Contrary to lifestyle magazines, self-love is more than just bubble bath and face-masks
On the days when I felt stressed in college, I remember setting aside those Saturday nights. for self-love! I then pampered myself by oiling my hair, putting on face-masks, and binge-watch comedy skits on YouTube. The next day, I extended this by going out on a pizza date by myself.
Over time, I learned that I don’t need to wait till my mind flashes SOS for me to practice self-love. I can love myself every day in little ways to respect my beautiful mind and body – and that has helped me immensely. By listening to my body and putting myself on priority, I have become happier, healthier, and feel less burned out.
How to practice self-love every day
Take time for yourself
It all starts from here. It is super important to take time for yourself and tap into whatever rejuvenates you. That could be taking bubble baths and applying face masks, listening to your favorite music, dancing your heart out, cooking a delicious meal, or going out to eat. Whatever makes you happy! It also means to take some time out to take a moment and check-in with yourself.
Check-in with your emotions
A lot of times, people stretch themselves thin between work, daily life, and social obligations. But you must carve out some alone time (even just a few minutes) in your daily routine to do some mindfulness activities or whatever works to help you check in with your emotions. It could be meditation, journaling, or stargazing. I maintain a bullet journal and fill it up at the end of my day. It gives me a chance to be reflective of the day and my emotions towards it. I also sometimes look at the stars and, it makes me feel extremely humble to reconnect with nature.
Accept your emotions
When you have taken some time out to check in with your emotional state, you need to recognize your emotions and embrace them. Recognize how you feel and what triggered those emotions in you. Whether that is happiness, frustration, demotivation, or gratitude, recognizing why you feel those emotions and accepting that it is okay is a crucial part of the self-care routine. If you are a little under the weather, acknowledge that some days are better than others and that it is okay to have an off day or a period.
Talk to yourself more loving-ly
We all have this inner dialogue running through our heads most hours of the day. This monologue must be positive and loving. It is easy to do that when things go as planned. Not so much when stuff falls apart and you feel not so great about yourself. That is when our self-talk can be very negative, leading to feelings of self-doubt, self-judgment, and even self-loathing. At those moments, ask yourself what someone who loves you would act? What would they say? Odds are, they would not criticize or judge you. Instead, they would offer kindness, compassion, acceptance, and forgiveness. Practice being that towards yourself.
Stop comparing yourself
The grass is always greener on the other side. By comparing our greatest insecurities with someones else greatest “perceived” success, we only belittle ourselves. Instead, realize that you cannot compare your life to someone else’s because no matter how well you know them, you never know how they feel or how they perceive their life.
And if you catch yourself scrolling your Instagram feed to compare their perfectly edited bodies with yours or their perfectly curated life with yours, remember most of it is only for the gram.
Surround yourself with people you feel good with
That means cutting out on all toxic friendships and relationships. Ain’t nobody got the time for that! It has made such a significant impact on my overall life. When I cut ties with people who drained my energy or didn’t reciprocate my love and respect for them, I felt free. I no longer had to walk on eggshells. Instead, I was with people whom I had a good understanding. Surround yourself with those people who inspire you, make you happy, respect you, and love you. Be picky about who you spend your time with. Just because you have been with them a long time now doesn’t mean you need to continue doing that. Be there because you want to, not because you have to.
Have healthy habits
Get enough sleep! Sleep is so important and often overlooked. In today’s age – when you have so many things on your plate, it can be easy to justify late nights and early mornings just so that you can squeeze everything-in. Sometimes you cannot sleep because you are scrolling through your phone late at night. But, whatever it is, sacrificing your sleep affects both your mental and physical health. Try to get a solid 8 hours of sleep each night.
Exercise! It helps boost endorphins and helps relieve all the stress that builds up in day-to-day life. If you are stressed out, adding this additional task might make you feel a little overwhelmed but exercise doesn’t have to mean sweating it out in the gym! It can be as simple as taking a walk on your lunch break or doing 30 minutes of yoga. I love doing dance fitness when I come home from work. It is such a fun way to release all of my stress from work and get that heart rate pumping.
Eat right. Paying attention to your diet is important because it contributes to how you feel as-well-as your energy level. It doesn’t mean you have to diet all the time or skip junk food completely but, mindfully eating foods that can nourish your body. It is not about your weight, but more about how you feel.
Self-love is exactly what it means – loving yourself. It means to love yourself by accepting your flaws, your insecurities, and also your strengths. It also means to practice self-care in which you care for your mental, emotional and physical health to be your best possible selves. For some, this might feel like being selfish – this new concept of prioritizing yourself but, this is far from the truth. Practicing self-love doesn’t make you selfish. It just means that you won’t settle for less than you deserve because you understand and respect your own needs. To create a safe space for yourself – where you can make mistakes, grow and connect with yourself a little more.
How does your self-love routine looks like?
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