A little more love… how can we develop more self love and compassion?
We know we should have love and compassion for ourselves, but how can we be intentional about developing more of it? With busy lives and big goals, taking time for ourselves can fall to the bottom of the never ending to do list. So here are some actionable easy to try tips which can help you develop more self love every day.
1. Practice self compassion
Self-compassion involves treating yourself with the same kindness, concern, and support that you would offer a friend - or in other words talk to yourself as if you were one of your fiends.
This is an important habit especially when it comes to our goals. We are often chasing new things, learning new skills and may face challenges and failures along the way.
Action - To practice self-compassion, try talking to yourself in a gentle and encouraging way, acknowledging that everyone makes mistakes and has flaws.
2. Challenge negative self-talk
Alongside talking to yourself with kindness, getting into the habit of interrupting negative thoughts is important too.
It’s easy for negative self talk to spiral, as soon as you give the inner critic a platform they don’t like to give it up!
Action - Whenever you feel like negative thoughts are spiralling, catch yourself and try to choose a better one. ‘I’m failing’ becomes ‘I’m trying my best’, or ‘I’m learning’. Take small steps to get to a better feeling thought.
3. Focus on your strengths
It's easy to focus on our weaknesses and shortcomings - our minds are great at looking for the negative! So make sure you take the time to acknowledge your natural strengths too.
Action - Journal about all the things you are good at, all the natural talents you have and how you are developing those skills even further.
4. Surround yourself with positive influences
Create an environment that helps you feel good, surrounding yourself with positive people who uplift and support you.
Be wary too of how social media might be triggering negative self talk. Unfollow or mute people on social media who make you feel bad about yourself or are triggering you.
Action - Create a physical and digital universe that makes you feel good about yourself.
5. Practice gratitude
We are great at focusing on what we don’t have… and can often feel like our value in society is linked to achieving external goals. But the truth is you are enough just as you are!
Gratitude can help with this. When we focus on what we're grateful for, we shift our perspective from what we lack to what we have. Even if we aren’t where we want to be right now, being grateful for what we do have and what we appreciate about ourselves helps us to feel more positive.
Action - Journal each day on what you are grateful for about yourself - think of three things you love about yourself each day.
6. Take care of your body
Taking care of your body is a form of self-love and appreciation.
It means nourishing your body with healthy foods, getting enough sleep, and staying active and taking some time for yourself at least once a day.
Action - Make some time each day for you. Even if it's just a few minutes to sit quietly - you deserve to take a break and have time for yourself.