By: Jennifer Twardowski
Most of us aren’t well-developed in the whole self-love department. We are great at doing things for all the other people in our lives, but whenever it comes to doing things for ourself and giving ourselves what we truly need we struggle.
We loan that friend that extra money that they said they needed, but forget or feel bad whenever it comes to asking them to pay us back. We tell our boss that we will work overtime, but we forget about all the things we will be neglecting for ourselves by working the extra time.
When we put ourselves and our own needs and desires on the back burner, we can find ourselves feeling emotionally and physically drained, tired, and unfulfilled. So what are some things that we can do to love ourselves unconditionally? Here are 5 ways:
Treat your body well!
Are you starting every morning with a coffee and a McMuffin? You may want to change that.
What we eat and how much we exercise directly correlates to our mental and emotional health and well-being. If we’re feeling tired and drained, going out and having huge pizza with a pitcher of beer isn’t going to make you feel better. Rather, it’s only going to make you feel more tired and drained afterwards.
So ditch all the fatty and processed foods while watching primetime TV after work and opt-in for some fresh fruits and vegetables and a trip to the gym. The better we eat and the more we move our body, the more we are expressing our love for ourselves by giving ourselves a better chance to feel good!
Take time every day to get centered.
In the midst of all the hustle and bustle of our lives, many of us forget about the importance of taking some time to relax and just be still.
So take about 5 to 10 minutes every morning and evening to do something that allows you to get centered. This may be through meditation, breath work, self-reflection, journaling, or even just some stretching.
Getting into the regular habit of taking a few minutes to stop and look within enhances our well-being by giving us the chance to stop focusing so much on what’s going on around us and to look within.
Forgive yourself — and others!
One thing that can keeps us in a place of suffering is holding on to past hurts and resentments. These can be things that we feel bad about ourselves because we had not done better or known better, such as saying something to someone that you wish you hadn’t or agreeing to something that turned out to be a bad idea.
On the flip side, it is also very important to forgive others because otherwise we can find ourselves filled with bitter resentments that weight us down. So in order to truly take care of you, it is vital to take the time to accept what is, release any resentments, and to just forgive. In doing so you allow yourself to evolve, grow, and become who you are truly meant to be.
Accept where you are on your journey.
The trouble that many of us can have is that we have trouble accepting where we are in our journey. We tell ourselves things like: “If only I had enough money to buy a house now” or “I wish I already had my book written.”
We can find ourselves on this train of always focusing on what we don’t have and what we want to have instead that we forget about all the things that we already do have! We forget to acknowledge all the things that we already have accomplished.
So take the time to reflect on what good things you do have right now and be easy on yourself so you can fully accept where you are on your journey.
Create and sustain relationships where you are loved, supported, and appreciated.
Do you have people in your life that you always do favors for but they never acknowledge what you have done for them? Do you have people in your life aren’t really supportive of you? Then you may want to re-evaluate your relationships.
If you are in a relationship with someone who is not really giving you the love and support that you know that you deserve then you may want to distance yourself and find people who do love, support, and appreciate you as you truly are. After all, you deserve it!
Based on the list above, what can you start doing today to love yourself more? Eat better? Forgive? Start meditating every day? Tell us in the comments below!
Image courtesy of Nutdanai Apikhomboonwaroot/freedigitalphotos.net
Jennifer is a self and relationship coach and teacher. She is the founder of jennifertwardowski.com where she helps women create fulfilling relationships and lives by reconnecting with their true heart’s desires. Grab a copy of her Self and Relationship Healing Meditation and follow her on Facebook and Twitter.