No matter where I went, she followed me. If I changed jobs, found new friends and relationships, or relocated to a new state or country entirely, there she was! Despite my best efforts and all my pleading for space, she was my constant companion, staring back at me in the mirror.
I used to be impatient with her, frustrated, and even outright mean. But it still wasn’t enough to send her away.
Once I realized she was in it for the long haul, I decided to befriend her. To stop talking badly about her to others and putting her down out loud and in my mind, and started to treat her with a little kindness.
After that, we became fast friends! It’s like this tension that existed between us was immediately transmuted into this beautiful symbiotic relationship of love and support.
And that’s when I realized the value of self love.
Sometimes it may be hard to realize it, but one of the most important people in your life is you. You are the one constant throughout this whole experience. No matter how bad you may sometimes want to get away from you, you will always be there. So why not show yourself some love?
What is self love?
Self love is taking the time to appreciate you. It’s going for a walk and feeling the sun, the breeze, and experiencing your senses as they interact with the environment. It’s lighting a few candles and enjoying a glass of wine and some soft music. Self love is taking a long bubble bath. It’s about taking the time to enjoy doing the things you like. It’s realizing that love can never be truly shared with others if you don’t share it with yourself first.
Here are some ways to start cultivating a better relationship between yourself and you.
Stop caring what other people think about you
It’s not selfish to care for yourself. The people in your life will come and go. As will their opinions. The person whose voice really matters is YOURS. Do things that make you feel good about you. How you feel about yourself will ultimately determine the quality of your life.
Don’t let anyone make you feel bad for living your life
It’s your life to live and you only get one shot at it. Don’t let people make you feel guilty for doing things your way. If you answer only to your heart and your deepest internal wisdom, you’ll be able to honestly say looking back on your life “I have no regrets because I did what I felt was best”
Show the world what you deserve
If you treat yourself poorly, others will start to do the same. Set the standard by caring for yourself, valuing how you feel, and doing what makes you happy. If you can’t get what you need emotionally from the world around you, practice giving it to yourself.
Love doesn’t always come from others
In the same way that you can’t always make everyone happy, you can’t make people love you. The world around you is largely a reflection of your inner space. Become good at generating a sense of self love and acceptance and see how the things in your environment begin to open up.
Take time for you
Find time to spend with yourself. Whether it’s meditating, hiking, or simply sitting down to watch one of your favorite movies, disconnecting from others can be a great way to rediscover yourself. Enjoy being alone.
Why you may not always like yourself, you are stuck with yourself. You may as well try getting the most you can from the relationship. Instead of seeking fulfillment in others, try being kinder to yourself and see what it is you may have been missing out on.