This article is going to discuss 5 ways to learn self-love and find happiness.
Self-love is simply the acceptance and respect for who you are deep within yourself with all flaws and imperfections included. When you love yourself, you take care of yourself, you are aware of and honor your limitations, you listen to your needs and you respect your dreams enough to act on them. It illuminates, improves and deepens every aspect of your life.
But how can you find more happiness and learn self-love?
Well, to be able to learn self-love is a journey. You need to actively engage yourself in a lifestyle and activities that improve your love for yourself and increase genuine happiness in your life.
Here are 5 ways to learn to love yourself and be happy:
1. Know yourself and embrace who you are
It is important for your self-love that you get to know and understand yourself. You might have a number of flaws yet embracing them and moving forward can lead to happiness.
Be comfortable with standing before a mirror and loving your reflection. Love your body and all the things about it. If you do not like something about yourself and you cannot change it, embrace it. Stop being overly critical of yourself because nobody is perfect. Don’t compare yourself to others or worry about being accepted by others. Find happiness in your own uniqueness.
2. Avoid Perfectionism
The downside of perfectionism is that it sets unrealistic standards for your life. Social media has been a culprit in making people think that they have to have the perfect everything, perfect body, perfect job, perfect relationship, perfect life. Perfection does not exist for human beings and if you fall into the trap of what social media portrays as “what your life should look like”, there is a high chance you are going to face a lot of emotional issues, feelings of inadequacy and a lowered self-esteem.
For example, you might be following a popular social media personality to learn about how they achieve their goals. You might admire their work ethic and want to be like them. There is nothing wrong with doing this but you have to understand that sometimes, you do not know the full story as they only let you in on what they want to let you in on. They might be working with a team to achieve their goals while you are just an individual. You might find yourself trying to accomplish what a team of 5 people are doing in a week by yourself leading to your own burn out.
Therefore, it’s good to be realistic with yourself and do your best within your limitations. Imitating what you think your life should look like will only result into loss of motivation and frustration.
3. Practice Gratitude
Gratitude is defined as “the quality of being thankful, readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.” It is a very powerful thing. It is believed that gratitude turns what we have into enough.
People who regularly practice gratitude by taking time to notice and reflect upon their life and the things they are thankful for experience more positive emotions, feel more alive, sleep better and express more kindness to others.
What can you do to practice gratitude?
You need to be committed to do this by doing exercises, for example, start a gratitude journal. Every day, write 3 good things that happened to you that you are thankful for. They don’t have to big things, even the smallest of things will add positivity to your life when you are thankful for them. Be thankful for everything, fresh air, shelter, food, family, friends, smile from a stranger, that cute dress,…everything.
Show gratitude every day and see your life change.
4. Engage in Self-Care Habits
If you want to live a life of happiness and increase your self-love, self-care is a must. You need to nurture the mind, the body and the soul. What you put in your mind and body affects your happiness.
You need to take care of yourself physically, emotionally and spiritually.
To take care of your physical health, eat healthier, drink a lot of water, take care of your skin and hair and move your body by exercising, stretching and taking walks etc. Engage in fun activities too such as dancing, hiking and swimming.
For your emotional needs, regularly check in with yourself and ask what is going on with you? How are you feeling? Are you relaxed? Are you calm? Are you happy? What can you do to stay more emotionally grounded?
Practice positive thinking and positive self-talk to take care of yourself mentally. Positive self-talk makes you feel good about yourself and the things that are going on in your life. It increases your confidence and self-love. It can be hard to practice positive thinking and self-talk at first but the more you do it, the easier it becomes.
5. Let go of things you cannot control
Understand that there are certain things in life that are just beyond your control.
For example, you cannot control the outcome of situations, other people, other people’s choices and behaviour and tragedy.
Life isn’t about trying to control everything, it is about how you react to it. Instead of trying to control everything and everyone, do the best you can and let everything work itself out, it eventually does.
The path to happiness is one of letting go of what you cannot control and celebrating the life you have. It involves surrendering, without the despair of “what could have been”.
Try the above suggestions in your life and see how they positively impact you. Increase your self-love by staying committed to applying them and live a life of genuine happiness. Understand that it is a journey to learn self-love and some days will be good and some, not so good. As you practice every single day, it will get easier.