February echoes all things love. However, I’m going to focus on self love with this guide. Sometimes our days (or weeks are filled with challenges and setbacks. Or we try overcompensate productivity to complete an idealized goal for the validation of feeling accomplished. This goes back to refilling our cup before we start to run on empty. We can’t neglect the most important part of our life: our self.
So what is self love? Here’s a quick summation:“Self-love is a state of appreciation for oneself that grows from actions that support our physical, psychological and spiritual growth”
In my opinion self love is something we should integrate everyday. It doesn’t have to be extravagant nor should you feel like it must be a time consuming or romanticized vision that seems unattainable. The way someone cultivates self love may not be the same as mine or yours and that okay. So whether you decide to take a day in February to buy yourself some chocolates and wine, creating a gratitude list, or having a good cry to feel + release those emotions, remember that it truly does matter.
I am sharing some ideas that anyone can include for themselves, even if its for one day of the week. Just remember to cherish yourself, love yourself, and be honest with yourself.
Create a morning and/or nighttime routine. I’ve recently stuck to following my routine that it’s a no longer a task but an extension of my day. In the morning I wake up, walk my dog, then brew some coffee. I’ll grab a quick breakfast like oatmeal and head to my room. Here I’ll unwind and wake at my own pace. Sometimes I’ll play a podcast or crochet for a bit if there’s some time. The point is I eliminate the stress of feeling rushed. I go at my own pace and start my day with a clear mindset.
Find your personal empowering anthem. Guess what, you should want the best for yourself. I can thank Ariana Grande for releasing several jams that I play when I want a boost of self confidence. Or if I need to say “thank u next” to whatever situation is not serving me. Whether it’s 7 rings or another track of choice, lean into it when you need that mood boost or quick dance off. I also have a Spotify playlist for those days when you want to feel the feels and give yourself some kinds through verse.
Breathin’When I feel like I need a break I’ll find at least 5 minutes to just sit and breathe. Simple as that. But it’s a practice because during whatever amount of time I have, I just focus on my breath. I work on shutting off the racing thoughts or any ache going on. For that short session I tell myself it’s okay to just be in that moment. Because it is okay to catch up with yourself.
Express Love.Explore what you love about yourself. I like writing down weekly lists that can include: qualities I like about myself, lessons I have learned, how I can improve with some personal growth, plans I want to create into reality. If not by hand you can definitely involve verbal expressions. Try spending time with loved ones, and yes get that face mask/bubble bath/moment of silence going.
Practice Prioritizing Yourself.We can repeat all the positive statements we want and develop mindset but it’s importance to put that mindset into action. I’m a people-pleaser so putting myself first felt like a lesson I could never really grasp. Thankfully I have taken steps to advocate for myself and nourish myself. Ideas you can do: take yourself on a self-date, cook yourself a good meal, give yourself a pep talk and be your own cheerleader.
Forgive and Recharge– Some of us are just too hard on ourselves. Some of us let the concept of failure become the endgame, but truly it’s not. We are all going to have rough days, weeks, moments. I can’t speak for every situation but truly check in with yourself and allow yourself to forgive yourself. Address whatever you feel you didn’t accomplish/finish/pursue and don’t stop at forgiveness – remember to recharge. Give yourself permission to grow. Recognize that there is no such thing as perfect. Seek help by means of therapy or community if necessary. Remember that what you may perceive as a flaw, does not define or limit you. Forgiving yourself along the way does not mean you are inadequate in some way, it means you’re allowing yourself to grow and evolve from challenges and obstacles.