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There are many ways to love yourself. And while some people think that’s narcissistic, I say it’s essential.
Self-love isn’t selfish or conceited—it’s a way of making sure you have the emotional reserves to take care of others and share the love you have with them.
In fact, it is so important that if all else fails, it can be your saving grace when everything else feels like it’s falling apart around you.
We should all strive for it, which starts with learning about how it works and how we can practice this skill every day with self love exercises.
Understanding your own self love language is a good place to start too.
1. Talk to Yourself Like a Best Friend
So, you want to love yourself. This is a great first step!
Now, let’s get down to the nitty-gritty of how to actually do that.
When it comes to self-love, it’s important to start by being kind and compassionate as often as possible.
To do this, you have to be willing not only to talk about your feelings but also acknowledge them when they arise—and they will arise at some point in your life (as long as we’re talking about an honest relationship with yourself).
The best way I’ve found for doing this is by treating myself like I would my best friend: honest yet open-minded and supportive of their feelings.
Don’t be afraid of being honest; communicate with yourself truthfully.
2. Practice Gratitude Daily
Learning to love yourself is an inside job.
The key to loving yourself is to be grateful for the things you have and acknowledge the things you don’t have.
If you can do this, it will change your life.
As humans, we tend to focus more on what we don’t like about ourselves or the world around us — this leads to feelings of despair and hopelessness.
But when we focus on things that make us happy and grateful for what we do have, we naturally feel better about ourselves and our lives.
3. Use Positive Affirmations
Positive affirmations are a simple and effective way to change your perspective on life.
In fact, studies show that people who use positive affirmations on a regular basis have become more optimistic, happy, and confident.
A positive affirmation is a statement that affirms your personal power, such as, “I am powerful,” or “I am beautiful.”
By repeating positive affirmations, you’re essentially training your mind to believe them.
4. Acknowledge Your Emotions
Acknowledging emotions is different from suppressing them.
When you suppress an emotion, you are trying to ignore it or pretend it isn’t happening.
This can often lead to feelings of frustration and guilt because you aren’t dealing with your emotions in the right way.
Acknowledge your emotions by noticing what they feel like in your body, expressing them in words, and accepting them as a part of life.
When you acknowledge your emotions, accept that they exist without judging yourself for feeling that way.
This will help you take action more effectively because being able to identify how you’re feeling helps make decisions easier when faced with challenging situations like work or relationships at home.
5. Practice Radical Acceptance
Radical acceptance is not the same thing as resignation.
Resignation means giving up on a goal or aspiration, but radical acceptance simply means accepting that you may never achieve those goals and embracing whatever happens instead.
Radical acceptance is also not giving up because you’re afraid to fail.
Many of us are afraid of failure and will avoid taking risks because we’re worried about what people might think of us if we fail (or succeed).
But, if your goal is worth having, then it’s worth doing everything in your power to achieve it—even if that means risking failure along the way!
The most important thing to understand about radical acceptance is that it should be an active process rather than a passive one: You have to actively choose which parts of reality are unacceptable, then make decisions based on those choices (and accept any consequences).
6. Journal for Self Love
It’s a simple process where you write in your journal and reflect on what you’ve done for yourself that day.
In order for this process to work, you must be honest with yourself about what you did for yourself each day and how it made you feel.
If there are days when nothing seems to make a difference, don’t worry about it — just keep going and trust that things will improve over time.
Check out this list of premade bullet journals that will guide you along.
7. Stop Comparing Yourself to Others
One of the biggest obstacles to self love is comparing yourself to others.
Comparison is the thief of joy, as the saying goes.
We are constantly bombarded with images of perfect bodies, perfect relationships, and perfect lives.
But the truth is, everyone has their own story and everyone’s story is different.
The only person whom you should be comparing to is your own previous self.
What do you want your body to look like? What kind of health do you want? Do you want to be able to run a marathon or do push-ups? Do you want to feel free from anxiety and depression or do you want to feel happy every day?
You can get there by taking small steps each day and making sure that those steps are in line with what makes you happy and healthy.
8. Focus on the Positive
When we focus on what we’re doing wrong, we often end up feeling like there’s no way out of our problems.
But when we focus on what we’re doing right — even if it’s just getting through one day — we can feel like there are so many possibilities ahead of us.
This means that when you are feeling down about yourself, don’t think of all the things you have done wrong in life and how many mistakes you have made.
When you start focusing on all of your strengths and accomplishments instead of your weaknesses, then it becomes easier to love yourself.
9. Focus on Personal Growth
Take some time every day to reflect on your life.
Ask yourself: What are you doing to improve yourself? What are you doing to improve your relationships? What are you doing to improve your health? What are you doing to improve your finances?
These are questions that will stimulate your mind to think deeper and have a glow up in the process (if you haven’t).
Incorporate the answers into a routine that works for you, and make sure it’s part of every day.
You’ll feel better about yourself, and the people around you will feel better too!
10. Declutter Your Space
Make sure that your physical space is in line with the way that you want to feel.
You might feel like having a lot of stuff around you makes you more productive or creative, but if it’s causing stress and anxiety in your life, then it is time for some spring cleaning!
You can start by taking stock of all the things that are cluttering up your living space.
Then go through each item one by one: ask yourself if this thing brings me joy? How often do I use it? Do I even need this thing?
If not, then get rid of it!
Once everything has been cleared out, take a moment to appreciate what is left behind.
This is where self love comes into play—it’s easy for us humans to get caught up in what we don’t have rather than appreciating all that we do have.
11. Start to Eat Healthily
A healthy body is important for self-love.
If you are overweight and/or out of shape, you will feel worse about yourself, which can lead to low self-esteem.
You may also be carrying around extra weight that could cause health problems later in life.
Start eating healthier today by making simple small changes such as:
- Switching from regular soda to diet soda, or get rid of it completely!
- Choosing water instead of juice or soda at restaurants when dining out with friends
- Cutting back on junk food and snack foods
12. Exercise Regularly
A great way to start loving yourself more is by engaging in physical exercises that you love.
Take a moment to think about what activities bring you joy and excitement.
Is there something that you enjoy doing outside of work or school? Is there a type of exercise that makes you feel good?
Maybe it’s yoga, or maybe it’s swimming, or perhaps it’s running.
Think about the reasons why you want to do a particular activity and use that as motivation to get started!
13. Make Use of The Emotional Freedom Technique
The Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) is a form of acupressure that works by tapping on specific meridian points while you repeat positive affirmations.
It’s a great tool for stress relief and emotional release, and it can be very effective in helping you overcome negative emotions like anger, fear, anxiety, sadness, and jealousy.
The technique is particularly useful for people who have trouble getting rid of bad habits because it can help them change the way they see themselves and their lives.
Learn the techniques and EFT affirmations to get started.
14. Learn Something New
Learning something new is a great way to boost your self-esteem.
You’ll learn new things about yourself, your interests, and the world around you.
It’s also an opportunity to try out a new hobby or skill, which can be very rewarding.
And you probably know: The best way to learn something new is to do it!
If you’re interested in learning a foreign language, sign up for a class or download some free language learning apps on your phone.
If you’re interested in learning how to cook healthy meals, buy some cookbooks and get cooking!
Learning something new can also help you meet new people with similar interests.
For example, if you’ve always wanted to learn how to play golf and meet other people who play golf, then join a local club and go out with them every weekend!
15. Don’t Be Afraid to Say No
Saying no is an act of self-love.
It doesn’t mean you’re selfish or rude, it just means that you are confident enough in your own values and need to say no when something doesn’t align with them.
Saying no to a request can be difficult for many people, but it’s a sign of respect and confidence in yourself if done with intent.
If someone asks you to do something that makes you uncomfortable or doesn’t fit into your priorities, don’t feel bad about saying no.
Instead of feeling guilty about not being able to help out as much as they need, simply decline politely with your own reasons, for example: “I wish I could help with that project right now, but I’ve got my own deadlines coming up soon and will be too busy.”
16. Be Open to Change
The world is changing, and so are you.
You can’t control the world around you, but you can control how your own life unfolds.
You have the power to choose what kind of person you’ll be, even if it’s just for today or tomorrow.
And who knows?
Maybe if we all start making small changes now, they’ll add up to something big!
Don’t be afraid of change—it’s part of life!
Sometimes it will happen unexpectedly and sometimes it will come from within yourself as an idea that needs exploring.
Whatever happens in your life, try not to get stuck in one way of being because there may be other ways out there that could make things better.
17. Practice Mindfulness
Mindfulness is the practice of being fully present and aware.
It can be practiced through meditation, yoga, and affirmations, but there are many other ways to bring mindfulness into your life.
Here’s an idea for incorporating mindfulness into your daily routine:
Take a mindful shower. Pay attention to each part of your body as you wash it, from head to toe. Notice how warm or cold the water feels on different parts of your body, and how much pressure you’re using with the showerhead or loofah. Take time to feel relaxed and peaceful while getting clean.
By practicing mindfulness, you will be able to notice your feelings, thoughts, and behaviors without judging them as good or bad.
This allows you to see things clearly without emotional attachment or judgmental thinking.
It also helps you connect with yourself on a deeper level so that you can understand what makes you happy and how to get there.
Check out this list of mindfulness affirmations to get started.
18. Surround Yourself With People Who Love You Unconditionally
To truly love yourself, it helps to have a strong support network.
The more people you know that are willing to lend their shoulders when the going gets tough, the better off you’ll be.
A good friend can listen to your problems and offer advice without judgment or criticism; they’re there for you when your self-confidence takes a hit.
They remind you that although things aren’t perfect right now, they will get better as long as there’s hope in your heart.
Consider hosting a self care party too!
19. Write a Love Letter to Yourself
Having a supportive family is also important because they encourage us from an early age to believe in ourselves—to think positively about our abilities and potential rather than focusing on our shortcomings.
Write down all the things that made you happy and loved, and write down all the things that you love about yourself, all your accomplishments, and what makes you feel good.
I recommend that you write in the third person, so when you read it later on, it feels like someone is telling you all those things.
Another tip I have for you is to start off sentences with words like “I love how you” and “I am so proud of you for”.
It doesn’t have to be long and complicated.
Just be honest and be clear about the things you love about yourself!
You’re the most important person in your life, so it makes perfect sense to write yourself a love letter, don’t you think?
20. Do Something Nice for Someone Else
Helping others makes us happier and more satisfied with life, so doing something kind for those around you will help boost your mood.
When we do that, it helps us become more compassionate and empathetic toward others, and you will be surprised how much love you will get back!
This can be as simple as holding the door open for someone or helping an elderly person cross the street.
Doing something nice for others will make you feel good about yourself because you know that you made someone else’s day better.
21. Practice Self Care
Self-care is all about taking care of yourself so that you can be at your best and live your best life, and it’s interesting to note that there are several types of self care that we can look into.
Take time for yourself every day.
It doesn’t matter if it’s only 5 minutes or an hour, just make sure that you give yourself some “me time” every day.
22. Don’t Blame Yourself for Your Mistakes
Stop blaming yourself for everything that goes wrong in your life and forgive yourself for the times you fail.
When you make a mistake, remember that it is not the end of the world.
You are human and you are not perfect, but that does not mean that you should give up on yourself or allow yourself to feel worthless.
Instead, take responsibility for your actions, and don’t wallow in guilt or regret.
Forgive yourself and move on.
If you make a mistake, learn from it and start again with a fresh perspective and attitude.
In Conclusion: Self Love Exercises
All of these self-love exercises can be done at any time.
You don’t have to wait until you’re feeling good about yourself in order to practice them, or particularly when you need some self-care motivation.
This is especially important because if you wait until then, you may never get around to doing them!
So just start now and keep going until you feel like your life has made a positive change–and that’s the point right?