I often find myself writing about self-love, simply because I know that that is the key to accomplishing absolutely anything we want in life. Self-love breeds confidence, and once we’re confident, the sky’s the limit! I think that we tend to overcomplicate things, or get “stuck in the muck” of what happened in the past.
Let’s really get down to the basics, if we love something we take care of it, right? For example, look at the way we love our children. We want them to achieve anything they desire. We nurture them, sign them up for all kinds of crazy sports teams, classes, mentorships … we want them to reach their goals, and if it’s within our power, we will help them. Why can’t we just do that for ourselves? Love ourselves so much, that we do whatever we need to do to be the person we want to be and live the life we want to live. Wow! Could all of our own answers really be found in a little self-love? I think so!
The problem with self-love is, although it sounds simple, a lot of women write me saying they just don’t know how to love themselves. Whether it be because of what’s happened to us throughout our lives, or that we just don’t like the reflection staring back at us in the mirror (no matter what self-help tricks we try), we as women, have a hard time with truly loving ourselves. I get it.
I know it’s not easy to always feel fantastic, especially when the media tells us we should be a size two, we should make homemade dinners every night, we should wrap our presents with pretty toppers, we should write daily to-do lists, we should be a super-woman! I know it’s easy to feel ‘less than’ when we compare ourselves to our past “remember when I was” self, our future “who I’d like to be” self, or the world around us “wish I could be” self, i.e. our neighbor “damn how can she wake up looking so fabulous?” next door. It’s hard to just be present and love the women we are meant to be in this moment. Okay, got it! Now, get over it! Read my last sentence, make it in the first person, and repeat it out loud, “I will be present and I love the woman I am meant to be in this moment.”
Here are three simple, practical, and totally fun tips to give yourself an Inside-Out Self-Love Makeover!
Realize why everyone around you thinks you’re pretty spectacular!
Make a list of your top ten qualities. They can be serious like you are a great listener, or silly, like you always call people back, you have neat penmanship, your cookies are always the first to sell out at the bake sale. Keep copies of it in your wallet, in your car, in your nightstand. Use it as a bookmark; make a magnet out of it! “Affirmations” have been around for years, for a reason- they work! Once you realize that you are pretty unique and special, it’s so much easier to start lovin‘ yourself!
Get passionate about something, anything!
When we are passionate about something, we don’t have time to worry about things that really don’t matter, and we just feel good about ourselves! We become more attractive to others, and more importantly, we become attractive to ourselves!! So, whether we set a goal and get passionate about achieving it, or we take up a hobby and make it a part of our lives, we need to fuel the fire inside of us!
A little lip gloss goes a long way!
All right, this is why makeover shows are so popular! In reality, if we take just a few minutes on the “outside” we feel better! If we take too many minutes (aka spend hours in the mirror) we can get caught up in that stuff and become overly-critical or dare I say “shallow”! So, stick to some basic grooming 101: tweeze the eyebrows, whiten the teeth, press your shirt, wear clothes that fit, accentuate your best features … heck you can even stop in a department store on a not-so-busy day and ask the make-up counter to give you a little crash course in make-up. Trust me—buy a lipstick and they’re glad to do it!
I know that self-love can feel “selfish” when we have so much to take care of in our lives. But, if we feel good, everything we do gets done better, our attitude and relationships improve! Think about it- won’t your co-workers love it when you are smiling on a Monday morning instead of hiding in the cubicle grunting? I think the kids will have a blast with a mom who laughs out loud, and exudes confidence when trying to raise confident children. The point is spend some well-deserved “you” time on a regular basis, and you’ll start to see that self-love is truly possible even when we’re busy, with lots going on, and lots of other people to love!
By Jennifer Tuma-Young