What is self-love? And how to start loving yourself?
“Self love is about learning to understand who the ‘true you’ is — and what you desire and dream of, knowing your dreams and what you’d love your life to look like, and getting clear what thoughts and beliefs are stopping you from achieving that.”
“You have to love yourself more.” “Why don’t you love yourself?” “You can’t love another person until you love yourself first.”
How many times have you heard this and wondered: what are they talking about??
What is self-love? How do I love myself more??
We have asked our friend Uma from Soul Glamour, who is a self-love coach, all these questions you would love to get answers to!
What is self-love?
Self-love is tapping into the ‘true you’. I like to say that there are two versions of you: there’s you at the heart, which is the ‘true you’, and then there’s the you in your mind, which has fears and beliefs that you’re not worthy or deserving, or beliefs like “that’s not possible for me”. This part of you people-pleases and tries to live up to people’s expectations and judgements.
Self love is about learning to understand who the ‘true you’ is — and what you desire and dream of, knowing your dreams and what you’d love your life to look like, and getting clear what thoughts and beliefs are stopping you from achieving that. It’s also working on your mindset, and your fears and beliefs about yourself and your life, and making sure that they’re in alignment with your dreams — so that you can make them come true.
A lot of people are confused between the terms “self-love” and “self-care”, so what do they mean?
Self-care is the physical things you do for self-love. It could be meditating, doing yoga, taking time off, eating healthy, whereas self-love is the deeper internal work. So it’s not always “massages and going to the spa”, and things like that.
Some people think self love sounds a bit selfish or a bit narcissistic. So is self-love selfish?
There’s a saying that states “in order to be selfless, you have to be selfish”. The more that you fill your “cup” and look after yourself, the more you have to give to others. Actually, when you don’t look after yourself and you come from an unloving space for yourself, how can you be the best for someone else? So if anything, self-love is actually the most selfless thing you can do for others. You inspire other people to honour themselves and live their best lives when you step into that place for yourself.
But why it’s hard for a lot of people to fully accept themselves? Is it because of external conditions and social norms?
Yes, we all have these parts of ourselves which always like to criticise ourselves and ‘beat ourselves up’. I think being able to look at all parts of you, even parts that you don’t like, is a really hard thing to do. Everyone has had those negative experiences and negative judgements from other people, which have hurt us and taught us to reject certain parts of ourselves. So, a part of self-love is being able to face even the parts that we don’t like about ourselves.
How can journaling help us cultivate self-love?
Journaling is a really powerful tool to help you connect with yourself. You’re writing down your thoughts and you can make sense of what’s going on inside of you, and get clear on what it is that you need and want.
What is your favourite journaling exercise to do to cultivate self-love?
I think journalling about your dreams and your goals is a really powerful way to connect to you, because it reminds you what you want to create in this life and what you’re striving for, so that you don’t allow fear to get in the way.
Do you journal yourself?
Yes, I do. I try to journal every day, just because I notice a difference in how I feel when I don’t journal regularly. It definitely changes how positive or negative I feel.
How long have you been journaling?
For two and a half years.
How did it change your life?
It just got me to connect with myself and figure out what was going on, because I was always overthinking things and had so many thoughts and negative voices going through my mind at a time. I knew I wanted to change my life, but I just didn’t know how, so it let me make sense of all my thoughts and make me get clear on what I wanted and needed, and help me be motivated.
When you work with your clients do you also recommend journalling to them?
Yes, so I try to get them to have their own morning practice of journalling about their dreams and goals, and also journalling affirmations to help them be really motivated and help them get in the mindset of what they need to believe and be thinking in order to believe that their dreams can come true. I think that’s really important.
How does it work? How many times do you need to write down this affirmation?
Usually for whatever I’m working on in my life or on my self, I might have 10–15 affirmations and I just journal each one once each day.
Friends, hope this post has showed you that self-love is not “woo woo”, and it’s not pampering and taking a day at the spa either!
If you want to take a first step to loving yourself more, but don’t know where to start, we have put together a FREE PDF with the journaling exercises and affirmations that will help you to cultivate Self-love!