Is it time for more self-love and self-care?
As I scrolled through my Instagram feed last week, there were four posts in a row from women saying they had felt judged by others; they felt bad about their body, or they felt utterly rubbish when they looked in the mirror during that week. It makes me so sad that there are so many people struggling with these thoughts on a daily basis, me included.
We are so governed today by social media, which means that we have a constant comparison and such high expectations in all aspects of our life, so much so that it can be so difficult to come from a place of self-love all the time.
I know a few of you will nod along with me when I say, “The first thing you do in the morning is check social media.” In doing so, you’ve set the comparison from the moment you start your day with comments such as “they look great in that photo” “wow, I’m jealous of her life.”
A study done by The Butterfly Foundation in 2018 found that 73% of Australians wished they could change the way they look and 41.5% of people most of the time, or always, compare themselves to others on social media.
So, when we carry poor body self-esteem, it truly does impact on our self-worth and self-love and can begin to stop us fully living our life.
Self-love is so much more than treating yourself to a hot bubble bath or going for a walk in nature. It’s about finding that place truly from within where we look at our baggage and root through the nasties to find what we actually know to be true: ourselves, our whole selves, the ones we should love and focus on and not what other people think we should.
If it wasn’t for our limiting beliefs and these high expectations and social media comparisons, I am sure the problem wouldn’t exist. So, how do we solve the problem when we feel we have to deal with each of these on a daily basis?
I want to share a little exercise with you that you can do to start treating yourself like your best friend and work to come from a place of complete self-love and self-worth.
What I mean by “treating yourself like your best friend” is that we should consider how we speak to ourselves, because what we say and focus on,is exactly what we see and get. If your best friend asked you how she looked, how would you reply? Would it be positive, or would it be negative?
We have to absolutely believe and connect to what we’re saying to ourselves in a positive way so the purpose of treating yourself like you would your best friend is to reach a holistic love of yourself. If we love ourselves in the same way that we do other people, we are coming from a place of complete self-love. The respect, care, and attention you give your best friend, mom, or child will match what we give to ourselves.
The benefits of treating yourself like you would your best friend is that you will become increasingly nicer to yourself in all situations you go through. Just reflect over the past week and think of how many times you picked up on something you did wrong—a mistake you made at work, a date you completely forgot about, or the gym class that you missed. In each of these situations instead of dwelling on what has happened and seeing the negative, you should find the positives so that you don’t beat yourself up. Don’t spend the whole night worrying—forgive yourself and move on. This way the focus is put to better use. We focus on the things that serve us and not the things we should have left in the past.
You never, EVER look at your friend and think of how much you hate them, so why, oh why, should you do this to yourself? You need to remember that you are doing the best you can, with the resources you have right now and that you come to everything with the best intent.
Think about the good things; focus on them, celebrate them, and celebrate YOU!
Here is a simplified process to encourage you to treat yourself like your best friend.
First of all, grab a pen and paper and write 15 things you love about your body and why—anything from the top of your head to the tips of your toes. I know it may seem out of your comfort zone, but trust me, this is where the magic happens.
Your 15 things should reflect the things you love and the WHY behind all of them. It is because someone you love loves that thing? It is something you have always loved about yourself? Or is it an a-ha moment that you’ve just had as you’re sitting here right now? Something perhaps you have ever thought about, from your fingertips to the mole on your back?
Then, through this week, this month, this year, I want you to listen. I want you to listen to how you would speak to your best friend, son, daughter, parents, and grandparents.
How do you compliment them? What do you say? How do you say it?
How do you feel when you are giving the compliment?
Make a little note on your phone or grab a notepad to document each one. I want you to commit to doing this daily for two whole weeks. Then after the two weeks, I want you to look back and see how you can start complimenting yourself in the same way. Think about what you can say when you look in the mirror, when you complete a task, when you’re feeling proud of what you’ve done, when you put some lovely clothes on and feel fabulous!!! Where can you include these little compliments or post-it notes of confidence into your day to day life, just as you would do with your best friend.
Putting these on post-it notes around your house, car and even at work is my favorite thing to do.
The definition of self-love is “the belief you hold that you are a valuable and worthy person.” So isn’t it time we came from a place of value, love, happiness and worth for ourselves and bodies?