Practice Self-Love
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Practicing Self Love: 5 Ways!

Often when people express feelings or thoughts of being unattractive, unloved or unworthy, they are struggling with the inability to practice self-love. If we unpack those feelings, what will we discover? Most times we find that those feelings are manifestations of internalized feelings, thoughts and emotions that develop overtime. For example, not liking the shape or form of your body can lead to feeling unattractive. This can morph into a feeling unloved or not worthy of love.

What one thinks of themselves filters their perception in the many arenas of their life; thus, becoming an individual’s reality. This filter influences the way a person views themselves in professional settings, social settings, and interpersonal—intimate settings.  The goal here is to offer hope and guidance to those who feel challenged in parts of their life. Perhaps after reading you will find one or more of these practices that works well and motivates you.  These can guide you into a new sense of self and the enlightened ability to practice self-love.

Here are five ways to practice self-love:

1.   Practice Self-Awareness

Consider staying present with yourself. This requires being cognizant of your thoughts, feelings, and emotions. Explore the thoughts and narratives you tell yourself for accuracy. Are the narratives you tell yourself correct? Or are they inflated reflections of negativity you have become accustomed to, thus becoming your reality? To change a negative schema, replace it with an honest and positive schema. A negative part of oneself does not equate to the whole individual. Allow the positive reflections to shine brighter than the negative reflections.

2.  Practice Self-Care

Allow yourself time to enjoy a hot bath or some other routine, this is a great way to reduce stress after a long day. Many people say they don’t have the time to enjoy a hot bath as they are so busy quick showers becomes their alternative. When we practice self-love, we allow ourselves the time to do the things that will make us feel good and appreciate life. Allowing the time to bathe and moisturize can leave you feeling fresh and clean. If you find that shaving daily or applying makeup builds your self-confidence, reinforce that positive feeling by repeating the behavior.

3.  Indulge Healthy Nutrition

Treat your body with love and care. Do not pump yourself full of unhealthy foods, drinks and illicit substances. Consuming the nutrition you need can be a energizing. Preparing a healthy meal and enjoying a glass of red wine is a great way to show self-appreciation and self-love. For example, people often put the best oil and gas in their cars expecting that the car will drive well, get the best mileage, and need minimal repairs. Many of those same people will fuel their body with foods that contain too much sugar, starch and sodium, hence causing health problems. Practice self-love by treating your body like a new car and the only car you will ever own.

4.  Maintain A Healthy Environment

Our energy is a reflection of our surroundings; therefore, it is important to keep our personal space clean and comfortable. Our personal space is where we rebuild and recharge ourselves. It is important to keep that space free of clutter, dust and dirt. Occupying a space that is not tidy can affect your mood; practice self-love by ensuring that your personal space stimulates comfort and tranquility. Some people find comfort in soft lighting, white-noise machines or aromatherapy. All of these can offer a soothing experience.

5.  Practice Self-Validation

Seeking validation from others can be mentally and physically exhausting. Instead, validate yourself: it requires much less energy and effort! Self-validation keeps us grounded and mindful of the work and effort we put into the goals we set and the commitment we show as we complete the objectives to our goals. While we all can fall short of our goals, it is important to practice self-love by forgiving ourselves and remembering past accomplishments, as a positive form of validation. This can act as a motivator to keep pushing towards that next goal. Be sure to set goals that are realistic and obtainable. Set the bar high but not so high that you won’t be able to achieve your goal; plan within reason.

These are just a few suggestions on how to practice self-love. Remember, it is extremely important to learn how to love yourself and make yourself a priority. Not only does practicing self-love help you, but it also sets an example of how others perceive you.

What are some of the ways you practice self-love?

James L. Colter - NYC Therapist

James L. Colter - NYC Therapist

Psychotherapist at myTherapyNYC
Offers individual and couples counseling in NYC. Specializes in LGBTQ, depression, anxiety, HIV/AIDS, and loss & grief.
James L. Colter - NYC Therapist

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6 replies
  1. Joe
    Joe says:

    Great Blog! It’s very important to know that learning how to care and love yourself can change your perceptions towards yourself and the world around you.

  2. Zach
    Zach says:

    Great blog, James! Self care is such an important topic to remember, particularly when we are facing stressful situations. Thanks for breaking this down for us.

  3. Omar
    Omar says:

    Great blog! I especially like that you incorporated good nutrition into the practice of self love. Diet has a huge impact on how we feel, sleep, and function. Awesome work!


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