If I’ve learned anything in this life, it’s that we set the tone for how other people treat us. If we love ourselves and know we deserve the very best, we won’t settle unless we are receiving the very best. If we lack in self-love and question our worth, we are going to accept treatment that is less than what we deserve.
It only took me 28 years to figure this out. I could choose to be frustrated that it took me as long as it did, or I can spend the rest of my life accepting the love I deserve and letting go of the negativity. I have personally made it a goal to help as many people as possible realize their worth. The faster you learn to love yourself, the faster you start living life on your terms.
So how do you learn to love yourself when you have struggled with this for so long? Well, first thing is first. You have to stop talking negatively about yourself. If you struggle with positive affirmations, I recommend faking it until you make it. For every negative thought that slips, replace it with three positives. Make a list of things you find special about yourself. Maybe it’s your smile, or maybe it’s the way you tend to make friends everywhere you go. Whatever it is, big or small, write it down. Start a journal of self-love. Only your positive feelings will be expressed and you can always go back to it on days you need a reminder.
Treat your body like the temple it is. I was never one to really care much about fitness or clean eating. However, my closest friends started finding fitness routines and I noticed how much happier they were. I personally had no idea where to start. Finally, after having my heart played like a violin for nearly two years, I walked away from an unhealthy relationship.
Instead of turning to a bottle of wine and a massive bowl of Ben and Jerry’s, I took up kickboxing. Hardest thing I have ever done but the support I found within the instructors and classmates was out of this world. Plus, the better I felt, the less likely I was to want to put bad things into my body.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help. I am a firm believer that what you think of yourself is what is most important; however, sometimes you need an outsider’s view on what makes you special. Don’t hesitate to go to the people who know you best when you need a pep talk. Every once in a while, I’ll have a moment where I’m just second guessing everything about myself. I don’t see the good in myself no matter how hard I try. So, I turn to a couple of my closest friends that usually remind me that I am a sparkly, magical unicorn and I need to start acting like it.
Ultimately, it’s you that gets the say on how people treat you. So set the bar as high as you can. When you are working as hard as you are to treat yourself better, you’re not going to put up with someone treating you badly.
Many times we put up with less than satisfying relationships because we feel obligated. Well, guess what! The only obligation you have is to yourself and once you figure that out, the rest comes easier. Keep your close friends close and let go of the relationships in your life that cause uneasy feelings and unneeded stress.
I could probably write to you all day about ways to help you learn to love yourself but I need you to know that this isn’t going to be a transformation that happens overnight. This will take time and you will likely fall apart before you fall together.
But that’s how you know you’re growing and becoming a stronger, happier version of yourself. The biggest part of the transformation is usually right when you are about to lose focus and give up. So keep pushing through. Don’t stop. You’re going to find a level of happiness you only ever dreamed of. That’s a promise.