Self-love isn’t about outer beauty. It’s much deeper than that.
Self-love is important for a healthy mind and body. It might not seem that important at first glance.. even selfish to some, but it has a huge impact on so many aspects of our lives. It influences our relationships, who we choose as friends and romances, how you are perceived at work, and the choices you make in your daily life. It impacts your inner health as well…
By filling your mind with negative and/or hateful energy, you can actually make yourself physically ill. Remember, the body hears everything the mind tells it. Stressing about lack of progress in the gym and beating yourself up mentally for the way your body looks (I chose this example because I know a lot of you who frequent my site are very interested in your health and fitness) can actually increase the hormone cortisol. An increase in cortisol can put your body in a catabolic state. A catabolic state is the destruction of cell life. This can cause muscle loss, tissue destruction, bone loss, and a weakened immune system. High cortisol levels can also make it harder to lose body fat, specifically in the abdominal region.
I was reading through some truly wonderful articles about the psychology behind self-love. As a psychology grad, I still have a passion for expanding my knowledge about human behavior and how the mind works. During my reading and research, I stumbled across this article by Deborah Khoshaba, Psy.D. on Psychology Today. Below is Khoshaba’s seven tips for self-love. To read her full article, please visit: A Seven-Step Prescription for Self-Love
Seven-Step Prescription for Self-Love by Deborah Khoshaba, Psy.D.
1. Become mindful. People who have more self-love tend to know what they think, feel and want. They are mindful of who they are and act on this knowledge, rather than on what others want for them.
2. Act on what you need rather than what you want. You love yourself when you can turn away from something that feels good and exciting to what you need to stay strong, centered, and moving forward in your life, instead. By staying focused on what you need, you turn away from automatic behavior patterns that get you into trouble, keep you stuck in the past, and lessen self-love.
3. Practice good self-care. You will love yourself more, when you take better care of your basic needs. People high in self-love nourish themselves daily through healthy activities, like sound nutrition, exercise, proper sleep, intimacy and healthy social interactions.
4. Set boundaries. You’ll love yourself more when you set limits or say no to work, love, or activities that deplete or harm you physically, emotionally and spiritually, or express poorly who you are.
5. Protect yourself. Bring the right people into your life. I love the term frenemies that I learned from my younger clients. It describes so well the type of “friends” who take pleasure in your pain and loss rather than in your happiness and success. My suggestion to you here: Get rid of them! There isn’t enough time in your life to waste on people who want to take away the shine on your face that says, “I genuinely love myself and life”. You will love and respect yourself more.
6. Forgive yourself. We humans can be so hard on ourselves. The downside of taking responsiblity for our actions is punishing ourselves too much for mistakes in learning and growing. You have to accept your humanness (the fact that you are not perfect), before you can truly love yourself. Practice being less hard on yourself when you make a mistake. Remember, there are no failures, if you have learned and grown from your mistakes; there are only lessons learned.
7. Live intentionally. You will accept and love yourself more, whatever is happening in your life, when you live with purpose and design. Your purpose doesn’t have to be crystal clear to you. If your intention is to live a meaningful and healthy life, you will make decisions that support this intention, and feel good about yourself when you succeed in this purpose. You will love yourself more if you see yourself accomplishing what you set out to do. You need to establish your living intentions, to do this.
There are more fantastic articles on Psychology Today! Make sure to check them out. Knowledge is power! =)