When you first read this word, the first thing that would come to your mind would be,
Isn’t that Narcissism, or being egoistic?
The difference between Narcissism and Self love is that, when you say you are a narcissistic person, that means you want the whole world to revolve around you.
When you say you love yourself that means you want peace and happiness to revolve around you.
See the difference?
Self love means accepting who you truly are. Self love also includes the dimension of physical, psychological and spiritual well being. When these three are in a perfect balance, you shall then feel a sense of calm.
There will be an increase in the level of self acceptance. You shall also work towards growing towards being a better version of yourself, not indulge in unhealthy comparison with others.
Maybe you feel your weight is too much, maybe you feel you do not have enough body weight, either way!
You are perfect!
When you accept your true self, you accept that there are some setbacks, some destructive habits that you would have as a human. There are some mistakes in the past that hinder you from moving ahead, that makes you hate yourself or makes you feel angry at yourself for doing that.
I once read this quote somewhere, that the relationship that you have with yourself is the most difficult one.
At first I never understood why the author said that, it’s only later when I read the further explanation that I realised what he said was correct.
Look back in your past and introspect, wouldn’t there be so many things that you would still be blaming yourself for?
How would that make you feel?
Angry, hurt, guilty, shameful, etc?
In order to move past this to love yourself in the purest form, there is a need to remind yourself that you did the best you could at the moment in time.
Rest, once you decide that you wish to take this journey of Self love, rather than trying to fit into the world’s ideal definition of love and perfection, you shall seek peace and happiness.
So what exactly is this Self love mantra?
Here are a few to start off with:
Embrace your past and forgive yourself for those mistakes:
I get it, this is not that simple to do.
But hey! If you keep reminding yourself of those past mistakes you will keep entangling yourself in the past chain.
Rather, accept those mistakes, embrace them.
All of those mistakes, those drunk calls, those moments wasted upon someone who hurt you, did not make you weak! It rather made you stronger for you have survived that.
This will not magically happen in one day, it would take practice.
Everyday before sleeping, remind yourself that you forgive yourself for those mistakes you made in the past. You also forgive others who hurt you intentionally in the past.
Another activity you can do is, if you feel more comfortable in writing, then you can write a forgiveness letter to your past self. Or pray everyday and seek forgiveness from yourself.
This is an example of the prayer I say every night before going to bed,
“I forgive myself for all the mistakes I made in the past. Please give me the strength to embrace them and become a better version of myself.”
Practice Self Care :
This has to be one of the most important aspects if you wish to practise Self Love.
You cannot love yourself, if you are not mindful about your own physical, emotional, sexual needs.
Self care includes everything!
Right from the food you would eat, to your skin care or night time routine, everything is important.
An ideal self care routine includes making sure you eat healthy, protein rich food and juicy fruits. Cut yourself some slack from those sugary and refined flour breads, etc.
Try getting a body massage or a hot oil hair massage, this will help you relax and it feels very refreshing.
Try taking care of your skin and body. Have loads of water, try some outdoor activity, go out and get those running shoes on track!
Your physical body is the first thing that is noticed by yourself and others too. First impression is the last right?
Next, try regulating your emotions and sharing what you actually feel.
Learn the art of saying “NO” when you do not wish to do something.
It’s okay to say no and temporarily disagree with your friends feelings rather than saying yes and permanently breaking your own heart.
Accept yourself for who you truly are :
Ask yourself this question, do you truly accept yourself for who you truly are?
Self acceptance comes with allowing yourself to be how you truly are and being totally alright with it. It’s accepting that there are some negative aspects about you too. We are humans and it’s very natural to have them.
It’s all about the way you balance them out. And work in the direction of adding more positive traits in your life, not negatives which would pull you down.
So go on, dance in the rain, write poems, bake cookies, ask that girl out who you pushed away to act cool.
Life is too short!
Go on and live the moment that makes you feel alive, but bravely face the one that makes you weak too.
Include mantras during meditation :
When you include positive mantras or phrases during meditation, you are making way for those positive phrases to be fully ingrained into your unconscious mind.
When meditating, try positive affirmations. Leave others for that moment, keep the focus upon yourself.
These are a few positive mantras you can inculcate next time you are meditating :
- I am beautiful just the way I am.
- I am worthy of all the good things in my life.
- I accept my flaws, they make me strong too.
- I am becoming a better version of myself everyday.
- Each new day, I will allow more positive thoughts to surround me.
Try writing positive things about yourself / deeds you have done.
Lastly, any self love practise is incomplete without actually introspecting about those positive deeds and acts you did in the past and jotting them down in your diary or journal.
You can start by mentioning simplest or simple deeds, such as you helped a lady in the way, made coffee for your S.O, and did the laundry all by yourself.
Mention how proud you are that you accomplished these without anyone’s help, and rate your happiness, out of 10 for every task you did. This will help you see that there are so many tasks you do in the entire day, that too so quickly and efficiently which is unique to you!
As Robert Morley rightly said, to fall in love yourself is the first secret to happiness and I couldn’t agree less. For the more you fall in love with yourself and accept your true self, the more loving and accepting you shall be of others in your life.