A lot of people tend to think self-care and self-love are the same things. Self-care is a way to make sure you’re getting the time you need to feel at peace, whether it’s spending the night in, meditating instead of going out with friends or going to bed early instead of watching one more episode on Netflix.
On the other hand, Self- Love is about showing yourself gratitude and acceptance. Self-Love is like a pep talk with yourself. Throwing away your scale, or letting go of that “comparison” mindset. Self-love means loving yourself with no apologies, whereas self-care is about taking the time to feel good in the skin you’re in.
While these two are VERY different. They’re both necessary to live a healthy, and fulfilled lifestyle. Self-care allows you to maintain a healthy relationship with yourself rather than beating yourself up over the little things. We all know how uncomfortable it feels when we’ve worked non-stop and had no time for ourselves, other than showering and hopping into bed. Practicing self-care helps you refocus your brain, just as meditating would.
Self-love is totally a mindset. Just like going to the gym, eating healthy, waking up early, etc. It’s a full commitment that we give OURSELVES the same level of respect, kindness, and comfort that we always give to the people around us. Self-love means loving ourselves unconditionally, regardless of where we are in our lives.
It’s not only about loving ourselves more when that pimple on your face FINALLY goes away or you lose ten pounds. It’s about setting the intention to love ourselves now…in this present moment.
Practicing self-love also means we love ourselves through not just our wins, but our losses as well. Self-love says we ARE worthy, lovable and whole. No matter what ANYONE says.
The hardest part is knowing your worth. Knowing that you are capable of whatever comes to your mind. That you can do ANYTHING you set your mind to. It’s almost like the angel and the devil that sit on your shoulders. Don’t listen to that little voice in your head that says: “You CAN’T win that race!” or “You CAN’T get up and go to the gym!” Please know that you CAN. A few years ago, this was my problem. I never knew my worth. My Uncle would always tell me, “Do not let anyone define YOU, Chelsea Michelle. You are deserving of love, just as much as the next person.”
Things can be easier said than done when it comes to self-improvement and changing from within. Waking up one morning and deciding, “I think I’ll love myself today,” is just the first step. The action itself, the loving, that’s the challenging part. Like any other habit that forms, the more we repeat these actions of self-love, the more this mindset becomes part of our daily routine.
So what better way to form a good habit than by celebrating yourself with acts of self-love. Check out the list below for a few ways that I personally like to practice loving myself.
- Make room for healthier habits.
You already know the first tip I am going to suggest. Start TRULY caring for yourself by filling your body with the nutrition that it needs and exercise. Do stuff, not to “get it done” or because you “have to,” but because YOU care about YOU. Don’t feel like going to the gym? Then maybe put on a positive, feel good, podcast and go for a brisk walk. Create habits that are healthy, not just mentally and physically but also emotionally as well.
2. Surround yourself with people you feel good with.
My Paw ALWAYS told me, “Chelsea, you can’t expect to soar with the eagles while sitting with the turkeys.” I never knew what he meant until I got older. We all outgrow relationships. Just because you’ve been friends doesn’t mean you need to keep spending time together. Just because you’re taking a break from someone, doesn’t mean you won’t be close again. Be picky about YOUR time and who you spend it with. Don’t give it away because you are bored. (That’s not nice either, to you or the other person).
- Pick up a hobby:
I know what you’re thinking… “I don’t have time for a hobby!” You do. I live by the famous quote, “Carpe Diem.” Wake up an hour earlier, or maybe even go to sleep an hour later. SEIZE THE DAY! Trust me, you’ll feel better about YOURSELF if you take the time to learn more about YOU. Recently, I went to my local Guitar Center and decided to pick up the ukulele. Yes, I said it. A ukulele. It definitely has been challenging. I really don’t know what I was thinking of trying to pick up a string instrument since I was a piano player when I was younger but it’s fun! You don’t have to pick up an instrument, you could learn how to sew. Spring is around the corner so start growing a garden. You could even take up one of my other favorite hobbies: baking. Whatever it is that you find interesting… go out and try it. You’ll never know what else you might be good at until you try!
4. Think about all the good in your life and practice gratitude:
I used to catch myself saying, “Wow. That person is younger than me, look where they are, look what they’re doing.” Everyone moves at different paces in life. Some faster, some slower. You have got to remember YOU ARE RIGHT WHERE YOU ARE SUPPOSE TO BE. Take a few minutes and remember all the good in your life and what accomplishments YOU have made. Maybe you got a promotion at work or just missed that huge pothole in the middle of Alpine Road. Just remember… you have it good kid, better than some.
5. Clean out your closet.
Tidying is more therapeutic than you might think and get rid of old things will make room for new ones to come into your life. I’ve always been a clothes hoarder…until most recently. My boss told me she cleaned out her closet, and between her and her daughter, they donated 11 bags of clothes to Goodwill! It inspired me to do the same. Though I didn’t have THAT many… I still had 4 bags of clothes to donate! Cleansing your mind can sometimes work in the form of letting go of clothes, shoes, jewelry, etc., that remind you of a certain time in your life that links to a negative vibration. Don’t chase what’s already happened. Love yourself enough to know the best is yet to come.
Babygirl, you should go and love yourself!