How to Love Yourself, Steps 1-4.
Become aware. At first, don’t try to force yourself to like being around yourself. You’re still going to have that little voice in your head saying mean things to you. Things like “this is stupid” or “stop being so self-absorbed and just focus on getting done all these things you’re busy with” and probably the worst “why would you love yourself, you don’t deserve that.” These thoughts are nasty and it’s hard to push them away without letting them hurt you. So the first step is to become aware of them. When a thought like this pops in your head, don’t try to get rid of it, just pause for a moment and notice it. Notice that it came from you. Look at the words as if they’re on a paper. Accept that you just thought them, and then move on with your day.
When you start making a habit of noticing your negative self-talk, the next step is trying new things. Even if you’re busy or not in the mood to add new things to your life, everyone has time for this. It could be saying good morning to your barista, reading a book instead of going on your phone before bed, trying out a new hobby, stretching every morning, and so on. It doesn’t have to be anything big, or it can be. Just try something you’ve never done before. Maybe something that’s even a little out of character to the things you usually spend your time doing.
After a while, the thoughts you notice will stop affecting you because they become words that don’t have any value. By noticing them you will be taking away the emotion you previously would have attached to them. You will stop believing them. Because they are not true. I’ll say that again. Those negative thoughts you are having about yourself are not true. Now that you know this, you can start actively replacing them with positive thoughts. Compliment yourself in your head. Compliment others. Appreciate things. Be proud of yourself. Give yourself permission to enjoy things. Share the positivity you feel with others.
The hobbies and new things you incorporate into your life will not all be things you stick with and that’s ok. But the ones you enjoy, you can keep and these things will give you purpose and joy. And most importantly, you’ll begin to realize that the activities that “aren’t something you would do” actually are. Because we are not limited to being who we think we are. You are not the person you were three years ago, three days ago or three minutes ago. You might love something you used to hate and hate something you used to love. Start accepting that it’s ok to change. Stop restricting yourself to acting a certain way, believing certain things, wearing certain clothes all because it’s who you have always been. We are ever changing, and that is such a freeing concept.