Oh, Valentine’s Day… It is THE corniest holiday and if you’re #SingleLikeMe, it’s either a bummer or just another day. I am not embarrassed to admit I want to participate in this holiday too! This year, instead of swooping in on marked down candy*, I am taking time to participate in a more meaningful way. I set aside time to reflect on self love and developed a few journal prompts to help jumpstart your self love journey too!
*Just kidding. I am going IN.
What is Self Love?
At the core of self love is compassion, forgiveness, and permission. It is not the same as self care (more on this later). The first step toward self love is thinking of your “self” as a person who is worthy of good.
You deserve kindness, remarkable opportunities, positive energy, supportive friends, and lots of love in your life.
You deserve good. Why?
Because you are you.
Sure, you are imperfect. Maybe you take out your problems on others. Are you selfish? Petty and manipulative? Do you steal tweets? Did you vote for the other guy?
You are still deserving of goodness. All of these not-so-great parts of yourself are easy to focus on and use as a reason to resist all the goodness that awaits you.
Instead of punishing yourself for your flaws, try to practice self compassion. Confront your not-so-great parts and get to the root of these issues. In my experience, the parts of you that are petty, lazy (though I don’t believe in laziness), selfish, etc. are symptoms of a deeper issues such as anxiety, insecurity, depression, trauma, and more.
Self Love vs Self Care
Self love is distinct from self care. In my opinion, self care is a conduit to self love. One is more action based, the other is an internal process aimed at shifting your mindset. Self care is about creating time and rituals that encourage you to take pause and de-stress. Self love is about developing compassion for yourself and accepting all of your parts – both great and not so great – and genuinely appreciating yourself as you are.
Self love is understanding you are worthy. You are enough. The universe conspired to create you – and the universe is ready to give you all that is good, but only if you’re willing to let love in.
For me, it took years of therapy and quite a bit of personal development to get to a place where I am in love with myself as a person. Do I always LIKE myself? No. Sometimes I am selfish and too harsh on people. Sometimes I don’t speak up when I should. There are days I can’t look at my reflection without picking myself apart. But that doesn’t change how I feel about my “self”.
(I can’t wait to meet someone I love as much as me :P)
Not everyone gets to this point. There are plenty of people who reach old age that have a million hang ups, relationship issues, and a myriad of unresolved personal issues. It takes self awareness and WORK to fall in love with yourself – but you’re worth it.
If you’re interested in falling in love with yourself, here are a few journal prompts to help explore where you stand with your self.
Why are you worthy of love?
What do you need to be forgiven for?
How can you bring more “good” into your life?
Radical Self Love by Gala Darling: This book helped give me the courage to dream of a bigger, more colorful life. It’s a well-designed book with touching personal anecdotes based on Gala’s website galadarling.com
“Sometimes, I feel discriminated against, but it does not make me angry. It merely astonishes me. How can any deny themselves the pleasure of my company? It’s beyond me.” ― Zora Neale Hurston