Today is Valentine’s day. Some are understandably less enthusiastic about this event for a wide number of reasons, but it can leave some people feeling a bit sad or gloomy, especially if they are single or have had relationships break down recently for one reason or another. However, there is always one person anyone and everyone can express their love for – themselves. Learn to love yourself more. I think Valentine’s day is the ideal opportunity to express love toward ourselves.
Many of us find it hard to love ourselves. On Valentine’s day, many are expending a lot of effort and are sharing love with partners, immediate family, relatives, and friends. Sometimes we neglect the most important person of all who deserves our attention and our love. So today’s blog entry is all about learning to love yourself.
Yesterday, I wrote How To Be More Loving and Loveable All Year Round and suggested that it is also easier to express love for others when we are drawing from a deep, full well. That is, some can find it difficult to share love with others because the source of love is dwindling, or even empty. Do you love yourself enough?
Where can you generate the love for people in your lives? Do you know any shop where it is available? (No, not even those shops sell the kind of love I am talking about today!) We can derive our love for others and derive more love for life when we have an abundance of love for yourself. It is incredibly to have a love for ourselves and that love helps us to grow, expand and share that love with others (as well as making us easier to love in return).
When you have a meal with friends or family, if you are really starving hungry at the start and when someone gives you a plate full of food, you go ahead and consume the food on the plate. Once your tummy is full, and there is more food available, you start looking around to share that food with others…. And I’m not just talking about boxes of Valentine’s day chocolates where you only start sharing once you’ve eaten all your favourites and the only ones left are the coffee ones that you can’t stand so you offer them around… Ahem I digress, but I hope you see the metaphor. Let’s get back on track with a quote:
“Loving yourself and extending that Love to others is the secret behind successful relationships” – Dr.Girish Kumar
So now comes the important question; how do you love yourself? Today, I wanted to share some (well, 12 to be precise) scientifically proven ways to love yourself more:
1. List The Things That You Love about Yourself:
Make this an ongoing project. You should commit time daily to do this and add to the list, but also have time to review it every day without fail. Take a piece of paper and at the top, write or type “things I love about being me” for example. Then list everything and anything you can think of that will help you love yourself more.
List the things that you love about yourself. From the dimples in your cheeks when you smile, to your wicked sense of humour, to your favourite pair of shoes, to your love of a particular type of music. Ask others to help and offer up some things you can add to the list too – ask friends and family. There are so many things there we just need to remind ourselves of them regularly.
Have the list with you – this can be in a journal or diary on paper foe example, or you can keep a list on an app such as Evernote which is my preferred choice. Then review the list every day at least once, ideally at the beginning of the day to set yourself up nicely for the day ahead.
2. Accept Things As They Are:
Research suggests that self-acceptance could lead to greater satisfaction with your life – but it’s a habit that many people practice the least. With awareness, practice, and perseverance it is learnable and easy to develop. With whatever is happening in your life, just flow with it without fighting it. For some it helps to be philosophical, perhaps believe that things happen for a reason, or better still recognise that everything that happens is an opportunity to learn. Learn to love yourself more. Every event and all adversity teaches us a lesson. So be keen on learning and developing on a continuous basis rather than complaining and repelling. Read this article to really learn how to practice self-acceptance:
Valentines Self-Acceptance With Self-Hypnosis.
3. Advance Self-Compassion:
I wrote an article a couple of years ago sharing part of a seemingly expanding body of evidence showing that self-compassion can offer many benefits to people. In a press release about an impressive recent study, lead author Professor Allison Kelly of the Department of Psychology at the University of Waterloo says:
“There is something about a high level of acceptance and understanding of oneself that helps people not necessarily view their bodies more positively, but rather acknowledge their bodies’ imperfections and be okay with them,”
Professor Kelly adds that realising that life’s disappointments and similar struggles are a normal part of life, and perceiving them with kindness can contribute to well-being. Read the full article here:
Why is self-compassion important? And how to advance it with self-hypnosis.
4. Quit Comparing:
It is very common for people to compare lives with others, and typically do so in detrimental fashion to oneself. Comparing fantastical ideals and unrealistic portrayals of life on social media or in the mainstream media with the reality of our own life only leads to dissatisfaction and disillusionment. Understand that no two people’s lives are the same, even if they are twins. The environment, education, learning, and situation; everything is different. It’s hard to love yourself more if you are distracted by comparing yourself to others. So instead of comparing your life with others, compete only with yourself, your own goals in life and see how you have progressed in your journey, and celebrate every single progressive step forward.
5. Gift Yourself Regularly:
When was the last time you gifted yourself something? And did so with no guilt???
Love yourself with a gift. Gifts need not be costly. It can be a trip, a fruit of your choice, an extra hour of sleep, or spending some money on a treat of some kind etc. Whatever it is, just keep gifting yourself regularly. You are showing yourself that: I am important to me, I like myself and I am very happy with myself.
6. Write a Gratitude List for How You Are Right Now:
Gratitude is something I have written about a number of times before here, but is also incredibly evidence based. The simple notion is that by appreciating what we have, we learn to be happy in the now. We spend less time pining for what we do not have and we realise that we have much to enjoy and love in our life. I have a gratitude list that I add to daily, but I also have an extensive list of stuff written down that I refer to and remind myself of that I am incredibly grateful for (again, I have this list in Evernote, but you can have it on paper or a journal etc). You then review the list regularly.
When you express gratitude with yourself about how you are right now, for the things that are happening in your life now. You will feel the love. Make a gratitude list regularly and you’ll love yourself more.
7. Move Away From Negative People:
Some people add to our self-love while others can add to a sense of self-loathing. Choose the right people to be associated with and see to that you are among people who motivate, push and propel you to give the best in your life. Don’t let a love vampire drain you!
8. Forgive Your Past:
Forgiving may or may not be good for the person whom you forgive. But it is definitely good for you. When you forgive the negative situations and negative people in your past that helps you to heal yourself and gain more love into your life. When you have stored negative emotions they do not open the space for positive things to enter into your life. Forgive yourself and you’ll love yourself more.
One neat way to do this is to cut the metaphorical ties that bind you to aspects of your pat, the technique in this article might be useful if that is the case for you: Wanting Too Much, Letting Go, And More Self-Hypnosis.
9. Integrity with Self:
According to psychologists, integrity is alignment – Alignment of your thoughts, feelings, what you say and what you do. Many people will have a mismatch. They will think and feel something but say and do the opposite. What you think, feel, say and do should have alignment that will give you a lot of confidence and respect for yourself. This will lead to loving yourself more. Here is a great article to help you develop your self-belief and make it easier to have integrity with self.
How To Believe In You – 9 and a bit Ways To Advance Self-Belief.
10. Register Your Wins:
Many people tend to keep a tight score of losses in our life, we keep a detailed reason why we failed also. David Burns (1980) highlighted this as a cognitive distortion and cognitive behavioural therapists highlight this notion of ‘discounting the positives’ with many of their clients. Many people forget to register the wins as we are so caught up in losses. You want to get into the habit of registering your victories, doesn’t matter how small it is.
One of best ways to do this is to write down your wins in a notebook or app at the end of the day and keep tracking it. Pan for gold at the end of the day and recognise all your victories. Persistence with this and the day will come when you feel it in your blood that you are a winner and you love that about yourself! This article expands upon this idea and shows you how to build upon it for maximum effect:
Being Positive: Creating A Happiness Filter Using Self-Hypnosis.
Dr Ivan Misner developed a business process with his BNI (Business Networking International) that was founded upon the notion of “givers gain.” Give want you would like more of. Kindness, empathy, understanding and of course – love.
By giving love, sharing our love we also gain more love. The moment you start loving yourself spread the love to the world, and you shall receive the same in abundance.This article will help you build upon this principle too:
Using Self-Hypnosis To Enjoy the Scientific Benefits of Loving Kindness.
12. Use Self-Hypnosis:
You knew that was going to get included here. Well, it is my raison d’etre! Tomorrow I will share with you a spectacularly wonderful, simple and effective self-hypnosis process to help you develop love for yourself.
(Here is a direct link to that article: Using Self-Hypnosis To Love Yourself More)
We all like to be loved in different ways. We can all receive more love whenever we like by offering it to ourselves regularly. All of these things will help you to develop a sense of accomplishment, a sense of pride in what you are doing and who you are, and a realisation that you are a worthy, talented, capable, loveable person who deserves to be loved.
If you’d like to be guided through a hypnotic process aimed at helping you to love yourself more then I offer an audio programme for just £2.99 here, you’ll be delighted you did: Love Yourself More.
Happy Valentine’s day! Go love yourself more.