Love is the foundation of everything we build in this world. If you are building something, whether it is a family, friendship, career, romantic relationship, business, or art, without love, it will fall apart.
Love is an act of kindness. It is an acceptance without judgement and a support with no strings attach. It is to accept flaws of others and yet support and encourage them to grow. Everyone has their own definition of love. One of the major misconceptions of love is to think that it means to control others and/or is to sacrifice self for others. The reason why relationships built on those definition do not work out in a long run is because it is unsustainable.
There are many ways to show how you love someone and the act of service is one of them. However, in some cultures, women are supposed to take care of others before taking care of themselves. In my opinion, the most important way to have love in your life is to love yourself. Just like how you cannot help a family or friend in need if you do not have the resources or means, you cannot love others until you love yourself first. Cultivating a relationship with yourself is crucial for your well-being.
- Why should you love yourself?
Hate is a negative feeling that will impact your health. Life is better when you love yourself because it helps you grow to be a better person and gain self-confidence. Loving yourself allows you to be a self advocate which is important because only you know your needs better than anyone else. Additionally, only you can complete yourself (not your better half).
- How do you love yourself?
Loving yourself doesn’t just mean buying a whole bunch of chocolate for yourself or spending money on self. Self love means accepting yourself, allowing yourself to change and grow by removing yourself from the situation that doesn’t allow you to grow to become a better person. It means to cultivate a good relationship with yourself.
- Reflect: Take a time to reflect on your life. Reflection allows you to realize the mistakes you might have made, regrets you might have had, grudges you might have held for too long which ruined your mental health, maybe you stayed in a wrong job or a relationship for far too long. Maybe you let others take advantage of you, maybe you neglected your health, maybe you hung out with the wrong crowd, maybe you put too much energy into mending the relationships that would never work out.
- Forgive: Once you are done reflecting, it is important to treat yourself with the kindness and forgive yourself. Whether it is a mistake made by you or if you were wronged, it is important to let go and move on.
- Choose to Change: If you do not like how things are, change it. Remember that you have a choice to change. You can choose to make your life better, choose to eat healthy, choose to change the way you think, and choose to remove negativity from your life. Knowing that you have a choice is a liberating feeling.
- Self Compassion and Love: Take care of your body and take care of those who are important to you. It is important to let others love you just as much as loving yourself and others. Let others care for you without being dependent or burden on them.
- Repeat: We learn and we forget. Sometimes we cruise through life without realizing where we are headed. So, repeat this process of loving yourself every so often
Hope you celebrate this valentine’s day by learning to love yourself ❤️