7 Ways to Finally Start Loving Yourself

May 9, 2016

We all have our quirks — every single one of us. The problems is, many of us see these beautiful bits of uniqueness as flaws, and societal ideals don’t help. We have a tendency to hone in on our imperfections, obsessing over them in a painful circle of self-loathing and self-doubt. But there is no need to hate on yourself! You are a beautiful, unique person. Try these 7 tips to start loving your awesome self and living joyously in your own skin.

1.Give up perfectionism.

Perfection is impossible. Sorry, but it’s the truth. While it’s great to try to achieve your best, the constant struggle for perfection will break you down and turn you into a whimpering, shadowy version of your beautiful, confident self. Perfection doesn’t exist, so stop manipulating your physical appearance and mental ideals to conform to someone else’s ideals of what is perfect. Being yourself is always enough.

2. Love your reflection.

When you look at yourself, try to avoid that whirlpool of self-doubt. My ears are too small for my head. Ugh, I’m breaking out on my chin. Why can’t my stomach be flatter? Pointing out your physical flaws is not going to do you any good. Instead, acknowledge the things you love about yourself. It may be difficult at first, especially if you’ve been hanging out in that whirlpool for too long, but with practice it will become easier and easier to embrace your imperfect reflection. Plus, the more you love your body, the more free you will be to morph into the self-assured, powerful person you’ve always wanted to be.

3. You are flawed, so be authentic.

Stop trying to become what others think you should be. Practice being uniquely you — stop manipulating your thoughts and actions to please those around you. That is just a mask, a way of hiding your true personality from the world. Take off the mask and experience the authenticity of your self. Real people are naturally drawn towards authenticity. If they aren’t, they are probably not people you want in your life anyways. Just stay true to yourself.

4. Feel no shame.

You are worthy, so stop bringing yourself down. Shame causes us to shut down rather than open up. Closing yourself off from the world only serves to increase your self-imposed shame and drag you farther from finding happiness with your self. By developing shame-resilience, a self-developed pattern of constructive and positive ways to embrace and grow from seemingly negative experiences, you can come out the other end of hard times feeling stronger and more open to the world — as opposed to the weak, closed nature that self-shaming encourages. To put it simple, keep looking on the bright side and keep knowing you’re good enough, even when things look bleak.

5. Get creative.

Laugh, sing, paint, dance, cook, play with Legos — do whatever creative venture feels right. The realm of creativity is often the first place where we allow ourselves to exist unencumbered by self-imposed standards. It’s a good place to start on your journey towards self-love. You don’t have to compare your work to that of others. You do not have to get it ‘right’. You simply allow your ideas and emotions to unfurl and exist in the world without judgement.

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