Self-care isn’t selfish or idealist. It isn’t about comparing yourself to others or showing off. It’s more about belief, acceptance, and accountability for who you are.
Think about the love you have for your other half, your parents, your child or even a friend. That love is unconditional. It’s like no other. You can feel it.
Then let me ask you this - do you love yourself unconditionally?
It’s a deep question, I know. But as much as we like the idea of self-love, we can’t seem to practice it in our own lives. Sure, we’re great at being a shoulder to cry on when a friend needs lifting up, encouraging our other half when they’re going through a really tough time and celebrating big milestones with our loved ones.
But what about your achievements or problems or good times? Don’t they deserve celebrating too?
Self-love is a fundamental factor in building a fulfilling, happy and successful life.
Think about what would change in your life if you started to appreciate yourself a little bit more. Would you carry on feeling guilty about not finishing your to-do list? No. Would you feel bad about messing something up? No. Would you be scared of failure? No.
But the big brick wall that’s up ahead of us at this point has a big sign written on it that says “you’re not good enough.” I want to be better at this. I want to do better at that. We might not think it all the time, but it always seems to be there in the back of our minds.
So when you get to that wall, why not remove ‘not’ and change the phrase to “you’re good enough”.
You. Are. Good. Enough.
Would that be too difficult for you to say?
Would you be able to accept everything about yourself and your life as it is, without feeling the need to change anything?
This is a fairly contradictory thing to say, especially since one thing I live my life is that there’s always room for improvement. And surely there’s nothing wrong with that, right?
Obviously it’s motivating. There’s room to learn more, so you want to learn more and be better. But what happens when you get to another obstacle? What happens when you get to that space between success and failure where you feel like giving up?
If you tell yourself you can’t do something, the likelihood is you won’t do it. You yourself are a barrier. You’re the obstacle you need to get past. It’s like if you don’t like something about your body - your nose, your teeth or the way your feet are shaped. You feel bad about those things so you don’t do anything about them and continue to dislike yourself.
Instead, why not accept those flaws? Why not accept your weird feed, your funny nose or your crooked teeth? What if you loved everything about yourself, including your imperfections? And the characteristics that make you who you are?
Self-love means you’re more likely to be loving towards yourself in various ways - ways that you probably feel guilty for doing right now. You’ll be more likely to give yourself a break, take a long walk in the sunshine, make yourself some delicious healthy meals, tell yourself that you’re good enough.
Change is inevitable. But what you have to decide is whether you’re ready to accept the change in a loving way - so are you?
I’ve always been a loving person. But I’ve also always suffered from a lack of self-belief, especially when I was younger. Here’s what I’ve come to learn about what happens when I learned to love myself a little bit more.
#1 | YOU’LL GET TO KNOW YOURSELF COMPLETELY
Not caring what people think is one of the best feelings ever. Ignoring seeking approval, criticism and security means you’re relying solely on yourself. You should only seek these things from the people you know the most, which include your loved ones and yourself.
Trusting yourself completely means you’ll be able to make decisions more easily, you’ll be happy with them and you’ll be able to carry them out confidently. When you embody self-love, your dreams and goals become a lot more believable.
#2 | YOUR DREAMS BECOME EASIER TO REACH
I’ve just mentioned this point, but it deserves it’s own section because it’s just so true.
If you keep telling yourself you can’t do something, you won’t get very far, because you’ll never achieve it. Believing in yourself entirely means you will have the courage to chase after your dreams, even on the days when you don’t know what you’re doing or why you’re doing it. If you know you’re capable of something, you’ll achieve it.
#3 | SELF-LOVE MEANS TRUE LOVE
It was only when I became truly happy with myself that I found the man I was to spend the rest of my life with. And he’s only strengthened that belief in me. Loving yourself unconditionally means you can love another unconditionally. You’ll have an air about you that is happy, confident and positive - you’ll draw someone in and keep them there. Plus, you’ll also learn to know what isn’t good enough. If you adore yourself, someone else should adore you too.
#4 | YOU CAN ONLY MAKE OTHERS HAPPY WHEN YOU ARE HAPPY
If you’re in a bad mood, how do you expect to make someone happy? You can’t. You might think that if you help someone, you’ll become more positive, but unfortunately it doesn’t work that way. It only works when you’re happy yourself first, because the effect will be even more powerful. Sometimes doing what’s best for you actually works out best for everyone.
#5 | YOU WILL FIND SUCCESS
I’ve read many interviews with successful people, and they all say that in order to get to the top you have to be a little selfish. If you’re someone who’s constantly trying to please everyone while you’re trying to achieve your goals, it’s likely that you may not ever achieve them.
Success means knowing what you want. And if you know what you want (and you’re not afraid to chase it), then you’ll get it - without thinking twice about putting yourself first sometimes to get there.
If you want to live the life you want then you can’t be afraid of standing out.
#6 | THIS IS YOUR LIFE
The things listed here are important, but nothing holds as much importance as this final point. This is your life. You can afford to be selfish sometimes. You can afford to know what you don’t want and create a life full of what you do want. You want to look back at your life with a smile. Do you want to look back and remember that you always put others before yourself?
Or are you going to look back and be proud of where you are right now because you learned to love yourself?
I’d really love to know your thoughts on this in the comments!