Beginning Your Self-Love Journey
Hey guys! Welcome to yet another blog talking about building confidence and personal development. Two things that can be very hard to achieve but also very rewarding when achieved. These are also two things that are constantly being challenged and worked on in our personal and professional lives. They are both equally important when it comes to respecting and loving ourselves, because we need the confidence to set boundaries and show our truest selves, and we need the personal development aspect of things to understand what will help us grow and what we need in order to do so. Like I said…these are always being challenged, which can get pretty overwhelming sometimes. It’s important to be patient with your personal development and to show more self-compassion during the process.
It is important to learn to love yourself in all phases/transitions of your life. The one challenge is that for many people this doesn’t come too easy. It takes a lot of inner-child healing, forgiveness, empathy, and commitment. I know those may be some pretty scary words in your vocabulary and they are definitely all things we tend to procrastinate managing…however, they are all necessary to accept and recognize as an important part of our lives in order to begin our self-love journey.
In all honesty, everyone has their own process and journey when it comes to learning how to love and respect themselves. There isn’t really any step-by-step process since were all so different and unique. I am still working on learning about my own needs, desires, fears, trauma, strengths, weaknesses…etc, which are all important to address when discussing self-love. Honestly, this is one of the longest journey’s you will ever go on. It has never been easy for me and I do notice that I do have slip ups. Living with a depressed and anxious brain definitely does not help this process, but at the same time it is what it is and I am learning to accept myself for who I am. We will always have our ‘bad days’ when it comes to our self-image and mental health. It’s completely okay. However, it is so easy to downright throw ourselves under the bus and call it a day when this happens. It’s important to find ways to combat this behaviour on our ‘bad days’. It may be hard to do but it is not impossible. Here are some ways to begin your self-love journey and combat that negative self-talk:
Learn to Forgive Yourself
Yes, I can understand how hard this may be. So, please try your best to trust the process and undergo some inner-child work. Ask yourself questions like: What am I most ashamed about, and why? Am I holding onto any guilt, and what can you do to heal from that? Am I putting too much pressure on myself? Is there anything from the past I’m still holding onto that no longer serves me?
In my most vulnerable states, I find myself dwelling on past wrong-doings and totally judging myself. I mean a certain amount of judgement is healthy but it can get pretty unhealthy quite quickly if not managed accordingly. Sometimes I’ll have a mini conversation with myself giving space to understand what happened and to reflect on past decisions, and then I’ll open my heart to accept those same decisions for what they are in order to move forward and to leave room for forgiveness.
At the end of the day, we become better versions of ourselves after overcoming those obstacles that resulted from those wrong-doings or wrong decisions. In my opinion, everything happens for a reason, and I don’t believe we should have any major regrets in life, because we always tend to do what we feel is right in the moment. It’s okay to own up to that. I’ve included a link below that you can check out if you would like more guidance on how to forgive yourself.
Recognize and Reflect on your Strengths
Honestly this one always stumps me. It takes me a solid few minutes to get into the mindset of “hey, I’m actually good at some things in my life”. Despite how you may think of yourself, you are always going to have strengths, and no…I’m not just talking about the strengths you list on a resume. I’m also talking about those strengths you carry with you in your daily life.
For instance, I know that I’m a pretty good listener, I’m a decent cook (after years of learning how not to burn food, of course), I’m a self-starter, I am a pretty good advice giver, I’m an extremely hard-worker, I’m loyal, etc. These are a few examples that are relevant in my life, but here’s a list of some that could be relevant in yours:
o Great reader
o Humble and kind
o Amazing chef
o Jack of all trades
o Hilarious story teller
o Awesome parent
o Loyal friend
o Unique artist
o Great hairstylist
o Dedicated worker, etc.
This is a journey, not a destination. It is going to be a long process and it will more than likely take a lot of your time and effort. Unfortunately, it’s not usually possible to make this happen in one day…you know, unless you wake up with a straight up epiphany. Therefore, patience will be so important. Just like you have to be patient with other things in life…you’ll have to be patient with yourself too. Try not to be too hard on yourself if you experience a few setbacks along the way. We are forever changing beings and we will always be learning self-love and -acceptance throughout our lives as we undergo our personal transitional phases.
Challenge your Body Mentally and Physically
Your mind and body are capable of doing hard things. Sometimes you can really surprise yourself with the amount of challenges we can overcome mentally and physically. Along with many in-depth studies, I truly believe that your mental and physical wellness directly correlate to each other. If you don’t challenge yourself in these aspects then it takes away a lot of opportunity to feel proud and to gain clarity on what you are capable of.
Make the Commitment
This journey is quite a hefty commitment to make, which is why it may be a little scary to start it. Sometimes the word commitment truly does come with a lot of baggage, however, it doesn’t always have to feel like that. I feel that it’s important to be optimistic about how loving yourself will positively impact your future self. The end goal is freedom in my mind. Freedom from the pressure you put on yourself, freedom from that negative self-talk, freedom from thinking you need to be perfect, freedom to just be you and not have to worry what people think. Along your journey you will also attain a huge load of confidence as well, which is always a great thing to feel and accomplish.
You just need to say yes to this journey every day. Yes, we all have our bad days and I totally get that it’s going to be difficult in the beginning. This is a big commitment! Just try your best to be your own #1 supporter and to envision who you need to be to get to where you wanna go. Your truest self is already within you…it’s just the process of recognizing who that is.
Another thing that may help is asking close family and friends to hold you accountable for your goals. It helps if you know you have other people cheering you on too. We thrive with connection.
Use Positive Affirmations as a Tool
I have talked about this so many times already, but that’s only because I am very passionate about what we ‘feed our brain’. If we’re constantly using negative self-talk then we will constantly be focusing on our weaknesses and things we feel we can’t accomplish. Since our brains are already pre-disposed to negativity…this gives us next to no room to even begin to love our imperfect selves.
One thing that has helped me in the past is writing out and repeating positive affirmations. Now, this isn’t the fix all solution but it’s definitely a start. Some affirmations I really like are:
o Everything is going to be okay.
o I am only human, we all make mistake sometimes.
o My past does not determine my future.
o I try my best, and that is all I can do.
o I am right where I need to be.
These are a few I use in my daily life, whether I’m feeling anxious or just having a not so great day. These affirmations have a way of grounding me and helping me slow down my thoughts sometimes. I’ve included a link below so that you can check out some more positive affirmations that may work better for you.
These are only a few tips on how you can feel more comfortable starting this journey. The first step is recognizing when it is your time to shine and put yourself first. It is for sure something to be proud of. I admire your strength and your resilience. I believe that everything you need for success is within you. You will just need to face a few more growing pains to get to where you'd like to be. I hope you guys have a great rest of your week! Thank you for joining me for another blog. You're the best! Cheers xx