When scrolling through social media posts and articles, you’ve probably seen many that talked about “learning to love yourself.” We hear these words and read about them in self-help books, but somehow, so many of us have a problem with negative self-talk.
Instead of saying positive things, such as, “I can achieve my dreams” or “I can be my best self” or “I can do anything I put my mind to” or “I can reach my goals” or “I can achieve the body I dream of,” we say, “I can’t do it” or “I can never look like you” or “I can’t lose the stubborn weight.” Like the old saying goes, whether you think you can or can’t, you’re right. So much about being your best self and reaching your goals comes down to mindset.
Start By Being You
From an early age, we are programmed to be people pleasers. As children, we respect adults, do as we’re told, and follow the rules. While these are all necessary for being a well-behaved child who listens, so many of us take it too far and in adulthood, we get in the habit of always trying to please other people and we forget all about pleasing ourselves.
In Psychology Today, Deborah Ward wrote, “First, figure out what makes you feel good. It doesn’t matter what it is, but become aware of how you feel when you do things. Do you feel exhausted at work, but exhilarated when you’re in the garden?
“Do you feel joyful reading to your children? Fulfilled when you are writing poetry or volunteering? Find out what makes you feel good and do it, as often as you can. Feeling good is all the permission you need to do what you love to do. And the more you do those things, the happier you will be. If it means you have to give up something else, so be it.”
Ward’s advice to readers: “Do what you need to do to be you and don’t let anyone blame you, criticize you or talk you out of it because they think you are being selfish, silly, or delusional. Ignore them. You will feel better, you will be better able to really be there for others—and you will like yourself more. You may even love yourself.”
Your Body, Your Decision
Self-love doesn’t only apply to our emotions and spirituality; it has to do with our physical bodies as well. If you are considering plastic surgery and others are discouraging you or trying to talk you out of it, remember, it’s your body and you should do what makes YOU happy, which brings us to a quote from one our all-time favorite Hollywood legends:
“We are complete with our without a mate, with our without a child. We get to decide for ourselves what is beautiful when it comes to our bodies. That decision is ours and ours alone.” ~ Jennifer Aniston