By Celina Pizarro
Self love is not a state of feeling nor a moral flaw or expression of vanity or selfishness it is an action. Many of us take action to please others first and in doing so we sacrifice our own needs. Self love is an act of valuing your own happiness and well-being consistently. It is an acceptance and showing unconditional support, caring and kindness towards the self. In the act of self love it is noticing what makes you happy and brings you joy and consciously doing more of that.
“The person in life you will be with the most is yourself.”
Self love is about relating to yourself without harsh judgement and without punishment. It's simply good self care. Research shows it can be associated with decreased depression and anxiety, increased optimism and improved stress recovery time. Those that practice self love regularly are more likely to adhere to other healthy habits and behaviors such as diet and exercise have and report improved quality of sleep thus improving their overall state of well-being.
Self love is a more effective motivator than shame or self criticism. These emotions lead to inner conflict and rebellion which will result in giving up and abandonment of activities. For example if you make a decision this week to start a new 8 week exercise program because you want to lose 20 pounds, but get frustrated in week two because you are not seeing results and think, “See I knew this was a waste of time, I am never going to lose this weight, what was I thinking I’m not 25 anymore!” You will most likely stop by week 3 because your inner conflict will be greater than your desire to lose weight. However if you choose instead to celebrate the small victories such as actually making it to the gym 4 days a week for two weeks, this act of self love provides hope and allows for trust in the process of change because we all know that 20 lbs didn’t show up in two weeks and it’s certainly going to take longer than that to work it off.
Here are 7 Ways to Perform Self Love:
- Write a love note to yourself each day and sign it “With Love,”. Make it super positive!
- Surround yourself with loving positive people in person and online, ‘unfriend’ the negative Nellies.
- Make a list of positive things and people daily – use your five sense and think, “What brings me Joy?”
- Treat your body and energy well. Eat well and have faith. Faith is the foundation of self love so open your heart and soul to something greater than you.
- Do not compare yourself to others. Social media is not the real world most of the time, so take a break from Instagram.
- Do more of what you are good at. Dedicate at least 30 min a day to doing what you love and are good at; signing, dancing, writing, painting.
- Its ok to say NO. Understand you do not have to be everything to everyone and it is healthy to know and enforce boundaries. You do not have to the girl scout troop leader if your schedule is already full!
Being mindful of your inner experience without judgement, especially during stressful times or negative/difficult situations is key to a continued state of self love. To be mindful, consciously choose to accept that the situation is happening, acknowledge it without associating with it (this will take some practice) and scan your physical body to identify where the discomfort is coming from. Now feel and send compassion and comfort to that area as if you were sending compassion to a loved one, such as your child. Notice any resistant thoughts, as it is natural for these to pop up, acknowledge them and give your the permission to receive compassion. With practice this process of visualization will become a more natural response.
Visualization does take a little practice, but if you can identify, challenge and release the old negative stories you tell yourself, you will have the ability to view it from a new kinder perspective making the process more automatic. This can be done through forgiveness and encouraging self talk. I think of it as I would when I’m encouraging my best friend in a situation that she feels defeated, I would say to her, “You got this girl!” Be your own cheerleader!
Looking for the positive in everyday situations can be a gateway to increased self love. In choosing to identifying the good in others and our surroundings this allows for positivity to flow; turn that inwards and allow the love to flow into you. Love yourself emotionally and physically. This is the only body and mind you will have on this worldly journey so treat it well and with love.
About the Author:
Celina Pizarro is a Certified Holistic Lifestyle and Nutrition Coach and a Money Mindset Mentor who is on a mission to expose the misconceptions of the healthcare industry and has dedicated her life to help women “Live Well”. Author of the best selling book, “You GLOW Girl!” and creator of the women’s transformation programme, 90 Days to GLOW. Celina is known for helping women breakthrough their internal blocks, lose weight, decrease their stress & anxiety, while increasing their ENERGY and VITALITY. Signup at www.cpfitpro.com to receive her newsletter full of health, wellness and fitness tips. Follow her on IG, FaceBook, YouTube