This post on practicing self-love is sponsored by BabbleBoxx.com. Thank you for supporting the brands that help keep The Gem up and running! All opinions are my own.
It only takes a mear few thumb scrolls on Instagram before you run into someone’s words encouraging you to work on “self-love”. While the trendiness, repetition, and overuse of this two-word phrase may make us want to roll our eyes and keep venturing down our feed, I have to admit, it truly is a critical notion for us to practice.
Self-love is important because it’s how you prove to yourself that you matter. It feels SO good to feel like you matter to someone, right? But as wonderful as that feeling is, we can’t be 100% sure we can always count on even the best of friends and the most supportive of significant others in order to feel that feeling. Wouldn’t it be far more powerful if we knew how to cultivate it on our own? That’s exactly what I’m here to talk about today, seven tips for practicing self-love.
Those 7 Easy Ways to Practice Self-Love are:
1.) Do something hard (like really hard)
2.) Invest in something a little extra
3.) Change up your look
4.) Be more mindful of your time
5.) Get in touch with your heart
6.) Learn how to budget
7.) Reflect how you love others back on yourself (THIS is the most important one, so be sure to make it to the bottom of the post – you won’t regret it!)
Scroll down to learn about each tip for practicing self-love in more depth!
Do something hard
While I don’t think self-love and self-care are exactly the same thing, I do think self-care with an intentional enough mindset can lead to self-love. In an excellent article by Brianna Weist on how self-care isn’t just about salt baths and chocolate cake, she talks about how self-care is often doing, “the ugliest thing that you have to do”. You know what I’m talking about. Stuff like letting go of a toxic friendship, walking away from someone you love because your visions of the future don’t align, getting up extra early to sweat through a spin class, or having to sell something valuable to you so that you don’t get behind on your rent. As hard as these situations are at the moment, you’re actually showing yourself that you love yourself enough to see the bigger picture, that you love yourself enough to take on the challenges that will soon help you get to an even better version enough, and that you love yourself enough to believe in your ability to get there.
Invest in something a little extra
Hear me out. I do not think self-love needs to be about spending money on a spa day, the vacation of a lifetime, the most lavish face mask on the market, or an entire cheesecake. I mean you can invest in all of those things as “self-care” (which there is absolutely nothing wrong with!) but if you still don’t have the right mindset behind them, they don’t do anything to help you emotionally love yourself more. When you consciously make an effort to upgrade something, you show yourself that you’re worth it, that you deserve to indulge in the finer things in life every now and then. For example, I must admit, at first when I found out the price of this Cross Century II Pearlescent White Lacquer Rollerball Pen, it seemed like a bit much for a writing utensil. But now that I’ve been using it, it makes me feel GOOD and a bit fancy – now I get it. As someone who is avidly brainstorming in notebooks, writing and re-writing to-do lists, and keeping up with her planner each and every day, it has been really nice to have an upgraded pen to paper experience. Its weighted elegance makes me feel more official to be using something so luxurious and it gives a special sense of purpose to everything I write. With the grace of a pearl necklace and its rose-gold accents, this luxury pen feels like jewelry for my desk, which I enjoy! Save 10% off your purchase with code Babble10 (ends 2/28/19 at 11:59 PM EST).
Change up your look
Never in a million years would I have selected pink glasses for myself. But, since Zenni Optical sent over this pair of sparkly pink glasses in a cat eye shape (they are under $30!), I cannot take them off. This is a pair with just their Blokz blue blocker lenses – perfect for protecting your eyes from the harmful light from our devices that cause tired, irritated, blurry vision. However, I am about to invest in a pair that has my prescription because I need them that much! They make me feel like an even better, really cool, fresh, smart version of myself and I am here for it! Zenni Optical also sent over these incredible red heart-shaped sunglasses (they’re the option with 80% gray sunglass tint at checkout) that I simply adore. Every time I wear them, I see people glance at them and smile. It boosts my own confidence knowing something I’m wearing can bring a touch of joy to someone else. Shop Zenni Valentine’s Day eyewear here! Whether it’s a pair of glasses that are so “you”, a new go-to shade of red lipstick, or a fierce hair cut, being brave enough to try a new look for yourself is both a reminder of your capability get outside of your comfort zone and is an instant confidence booster.
Be more mindful of your time
Whether it’s helping us move, inviting us over for dinner, or taking the time to reach out to set up a coffee date, we feel loved when someone wants to spend time with and for us. In order to prove to yourself that you matter, you need to do the same for yourself. It’s no secret part of that is carving out time for you to recharge and recover, but the part most people miss is keeping the time spent on other things within their boundaries. Sure, I might have time blocked out 2 or 3 hours for myself in the evening, but if I’m working on a blog post right before that, it’s easy to let work spill over into my intended “me” time. Or if I don’t tell myself that my time in Target is limited to 20 minutes, I’ll easily spend 2 hours finding unnecessary things to buy. It’s amazing how long we take to do things when we don’t set a limit, isn’t it?! Since I easily get sucked into the trap of looking at every social media app when I glance my phone, I find wearing a watch to be a much more effective way to stay in touch with time. This beautiful metallic rose gold watch from Casio (it’s the G-SHOCK S Series) just made its way into my life and I love the “military chic”, understated design (it’s also shock and water resistant)! When it comes to watches for women, this sportswear inspired timepiece helps me keep track of time – in style! I BEGGED my dad for a bright blue Casio Baby-G watch when I was a tween (which he caved and bought), so this feels nostalgic and reminds me of how I excited I was in that moment.
Get in touch with your heart
Love comes from the heart and the best way to get back in touch with your heart is to explore what it desires. Spend time slowing down and practice visualizing what you want your future to look like. Don’t worry about how realistic the thoughts that come up are or where or not you can make them happen. This isn’t about taking action or strategizing, it’s about simply walking through your daydreams, so leave logic at the door. Let your heart know that it has a voice and that you’re listening to it.
Learn how to budget
How you feel about yourself impacts how you spend your money. I don’t know about you, but when I’m having a rough week, I’m far more likely to spend money on the convenient comfort of pizza or to grab a donut in hopes my day will start on a sweeter note. And when I’m scrounging up every last bit of my energy and using it in attempted to stay focused on my to-do list, the self-control not to buy 3 pants of yoga pants (because they’re on sale!), just isn’t as likely to be there. Sitting down, coming up with a monthly budget, and allotting a set amount of funds that can be spent entirely on yourself will not only make you feel like your hard work is rewarding you, but it will help relieve the guilt of stress spending… because if there’s one thing that’s the most detrimental to self-love, its for sure guilt.
Reflect how you love others back on yourself
Think of how you love the people in your life. Do things like some extra belly fat, clusters of blemishes on their face, their social anxiety, or how their trimmed beard hairs seem to land like never-disappearing confetti all around the bathroom make you love them any less? No. Sure, you might not *love* these things and some of them may very well make you frustrated, but your love for that person is still there nonetheless. Not to mention, you certainly don’t spend all day every day verbally critiquing the people you love for their imperfections the way you do to yourself when addressing your flaws in your own head. Right? Never in a million years would you say some of the things you say to yourself to someone else. Gem, it’s time to starting looking at how you love other people and reflecting that same approach to love back onto YOU.