaranteed to spend the rest of your life with, is you. You might as well start loving yourself:
20 ways to practice self love:
1. Surround yourself with people who embrace your uniqueness, weirdness, quirky, faults and all! (Carl embraces my weirdness and it’s amazing not to feel like you need to hide those silly quirks all the time!)
2. Say no to something you don’t want to do
3. Listen to what your body wants. Is it a healthy meal? Is it a nap?
4. Write down 10 things you like about yourself
5. Switch off from the constant chatter of social media for a whole day
6. Challenge your limiting beliefs and re-write your own story
7. De-clutter your Facebook friends list of anyone that isn’t in your life anymore
8. Journal your honest thoughts and feelings
9. Give yourself a self massage
11. Treat yourself to flowers / a new book / a massage
12. Take yourself on a date and eat anything you want
13. Write a letter to yourself – get honest, go deep and be kind
14. Express yourself in any way that feels good for you (dance, paint, sing)
15. Recognize the toxic relationships in your life (and act accordingly)
16. Celebrate your wins every single day – even the tiniest thing!
17. Find a passion that you don’t want to monetize
18. Make a choice that honors your needs as they arise
19. Show someone else the love and compassion you should show yourself
20. Get comfortable with the most intimate parts of yourself (physical and emotional)
Finally, taking time for yourself to focus on your emotions, struggles and aspirations can be extremely rewarding. Therapy isn’t just for when you’re at your lowest – regular counselling can help you understand yourself, help you navigate life in a more healthy way and help you develop more meaningful relationships for an ultimately happier you. Private counselling really did change my life back in 2018, so don’t hesitate to seek that extra help if you need it.