Love is a way of being, of living and is a direct reflection of your beliefs. I used to feel like a loser, worthless, ugly and as if I would always feel sad. When I became aware of why I believed that way I begin to take the steps to change my belief. I began the practice of self-love.
- Commit to Self-Love!
At first the thought of writing messages to myself was corny and ineffective, until I paid attention to how I felt afterward. Now it’s enjoyable and reassuring to write self-love affirmation that I post around my room and social media pages or read to myself first thing every morning(almost every morning). I recommend writing about 3-6 sentences. Not too short that you can’t connect to your affirmation, but not too long that you feel overwhelmed at the thought of a daily reading. I added mine to the notepad on my phone and set a calendar reminder to read it every morning as soon as I wake up. This only takes a minute so it’s easy to add to my schedule.
- Surround yourself with positive messages.
Whether the messages are from TV, those intrusive magazines in the checkout line or who you follow on social media, becoming aware of negative marketing and evaluating the media you consume will allow you to focus on interactive learning as opposed to just consuming news. I stopped watching and reading the major news outlets (and their advertisements that promote low self-worth) who are invested in drama and negativity as opposed to simply educating about events and the world. I stopped obsessing over fashion and begrudgingly ended my addiction to (most) womens magazines and began to read positive media like YES Magazine and activism inspired news like Ms. Magazine.
- Catch AHA! moments.
Take note of what you learn. Whatever you realize is making you happy or unhappy, what feels good or unhealthy and any moment of clarity that allows you insight into being your best self should be recorded. This will allow you to stay focused on creating a solid foundation of loving yourself.
- Try mindfulness practices such as journaling, meditation or exercise.
I love to meditate on a positive affirmation. It’s as simple as repeating an affirmation repeatedly with regular focused breathing. I also take walks and stop to create art from debris, trash, leaves and rocks, whatever is lying around that might make a fun pattern or design. I made the heart below from discarded candy wrappers littering the sidewalk. I also journal whenever i feel the need to write my feelings or record an important event. I also enjoy actions that force me to focus such as yoga, breathing exercises and sitting still in the evening to drink tea and doodle.
If you need help with practicing self-love check out the Love Warrior Community(the Self Love Diet). This online community offers free tools and events designed to help us love our bodies. It’s my favorite resource and was started by Michelle Minero a licensed therapist and is supported by her daughter Emelina. www.lovewarriorcommunity.com
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