In the past, I spent a lot of time feeling awful about myself.
Whenever I went through a rough time, I’d beat myself up about it, thinking that I wasn’t living up to my full potential.
The truth was that I treated myself this way because I didn’t love myself and I had developed a lot of self-defeating habits.
I needed to adopt self-love habits instead.
Not as a reward when I succeeded, but as a practice for simply being me.
We all experience moments of self-doubt, resentment, or maybe even hopelessness.
But these emotions aren’t a reflection of who we are, they are signposts of who we want to become.
- If you spent a lot of time in self-doubt, it’s because you want to be confident
- Being fearful of rejection means you need self-acceptance
- Beating yourself up for making mistakes is a sign of self-forgiveness
We all adopt disfuctional habits that undermine our worth. But we can bring awareness to these behaviours and begin to make a change.
Self-love isn’t something we feel, it is something we do out of respect for ourselves.
And these can be habits that we learn. Or self-destructive habits we unlearn.
Here are 5 self-love habits that are essential for a happy life.
Table of Contents
1. Embrace Your Imperfections
No one is perfect.
Perfectionism will forever remain to be a goal that is impossible to achieve. Although this might be painful to hear, it is the truth.
I’m not saying that you should stop trying your best. What you need to do is quit striving for perfection and instead, aim for excellence.
It’s also important to embrace your imperfections.
Whether it be your appearance, capabilities, or your behaviour. There are things about you that are unchangable, so it’s essential to accept these things fully.
And the things you can change still need to be accepted before you can change them
When you begin to accept and embrace what is not perfect about yourself or situation, you begin to appreciate yourself more for being you.
Your authentic self.
2. Meet Your Needs
If you’re like me, you were raised to neglect your own needs and focus on meeting the needs of others.
This forms into devastating consequenses in adulthood.
We go through life believing it is our responsibility to make others happy. We may even get lost in fixing other people as to avoid our own responsibilities.
Worse than that, we stop meeting our own needs and expect others to meet them for us.
But to no avail.
What we need is to stop being over-responsible for others and become more responsible for meeting our own needs.
Even though we may not feel like we deserve it. Or we were never taught how to in childhood.
It’s still possible to develop the habit of meeting your needs. And when you do, you’ll start to feel a deep appreciation for yourself.
3. Engage in Activities That Bring You Joy
Sign up for a singing or dancing class, start hiking, cooking or playing with Legos. Spend more time doing the activities you loved to do when you were younger.
This is a true sign of self-love and it can be a habit you develop over time.
If you’re too caught up in adult responsibilities that rob your time and attention, you’ll wonder where all the joy went.
You don’t need anyone’s permission to enjoy yourself. Not your spouse or your parents.
You’re the adult now and you deserve to have fun, without the guilt.
So, make a list of all the activities you’ve missed out on or used to be involved in.
Or think about starting up a hobby you’ve never tried before.
Ask a friend if they would like to join you. Or get stuck in by yourself.
You’ll thank your future self for doing so.
4. Acknowledge Your Wins
The secret to being happy with yourself is realizing your big goals won’t happen overnight.
It might take you a week, a month or several years, but that’s okay. Don’t focus so much on the end goal that you forget to celebrate the small wins.
Even though the milestones are small, thay are still a significant step towards creating change.
Celebrating small wins is not only a way of practicing self-love but also a method to keep you motivated. With proper motivation, you’ll be able to stay on track and find the strength to soldier on.
That said, here are a few ways to celebrate your small victories:
- Feel the excitement– don’t try to downplay any victory. With each of these small triumphs, you’re inching closer to your goal. Let that thought excite you.
- Treat yourself – every achievement should be rewarded. You can do this by cooking yourself a meal you like, watching a great movie or going shopping.
- Share your wins– when you accomplish something, share it with a friend or colleague. When describing the event, be enthusiastic and proud of yourself
- Live in the present – when in pursuit of the end goal, there are those who take their present for granted. But this should not be the case; concentrate on your present activities the same way you would in future events.
5. Find your Inner Strength
When you’re feeling low because something is not working out, what do you usually resort to?
Some turn to alcohol while others go shopping. Others binge on Netflix and some binge on junk food.
Rather than hide away from your problems by distracting yourself, look deeper within yourself.
Believe that you can handle anything that is thrown your way, and face your challenges head-on. We all feel overwhelmed, struggle to overcome procrastination, or lose sight of what we want.
But there is something you’re passionate about that wants to be brought to life.
When you face yourself and your challenges head on, you realize just how strong you are. You honor your self and believe you can achieve anything you set your mind to.
I hope you found these self-love habits helpful.
Remember, developing behaviors that honor yourself and your worth take time.
Reflecting on your progress daily or once per week to fully integrate a new way of seeing yourself.
And gradually, you find a new found appreciation and respect for yourself.