Valentines Day is Self Love Day! In the spirit of that, here are 40 ways to love yourself!
1. Give up the belief that you need to change in order to like yourself. You are perfect, whole and complete right now at this very moment. Take a breath, be still and just for 30 seconds be with the essence of who you are. Meeting goals and evolving is what we naturally do as humans, that won’t change if you self-accept. In fact, you might find that you are more efficient because you are not bogged down by thoughts of worthlessness.
2. Take care of yourself. Make simple changes to help you to be more healthy. Floss your teeth, take your vitamins, groom your nails. Do things that help you to feel valued by yourself. Show yourself that you are worthy.
3. Put yourself first. When someone asks you to do something, rather than instantly saying yes, tell them that you’ll give them an answer in 24 hours. That way you can think about whether or not this infringes on your boundaries. It helps you to understand whether or not you are sacrificing your own needs for someone else. So often people who don’t like themselves try to be indispensable for others. In the process though, they completely lose themselves. Keep yourself whole by being there for you first.
4. Forgive yourself. You have made mistakes. Of course you have. You are human. We all make mistakes. But being able to say, “okay, I messed up, but I can’t go back, I can’t stay in the past, I can only go forward…” is the way to move on with your life.
5. Let yourself do the things that you want to do. Think about what it is that makes you tick, the things that make you feel alive! Is it knitting? Is it martial arts? Is it cooking? Is it painting? Writing? Gardening? Whatever it is, even if it’s just something that you do as a hobby, allow yourself to follow your passion. When you do, you will find more joy in being you.
6.Let go of wanting. It’s normal to have desires. But when what you want equates to whether or not you are happy, you will never feel satisfied with who you are. When who you are is equal to what you have, you will never like yourself because you can always want and always have more. When you are grateful for what you do have, you can truly find peace. Try making a gratitude list. This is like counting your blessings. Just write down everything that you are grateful for and read it over and over. Feel it. Believe it. When you focus on that rather than what you don’t have, you will find a lightness like never before.
7. Let yourself be totally silly. See what it’s like to let down your guard. Try to let go of what other people are thinking. If you can’t, go into a room by yourself and just do the dumbest dance that you can possibly do, just to let off some steam and find some playfulness within. This is a way to enjoy your own company and just like being with yourself a bit more.
8. Don’t judge other people. Take a day to think of one nice thing about each person you come into contact with. You will feel lighter in your body. Letting go of judgment of others is one of the best ways to stop judging yourself.
9. Spend some time just being. Sit and try to follow your breath. Don’t force yourself to take deep breaths. Just close your eyes, put your hand on your heart and feel the way your breath. Do this for 1-5 minutes. You will find that your mind and body begin to relax. Your thoughts of having to do, do, do will fade and you will just be with you. This is another way to just accept who you are in this very moment.
10. Practice kindness in every aspect of your life. While you’re driving, wave someone through who is waiting to get out of a parking lot into the road. Give your leftovers to someone who is hungry.
11. Do simple things to make yourself feel nurtured. File and clean your nails– maybe even get a manicure or pedicure. Take a nap, clean your sheets and make your bed, shower, wash and condition your hair, shave, and let yourself relax.
12. Face your finances and deal with your debt. Look at how much you owe and how much you have. Make a plan to pay off your debt. It will just make you feel better.
13. Take a long, quiet walk in nature. Being in nature is good for your mind, body and spirit.
14. Sit down and drink a hot cup of tea.
15. Rent a funny movie and laugh a lot.
16. Smile at 10 random people. You will instantly feel bright and joyous and full of love when you infuse good into the world and it will integrate it into your own psyche.
17. If you don’t feel like smiling, force it. The activation of the muscles used to create a smile actually decrease stress in increase feelings of well-being.
18. Express gratitude. One of the great tragedies of our psyches is that it is so difficult to appreciate what we have one we are wanting more. It’s important to want more, but the way to really find happiness is to appreciate and love and be grateful for what you have. Don’t let yourself believe that you’ll be happy when… Be happy now. Be grateful now. Don’t allow your happiness to be held hostage by future events that may or may not happen. Make a list, even in your mind, of all the things you’re grateful for.
19. Try self-hypnosis to bring joy into your world. This works because your world is created by the thoughts you think.
20. Spend time with your pet. Being around animals and caring for them make humans happier.
21. Pray to whatever deity you believe in, even if it’s your own higher self.
22. Jump up and down for 60 seconds. Your endorphins will release and you will feel good!
23. Put music on and dance like crazy. Even if you think you can’t dance, just dance. My toddler loves to shake his head back and forth to any rhythm and it makes him deliriously happy.
24. Talk to the dead. Just get into a quiet mood and begin talking either out loud or in your head to someone you miss. Having conversations in your head with people who have passed away can be incredibly healing.
25. Compliment someone. Tell someone how beautiful they are, or what a good job they’re doing or how much you appreciate them. It will bring joy to their world and make you happy too.
26. Call someone you haven’t spoken to in a long time.
27. Drink a glass of water. Mild dehydration can cause a bad mood and pessimism.
28. Stretch your legs, roll your ankles, your wrists, roll your neck, get your body into a comfortable position. Stretching makes you happy!
29. Play in the dirt! Gardening can make you feel happy. Mycobacterium, which occurs naturally in soil, has the same effect on your brain as anti-depressant medications.
30. Look at old pictures — for a bonus happiness boost, share them with someone you love.
31. Try to do a push up. If you cannot, try again the next day. Within a week, you’ll be able to do a pushup. Do this everyday and by the end of a month, you’ll be doing 5 push ups a day. After a year, you’ll be doing 50 pushups a day. You’ll feel super accomplished, not to mention strong.
32. Sing a song out loud.
33. Have only 20 seconds? Choose one.
34. Hug someone. Human touch makes us calm, relaxed and peaceful.
35. Take a bath with epson salts. Magnesium relaxes your muscles and helps you have a sense of peacefulness making you happier.
36. Send wishes for the people around you to be happy, kind and compassionate.
37. Let go of people that make you unhappy. You can choose to let go with compassion of friends who feel toxic. It’s okay to do that.
38. Read the Alchemist. I read this book right after my Mom died and it changed my mood immeasurably. It’s an amazing mood lifting book.
39. Floss your teeth!
40. Take a nap. Being well rested is the best way to be happy. Get your sleep in order and aim for 7-9 hours of sleep each night.