Aliza Septimus, PsyD
Getting Your Inner Spark Back: 5 Tips to Loving Yourself Again
We are born knowing that we are infinitely lovable. Babies and toddlers demand love and attention. They ask to be held, they ask for toys and presents and they feel they deserve them. When we're very young, we simply somehow just "know" that we are amazing and deserve nothing but goodness.
But then something happens...
We get influenced by kids at school and various media outlets. We hit puberty and our hormones kick in and suddenly instead of being awesome and lovable, we believe we aren't good enough, smart enough, or good looking enough.
The good news is, you can fall in love with yourself all over again.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
MAKE TIME FOR YOURSELF
Little kids spend a lot of alone time playing. During this alone time, they are really connected to their inner world. The "us" in this inner world is the real us, not the us in the business suit or rush-hour traffic or grocery store line. Spend quality time just with you so you can reconnect to the "you" you've forgetten
SAY "NO" MORE OFTEN
When we constantly put others' needs before our own, we tell our subconscious mind over and over that we do not matter. If you are a people pleaser, get into the habit of saying no to others and yes to yourself more often.
DO WHAT YOU LOVE
Maybe when you were young you wanted to be a painter or singer or photographer, but an adult "talked some sense into you". There is no reason you can't explore these passions as a hobby now. Doing what you love is one of the best ways to love yourself more.
SPEAK THE TRUTH
When you constantly tell other people what they want to hear instead of telling the truth, you silence yourself. This, in turn, kicks your self-worth to the curb. Don't be afraid to always be authentic and truthful. Sure, you'll sometimes have to find graceful and tactful ways to share your truth with others, but it's the best way to love yourself.
When our self-worth is low or non-existent, attempting to love ourselves can feel impossible. If you suffer from self-esteem issues, speaking with someone you trust (a friend, family member, or therapist) can help you recognize where these issues came from and how to work through them to truly love yourself.