19 Ways to Love Yourself More in 2019
If only loving yourself was easy...
With society constantly making us feel like we have to look a certain way or act a certain way, we become incredibly insecure about the parts of ourselves that do not align with the perfection standards we see in the media.
It also doesn’t help that perfection is reinforced on social media where individuals can post the best moments of their life or follow celebrities and influencers to have a look into their “perfect” lives. This leads to internalized beliefs that you are less than, or that you need to make a change in who you are to be worthy.
When the New Year approaches, you begin to feel hopeful that the changes you want to see in yourself will come to fruition with some new year’s resolutions. These resolutions usually focus on losing weight, exercising more, or “getting healthy”. What most people fail to ever think about is, “What is your relationship with yourself?”, “What if this was the year you focused on improving your relationship with yourself?”, or “What does loving yourself mean?”
You can think of building the relationship with yourself the same way you think of developing a romantic relationship. In the beginning of the relationship you cannot say you love this person because you don’t know enough about them. It usually takes work and effort to get to know them on a deep enough level to call it “love”. Once you reach love in a relationship, you can accept parts of this person that are not perfect because you understand them.
In this guide to loving yourself, steps 1-10 will focus on you getting to know yourself and steps 11-19 will provide you with ways to take the relationship you have with yourself to the next level. Take it one step at a time. Read through the article, pick a few ways that sound exciting to you and try them out. Favorite this article and look back to it when you are ready for more.
1. Start with acceptance. Accept parts of yourself that are not perfect.
It is possible to teach yourself radical acceptance. This requires time and practice to completely let go of having everything you want at any given moment by accepting what happened in your past and by accepting what is happening in the current moment. Through acceptance you will become more compassionate with yourself and to others.
Below is a video on radical acceptance:
2. Be vulnerable.
When you allow yourself to be vulnerable you are able to feel more comfortable with opening up about parts you feel shameful of. Vulnerability plays a very important role in forgiving yourself for anything you can no longer control. Blaming yourself or feeling shameful does not serve you well when you are working on loving yourself more.
Here is a Ted Talk of Brene Brown explaining how to champion vulnerability and shame:
3. Start a journal.
Give your journal a title like, “My self-love journey” or write down what you hope to achieve by keeping a journal. Giving your journal a title or by identifying your intention for journaling, you create a structure around what you can write about each day. Some people keep a journal to write down whatever they are feeling while others prefer to answer to a journal prompt. Check out our instagram, @selfcareisforeveryone for some journal prompt ideas!
4. Learn to shift negative thoughts you have about yourself and others.
Become aware of what your inner critic sounds like. With practice, you will be able to identify when you are engaging in negative self-talk and shift your mindset to lessen the negative energy in your life.
Remember, the voice you hear most, is your own. If you constantly hear a negative voice, you will always be in a negative mindset. Our words and thoughts are so powerful and they have a direct effect on how we evolve. In the video below, we see how words are able to change the way cooked rice spoils. In the rice experiment, the experimenter fills two jars with cooked rice. Each jar has a label on it with a different word: “Love” or “Hate”. Each day the experimenter speaks to the different jars with either loving words or hateful words. Watch the video to see what happens next…
If hateful words have such an effect on rice, what can they do to humans?
5. Use meditation as a way to connect with yourself.
Find a quiet and comfortable place to sit and focus on your breath. As you focus on your breath, you become more aware of the thoughts that cross your mind. Check out our meditation playlist on Spotify here- https://open.spotify.com/playlist/47Q6xNcsfi7G610xN2sEz0
6. Ask yourself some important questions:
- What do you value about yourself?
- What does self-love look like for you?
- What is one self-love goal you’d like to accomplish in the New Year?
7. Speak to yourself.
There are many people who will tell you to stand in front of a mirror and say nice things to yourself. That can be hard to do if your starting from a place of not even knowing what you love about yourself. A good place to start is to just acknowledge your own presence. This can be by looking into the mirror in the morning and saying “good morning” to yourself or wishing yourself a good day. Be your own friend.
8. Get to know your values.
Values are beliefs that guide your behaviors and they are what you deem important in your life. They are formed by your experiences and your environment. Know your core values so you can understand what’s truly important to you. This can help guide you in making difficult choices like picking a career or choosing the kind of lifestyle you’d like to live.
Below is a values quiz that will allow you to discover what your core values are.
9. Take a personality test and know your strengths.
If you are really interested in understanding how you act in situations or what your personality says about you, take the Myers-Briggs test and follow up by reading on what your personality means. Figure out which parts of your personality type you connect with.
After you receive your results, the site provides resources to allow you to see your strengths and your areas of growth that come with your personality.
Here is a free personality test:
10. Practice emotional hygiene:
As a society we value physical health over mental health. We are taught how to care for a cold or a cut but we are never taught to handle loneliness, failures, and rejection.
Here is a Ted Talk that speaks on what it means to practice emotional hygiene:
11. Make a vision board for yourself.
What do you hope to accomplish in the New Year? In the next 5 years? 10? Print images for your vision board for inspiration and to make it your own!! After you complete your vision board, hang it up where you can clearly see it every day.
Pro Tip: *For this activity, try to focus on habits and actions you plan to implement rather than “what you hope to look like” or “what you hope to have by the end of the year”.
12. Keep a handy list of the things that you value about yourself.
It’s easy to forget what makes you great on days when everything seems to be going wrong. When you are in the appropriate head space, write down a list of things you really value about yourself. Keep this list in an accessible place (like your phone) where you can reference it if you are feeling low in your self-esteem. That way you’ll have it with you wherever you go.
13. Make a self-care box with all on the things you may want when you are having an off day or for when you’re in crisis.
Examples of what you can put into your box:
- A list of your favorite ways to self-care
- Essential oils
- Your favorite face wash/moisturizer
- A list of people who are important in your life and who you can turn to for support (plus their phone numbers).
- A candle that you love
- Favorite book/books
-Photos you love to look at
- Tea for relaxation
-A coloring book or coloring sheets with colored pencils/markers
-A bath bomb
-ANYTHING ELSE YOUR HEART DESIRES
14. Establish your morning self-care routine.
Think about the morning self-care routine you typically follow, does your routine set you up to feel good? Implement one that prepares you to feel confident in the start of your day. If you conquer your morning, you’ll conquer your day. Make your bed, meditate, stretch, brush your teeth, or wash your face with your favorite face wash. Just do what makes you feel fresh and ready to start your day. When you start by feeling powerful, you will feel more confident in yourself each day.
Here is a video of Tim Ferriss sharing his most effective morning routine:
15. Get dressed in your favorite outfit (or one that you feel most confident/comfortable in).
When you like what you are wearing you feel more confident in yourself. Once you put the outfit on, look into a mirror and notice what you like about yourself in it. Remind yourself, "everything will be okay".
16. Plan a whole date for yourself and then take yourself on that date!
Remember, improving the relationship with yourself is like developing any other relationship. Staying in the same environment can make you feel bored and lonely. By changing your environment and making it a special occasion you will begin to value alone time. Many people wait for another human to enter their life before they can go on dates but you can absolutely take yourself on a date!
Ideas for a self-date:
- Coffee shop and a book
- Go for a walk to the park with your favorite tunes playing in your headphones
- Soak in a bubble bath
- Go to the movies by yourself
- Take a dance class (Or any kind of class)
- Crafting or scrapbooking
17. Get rid of toxic people in your life.
Make a list of people who bring you down and include people who bring negative feelings into your life. Come up with a plan of how you can let go of those relationships moving forward.
If you are in a situation where the individual brings you some value but it is still a toxic relationship, know your boundaries with that person. 2019 should be the year you stop giving 100% to people who give you 50%!!
Here is a video with 5 pieces of advice for saying no to toxic people:
18. Unleash your inner-child.
The environment you were raised in forms your belief system on who you are and the habits/behaviors you have. What beliefs or traumas have you held on to? Release those beliefs and let go of shame or guilt.
While our beliefs can sometimes keep us stuck in our childhood, to become adults we are taught to forget about playfulness, creativity, and wonder. This is a backwards way of thinking for "growing up".
In reality, we must work to heal from our past and incorporate more time for play, fun, and creativity. Fun and playing shouldn't stop when you get older, yet we reserve it for kids only. We never really allow ourselves to act childlike when we reach a certain age. What are activities did you love as a kid? Unleash your inner-child.
Here is a video explaining the inner-child:
19. Cultivate gratitude every single day.
There is always something to be grateful for, no matter where you are in your life’s journey!Not sure what to be grateful for? Watch this: