So much of society today is based around love, the search for love, finding the perfect love, but the basis for all love in this world should start with self love. Self love and self care are important aspects of living an emotionally healthy life. Unfortunately society has taught us that putting ourselves and our own needs as a priority is “selfish” and not the right way to live.
It is important in the hectic day to day way we live now as a culture to realize that if we only focus on others we tend to burn ourselves out. We cannot constantly be giving and loving to others without first loving and caring for ourselves if we want any long term balance.
Think of it as burning an oil lamp constantly without ever thinking about a need to refill it. It will eventually run out and you will be left in darkness.
There are many ways you can give love to yourself, such as meditation, journaling, yoga, Reiki, and massage. But instead of focusing on a one time gift to yourself, try having a self love practice every day. You don’t have to take hours out of your day to do it, if you practice it more often. And as with anything, the more you practice, the easier it will become.
The first thing to remember, no matter what way you choose to feed your soul, is that you must start with compassion for yourself. This can be very difficult. For many people we are taught that we are not worthy unless we are giving to others, or unless we are “proving” our worth by some kind of activity or action.
This is not true. You are worthy of love and compassion just for being you. As you are in this moment, without having to do anything or be any certain way, you are worthy of love and happiness.
Even if you don’t “believe it” in your heart, behave like you do and it will come eventually. There is a reason “fake it till you make it,” is an important mantra. It won’t take long if you truly give love to yourself before you will begin to believe you truly do deserve it.
Everyone is unique, so your version of self love and self care might look different that the next person’s. What you choose as your self-love activity isn’t as important as the way it makes you feel. Choose anything you like to do, go to the movies, listen to an album, read a book, as long as it makes you feel, happy, calm, relaxed or fulfilled. Any of these emotions will start to refill your tank. The important thing is that you seek out activities on a regular basis that make you laugh, or relax the tension in your shoulders, something that challenges your mind, or calms it, whichever is the most fulfilling thing for you.
The more you make yourself a priority, the more energy you will have for everything and everyone else.