According to Health's October 2020 cover star Mary J. Blige, self-love is finding satisfaction in who you are. "That’s learning how to love and hug yourself and say, 'You know what? I love you, Mary. I love you, Beautiful. I love you, Gorgeous. I love you, Smart Woman. I love you, Talented Woman,'" Blige explained in an interview.
So how you can practice more self-love every day? Pinterest users shared some fun, simple ways to bring more self-love into their lives, from creating routines to writing it out. Try one of these seven self-care practices and see what sticks.
1. Create a self-love routine
Coming up with a personalized routine that taps into your senses will help lift your spirits on days when you're feeling down on yourself. It could be as simple as brewing your favorite cup of coffee and taking the time to enjoy every sip, or running a luxurious bath with candles and a soothing bath bomb. Practicing the routine will also get you acclimated to carving our time for yourself on good and bad days—an important step that honors you.
2. Repeat self-love affirmations
Affirmations are a form of positive reinforcement spoken with confidence, and if you say them enough, your brain—and then you—will start believing them. A few we like: "I believe in myself and my abilities" and "I accept myself unconditionally." Saying these affirmations over and over to yourself in tough situations can help you make stronger decisions that put your needs front and center.
3. Read the self-love quotes of others
If you're having a hard time believing your own self-love words, look to what other people say to affirm their own worth and value. Chances are you aren't alone in your self-love struggle, and reading quotes from others on how they built their self-confidence can feel super-inspiring and help you push through on bad days. Do a self-love quote search on Pinterest or Instagram to find one that works for you.
4. Work on self-love journal prompts
"Journal therapy is all about using personal material as a way of documenting an experience, and learning more about yourself in the process," Kathleen Adams, LPC, a Colorado-based psychotherapist and author of Journal to the Self, previously told Health. "It lets us say what's on our minds and helps us get and stay healthy through listening to our inner desires and needs."
Use journaling as a channel to self-love by writing about exactly what you want and seek to manifest in your life. Using a series of prompts can be especially helpful, especially if you struggle to write on your own.
5. Consider a self-love tattoo
Getting inked can be a healing experience, especially for those who have experienced a sexual assault, according to a small 2018 study in the journal Tailor and Francis Online. Tattoos often bear an emotional or philosophical significance, so getting one centered on self-love can put you on a path toward self-love and healing. Here are some examples of empowering self-love tattoos we adore.
6. Try a self-love challenge
A self-love challenge is a great way to commit to practicing more self-love every day, even if just for a few weeks. You'll be asked to embrace a new activity or move daily; the goal is to get into the habit of appreciating yourself and your self-worth. Journaling about how each activity makes you feel will boost your self-love level even higher.
7. Print out or purchase self-love art
If you're not ready to commit to a tattoo, consider bringing artwork into your home or workspace. Art that speaks to you will inspire you as well, and each time you see the painting or sculpture or drawing, it will remind you to practice self-love…even when it's not always easy. Try searching Etsy for personal handmade self-love art prints to spread love throughout your space.
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