It’s the beginning of a new year and everyone is talking about resolutions and making grandiose goals for the next year. There’s already so much pressure to become happier, more in shape, more perfect. It’s exhausting.
Why can’t we be okay with where we are now? And does this goal of achieving perfection exist? We wait for that moment to become “happy” but we forget that we can choose to be happy in each moment of our lives. This is the happiness.
There is an underlying goal to have other people love us, accept us and to make us think that we are lovable. But, if we don’t know how to accept ourselves — the good and the bad, the past and the mistakes — how can we expect someone else to love us?
I struggled with self-love issues for a while. I would self-sabotage friendships, relationships, anything that would block people from getting too close because I didn’t even know how to love myself. Or better yet, to trust that I could be loved. I had little self-worth, so every decision I made had this underlying lack of self-love.
When I started to make decisions based on my truest intentions, I started to feel this energy of loving myself. Because I was listening to my heart. Trusting that — and what came from those decisions — resulted in even more positivity in my life. The things that I had always been craving. I had to stop these self-sabotaging ways of living to fully experience loving myself.
The journey is where the purpose of everything exists. So, on my quest of falling in love with myself, I started with this simple concept: right now, I know that I’m doing my absolute best to be the best version of myself.
Not only will self-acceptance positively affect your own self-concept, it creates a living example of the type of love you expect to receive from others. To make self-love your priority this year, try focusing on these 3 things:
1. Take time to meditate.
I know it’s nothing you’ve never heard of before but I really can’t stress this enough. Taking time to sit with myself and focus on my breathing has changed my life. Start with the basics, sit in a comfortable position and set a 5 minute timer, play some soft celestial music (or skip music all together) and focus on your breath. If your mind wanders, this is okay, this is the practice. The awareness that you are thinking is good, just come back to focusing on the breath. If you want a guided meditation, try RAMA-TV or Headspace. You can also try a local meditation spot such as MNDFL or The Path in NYC. Meditation really helps with clearing your mind so you know easily what you want/don’t want in life and you can feel more in control with your emotions, thoughts, creativity, all of it!
2. Make friends with like-minded people.
As humans, we need a community. We need our people that support and love us no matter what. The more in tune you are with yourself the more authentic your relationships are going to be with those around you. So, in order to find your tribe ask yourself a few questions. First, what do you love to do? Yoga, ceramics, running, cycling, watching movies? Whatever it is just go and do that as much as you can. Why? Because this is where you are going to find people who at least have similar interests to you. This is how you can start building your tribe. Your support system. This is vital for loving ourselves.
3. Invest in yourself.
Focus attention on yourself and what you love to do. I recently had a 5 year relationship end. I didn’t know the difference between him and I or the relationship and who I was. It was scary. I didn’t know what I liked to eat, drink, do, without that person. So, I started spending a lot of time with myself learning what I liked to do and I realized that I started investing time and energy into myself. The more time and energy I spent with myself, the more in tune I would be with the things that made me happy. It’s a great cycle. I ended up buying plants for my apartment, going to yoga several times a week and eating a pescatarian diet.