February is often thought of as the month of love. With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, I wanted to give you some ideas for simple ways to improve your relationship with the most important person in your life… yourself!
Self love is the key to having every single relationship in your life flourish! Quite simply, you cannot give what you don’t have, so it is vital for you to love yourself first, so that you are capable of giving love to the people around you!
When we do not love ourselves, we go looking for outside sources to fill up our love tanks. This leads to self destructive behaviors and codependent relationships. Happy, healthy relationships consist of two people who feel complete by themselves. It is from this place of wholeness that we are able to attract relationships that complement our lives. It all starts with loving ourselves first.
I know what you’re thinking… “That sounds really great, Ambar, but HOW do I learn to love myself more?”
Here are my top 10 ways to practice self love:
1) Start a gratitude practice.
Start a daily ritual of stating 5 things that you are grateful for each and everyday before you get out of bed in the morning! You can write them in a gratitude journal that you keep by your bedside, or even say them out loud! Showing gratitude instantly puts us in a positive mood and attracts more good things into our lives.
2) Start a daily self care ritual
Do one simple thing each day to show yourself a little extra love and attention. Wake up early to sip your coffee in peace. Give yourself a hand or foot massage. Light a candle and meditate. Start each morning with yoga. End each day with journaling. Choose something simple and doable and commit to doing it daily! This will show you that you deserve to be well taken care of.
3) Use affirmations
The ways in which we talk to ourselves matters. They become a self fulfilling prophecy. One of the quickest ways to change our inner dialogue is by using affirmations. An affirmation is a statement that is phrased in the positive tense and often starts with the words “I am…”. Create a self love affirmation such as “I am worthy.” “I am perfect exactly as I am today.” or “I treat myself with loving care.” Repeat your affirmation to yourself 10 times each morning, 10 times before bed, and 10 times each time you think of it throughout the day. For an extra boost, you can set reminders on your phone to remind you of your affirmation, and you can even start writing it down ten times daily for extra impact!
4) Eat more vegetables
I don’t care who you are or what your typical diet consists of, chances are, your body would love you a little bit more for feeding it more vegetables! Veggies are so good for us. They are detoxing and nourishing and make us feel healthy! Instead of restricting yourself by trying to cut out junk food, instead try adding in more vegetables.
5) Drink spa water
On the same note as eating more veggies, most of us could benefit from drinking more water! A really loving way to fuel yourself with H2O is to make a pitcher of spa water. Slice up some fruit or vegetables and throw them into a pitcher with distilled water. Some great options are cucumbers, lemon, and/or berries! Every time you get thirsty, drink a little spa water. I promise you it will feel like a treat!
6) Dress up
It might sound silly, but making an effort to get dressed everyday is a fun way to show ourselves some love. Take time to adorn yourself. Wear jeans instead of yoga pants, blowdry your hair, make a little extra effort with your makeup, put on your favorite sweater, and/or wear red lipstick! When we feel good about our appearance, this positive attitude radiates outward.
7) Surround yourself with people who love you
The people that we surround ourselves with make a huge impact on our lives. Take a look at your inner circle and make sure that it is full of people that are loving, encouraging, and supportive. Spend more time with the people that treat you well and less time with those that bring you down.
8) Nurture your spiritual connection
Take some time each day to tune into your connection with God, the Universe, angels, or whatever you believe in. Trust that there is more to life than what meets the eye and do whatever you can to nurture this connection. This will go a long way towards helping you feel loved and supported, which will in turn help you feel more loving toward yourself.
9) Move your body everyday
Find a movement practice that you love, and do it as much as possible! Go for a run, take a challenging exercise class, go for a daily walk, have a dance party in your kitchen! It doesn’t matter what you do, all that matters is that you get moving and have fun while doing it!
10) Thank yourself
Take some time each day to thank yourself for all that you do for yourself. The fact that you made it to the end of this list shows that you have the desire to take good care of yourself, and that’s something to celebrate! Stop whatever you’re doing right now, sit comfortable, and close your eyes. Place one hand over your heart, and the other hand over that hand. Silently say to yourself “Thank you, ______ (insert your name here). I love you ______ (insert your name here.” Do this for a few moments until you feel the love and gratitude spreading throughout your body.
I hope that you find these tips helpful, and that they encourage you to give yourself a little extra love this week!
Wishing you a week full of self love.