“I WISH I COULD RUN ACROSS A BEACH INTO MY OWN ARMS”
– SAID THAT DICKHEAD, KANYE
If you haven’t already guessed by my mention of the Lord of self-love – Kanye West, I’m here to talk about self love and why you should get on that bandwagon – quick smart.
So you’re telling me to Love Myself, are you? Hmmm
If you were to google “Love yourself’ you’ll be probably disappointed to find that, the vast majority of your search results bring up youtube links to Justin Bieber’s song “Love Yourself” – you know the one that everyone thinks is about that hot-mess-brat, Selena Gomez?
Not very helpful, I know.
So here’s my (non Bieber related) spin on Self-love
First , let me take you back to when I was at the tender age of TWENTY TWO…
Now I’m thinking of that song, No one likes you when you’re 22 (or is 23?) and I’ve lost my train of thought.
Ah yes. I remember I was stuck in the most unfulfilling, boring job as a Receptionist, my man-friend was off overseas holidaying with his mates (while I was at home like… I love working) and my family was going through, looking back, the worst time of our lives. Everyone was stressed out of their minds, and I had no idea who I was or what I was really doing with my life, except: Hi, I’m Rebecca, a 22 year old Receptionist, and I’m good at breathing – and eating – and being Nathan’s girlfriend.
You can imagine the ‘ordinariness’ that was my life back then and why, ultimately, I decided I’d had enough of ordinariness and that simply wasn’t good enough anymore. Here are 9 things I did to make me love myself:
- First of all I took a good hard look at myself and finally thought: – Rebecca you tremendous piece of work, you – I’ve decided I’m going to love the shit out of you. Because all this lack-of worth, insecurity and mediocracy has been somewhat SHITTY and I’m ready to not feel so shitty anymore.
- I made a conscious effort to watch my thoughts, learn about my mind and every time I had an unsupportive or unloving thought – I’d catch it out, patiently argue why it wasn’t true and flip it around on itself. With practice I got better at this and am now able to “Poo-poo” the negative mind chatter more easily and quickly.
- I found some things I was passionate about and interested in. I did that by trying a lot of kooky New Agey things (and some just kooky) – that were proven to better your life – or so lots of others kept saying. Like, meditation, yoga, mindfulness, DRY BODY BRUSHING (the jury is still out on the effectiveness of that last one).
- I tried to minimise my obsession with my physical appearance, that doesn’t mean I stopped taking pride in my appearance – that’s different (still have to look presentable at corporate job and all), I just stopped giving it such weight to who I was. I’ve realised some of the most beautiful women in the world are still focused on THAT THING they hate about themselves or want to change – but to the outside world, they look like perfection. It’s a never ending game your mind plays with you, and I dont want to have a bar of it.
- I’ve always been health conscious, eaten good food and exercised and this is another key to self-love and self-worth. We have a rule at our house where me and my man-friend try to eat ‘clean’ and healthy Monday to Friday. He definitely has more willpower than me when it comes to this (because, Nutella) but I try… and my intention is still there. We save the weekends to eat and drink what we like. One of the biggest acts of self-respect, I think, is actually not filling your body with rubbish – drugs and fast food (on the regular). I’m not perfect – I do eat KFC occasionally and of course drink at friends birthday etc, but in general, I’ve found that by limiting junk food, I feel that I’m valuing myself.
- Re-shuffle your priorities and make sure that you’re number 1 and: Partner, Family, Dog, all come after you. Sounds a little selfish but you kind of have to be – no one else is going to be selfish for you. OR you could continue with making other people a priority before you and see how that continues to NOT work for you.
- Keep check on jealousy and inadequacy and insecurity. The three evil sisters. They’re all terrible feelings to feel and at my lowest point I remember feeling overwhelmed by all three. Don’t devalue yourself by comparing yourself to others – it just leads to insecurity. Lets all agree that everyone is different… so why even bother? I know it’s a tough one. Maybe try a little affirmation here when you need it.
- Don’t get lost in your relationships with others – remember to always keep yourself at number 1 – but appreciate that relationships can teach us so much about ourselves and help us transform. My man-friend traveling a lot (with friends) allowed me room to grow into myself. He’s also patient, kind-hearted and soft natured and we are both similar in that way and complement each other. He motivates me to keep my emotions in check and try to be even-tempered. My brother is forever teaching me to be patient and to remember to let go, surrender to what is, and be forgiving.
- Ta DAAA you’ve reached the end and maybe the most important thing – GRATITUDE and being grateful. Always have a grateful heart, because what you focus on you attract and I’m sure you want more of the GOOD STUFF.
Here’s a list of 30 little things that bring me momentary happiness – and probably you too.
Consider this your Monday morning reminder to focus on the little things today (and not your Mondayitis).
Make a note of the little things that make you go: “Fck YEAH” and focus on them when you notice one happening next. Savour it and appreciate that momentary happiness that comes with it… After all, your day is essentially made up of a series of these LITTLE THINGS – and you can easily control how many of them you cram into your day – or don’t.