The Definition of Self Love: 7 Ways To Treat Yourself Better

self love

You are sitting on a plane ready to fly to a new destination. The doors are closing and the airplane slowly starts down the runway preparing for takeoff. You buckle your seatbelt and push your bag under the seat in front of you. You hear the announcement: “In case of loss of cabin pressure, put on your own mask first before assisting others.” Same drill, every time.

But why do they need to remind you to take care of yourself first?

I believe it’s because most people have a big heart and they want to assist others. In crises, ordinary people become heroes.They sacrifice themselves to save strangers. This is a necessary reminder that even in an emergency, and even if you want to save the world, without helping yourself first, you won’t be able to help others.

Self care is self love. When I was googling the definition of self love, the first definition that popped up was:

“Self love: regard for one’s own well-being and happiness”

Well-being looks like taking care of your mind, body and spirit. It looks like joy and happiness and doing things that fulfill you and make you smile.

Some people mistakenly confusing self love with selfishness. But in my book, It is not selfish to love yourself, it is selfish not to.  

Here are seven ways you can start loving yourself more, right now. 

1. Nourish Yourself

The N in the acronym O.R.I.O.N from my system Orion’s Method stands for Nourishing your body, mind, and spirit.

Nourish Your Body. Eating organic fruits and veggies and clean foods. You can start simple by adding a green smoothie to your diet to give your body the nutrients it craves. Also try to avoid processed foods that mess up your hormones and add toxins to your body, leaving you feeling sluggish and foggy.

Nourish Your Mind. Open your mind to learning new things, reading, and having deep conversations with interesting people. You are the average of the 5 people you hang out with the most, so be discerning with the people you spend the most time with. I always love hanging out with people that are smarter than me, because it makes my mind sharper.

Nourish Your Spirit. Set aside some time for yourself each day to focus on your dreams and desires and connect to your higher power. It may just be 15 minutes to meditate, or half an hour to write down your thoughts in your journal. Remember, this is your time to clear your head and focus on you. The clearer and more centered you are, the more you will be able to be there for others.

2. Know Who You Are

A large part of your life is spent in the shadows of others: parents, teachers, work colleagues, domineering friends. How much of who you are is an adaptation of other’s ideas and belief systems? Who are you in your fullest expression?

Fear of being yourself can leave you bobbing like a boat in a storm with no direction. Learning to know and love yourself is like grabbing hold of the rudder with both hands—it can make navigating those rough waters so much easier.

An exercise I love doing with my clients is to have them write down all the times in their lives where they achieved something extraordinary or overcame something difficult.

When you journal in this way you became present to the amazing human being that you are and you love and respect yourself even more.

3. Speak Up for Yourself

Conflict is a part of life and always will be. Practicing effective communication and standing up to what you need is key. There is more long-term damage in trying to please others than speaking your truth. It might be hard, but it is worth it because no one will ever care for your well-being more than you. Maybe your mother… but you know what I mean. 🙂

4. Block your Inner Critic

There are two critical voices in your head: one you internalize from someone else’s criticism (and run it on a loop in your head until it becomes part of who you are) and the other one is your own negative voice. I will argue that the latter is harsher.

Be mindful of the things you say to yourself when no one else is listening. If one of the negative voices show up, notice it and let it go. Creating this awareness is the first step to making self love your default state.  

5. Invest Your Time Wisely

Negative people can sap your energy and feed your insecurities. One of the most loving things you can do for yourself is to make sure your precious time is spent with the right people.

Some people want to give you energy and some want to steal your juice. Don’t let them!

Remember, you don’t owe anyone your time, no matter how guilty they might make you feel. Love yourself, and invest your time in those who love you back.

6. Accept All Your Emotions.

These days, our lives are so curated through social media that we often forget that life isn’t all tropical beaches and cute puppies. You are going to experience pain and sadness in your life, and that’s okay. Allow yourself to feel your emotions to the fullest, and than let the negativity go. As you get better and managing your emotions, you will stay in negative states for less and less time.

Sometimes you need to be strong, but it’s okay to admit that you’re also fragile, and seek comfort, support, and love. Give yourself the time you need to mourn and work through your emotions, and come to peace with rejection, hurt, and sorrow.

7. Embrace Yourself, and Let Love In

We all want to be loved, but for some, the hardest thing is to accept love and kindness when it’s offered. Reassure yourself that you’re worth it, and learn how to open yourself up and say “Yes!”

When someone gives you a compliment, simply say, “Thank you.” Don’t resort to false modesty, or talk yourself out of it. When someone offers you help, take it. Don’t suffer in silence.

Rest assured, there is more than enough love in the world to go around. Open up your heart, and let it in.

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