“The most important relationship in your life is the relationship you have with yourself. Because no matter what happens.. you will ALWAYS be with yourself.”
– Dianne Von Furstenberg
While it’s no question that relationships, whether it’s one we have with our significant other, our family or friends, are to be cherished, the most important and by far the longest relationship we will ever have in our life is actually one we have with ourselves.
After all, by learning to give love, acceptance, and compassion to ourselves, the more we feel whole and worthy and the more we have and are willing to offer to the world.
That said, I know firsthand that it can be extremely difficult to believe that we are worthy. Ever since we were kids, we have been told otherwise by our loved ones, bosses, colleagues, clients – and even strangers.
Nevertheless, this is precisely why it’s crucial for us to become our very own best friend. With so much vying ‘against’ us, we’ve got enough on our plate that we need all the support and love we can get.
Here, I’ll be sharing with you some simple yet effective ways that have personally helped me to cultivate and strengthen self-love. May these tips help you to become kinder and gentler to yourself too!
1. Make Time for Self-Care
Has fear of missing out or being disliked prevented you from being able to set some time for yourself?
Well, it’s time to start learning to say ‘no’ to things that you think do not add any value to your life.
By passing on events or added responsibilities that are not so important, it becomes much easier for you to make the time to do things that you actually enjoy.
Whether you choose to spend it by getting more sleep, going to an invigorating yoga class, or picking up a new hobby, it’s all up to you!
Practice self-care regularly by committing the time and effort you need to become the best version of yourself – because you’re truly worth it.
2. Connect with Your Inner Self
We may not want to admit it but most of us live our lives basing our values on our successes and failures.
Deep down, however, we know that these ‘things’ do not illustrate the whole picture of who we really are. So, let’s ingrain it into our heads that our self-worth does not equate to our net worth – and act accordingly.
One way we can effectively do this is to learn to connect with our inner self (the soul) through activities that quiet the mind and bring it to a state of peace and stillness such as meditation or journaling.
As Ma Jaya Sati Bhagavati, a renowned spiritual leader, beautifully said “quiet the mind and the soul will speak.”
3. Apply Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT)
Several years ago, a life coach who happens to be an EFT practitioner introduced me to Emotional Freedom Technique as a way to calm myself whenever I’m feeling stressed, anxious, or critical of myself.
Though its name may appear rather scientific, it’s actually a pretty simple healing tool where we tap ourselves on specific parts of the body (acupressure) while repeating an affirmation.
The great thing about this technique is that it can be done just about anywhere as it only requires a bit of time, our fingers, and a ‘mantra’ or affirmation.
I’ve personally found it to be quick and effective in helping me to release negative energy when I’m feeling extreme emotions and to regain a sense of calm and balance.
4. Stop Playing the Comparison Game
We’re all familiar with the comparison game, it’s that dreadful yet addictive game where we compare ourselves with practically everyone we know and even those we don’t!
The truth is, each and every single one of us is special and we all have our own unique purpose and path in life. Comparison is the ‘thief’ of joy and it prevents us from counting our blessings and embracing our already beautiful lives.
Instead of comparing our journey to the journey of others, we should focus on being grateful for who we are and what we already have.
Energy flows where attention goes. The more you recognize who you are and what you already have, the more abundance and blessings you will manifest in your life.
5. Give Up the Need for Approval from Others
“Old habits die hard,” they say, and from my own experience, I admit that it’s not that easy to let go our need of approval. But then again, it’s certainly possible.
We can start to do this by choosing to consistently speak our truth. When you believe in an idea or have an opinion that differs from those around you – stand by it.
Be aware when you are tempted to conform to someone’s else’s opinion just for the sake of having them on your side or obtain their approval and consciously choose to resist it.
In order for us to live our very best lives, we must learn to be independent of the good opinion of others.
This means that we need to learn to make choices and take actions that are unapologetically true to who we are.
After all, the only validation we truly need is one that we give to ourselves so stop living your life trying to impress others. Live your life trying to impress yourself instead!