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If I loved myself as I loved others, what would I do? Who would I be?
Puzzled by this question, I accepted a challenge to do things to love me. I’m not speaking of a selfish self-love here, but a respecting and honoring self-love. Totally different.
It is a challenge because I find it easy to love others selflessly, yet, ignoring my own needs. This is not loving to myself, nor to God for the life he has given me.
However, giving too much attention can be dangerous and selfish, so this isn’t something I am going to make an idol out of, but to simply learn to love myself as I love others.
Do the challenge with me.
Think of ways you could love yourself in respecting and honoring ways and make a list. What are the things you ignore that really need more attention? Your health? How about your marriage? Manage your stress better?
What are ways you can love yourself?
- Cutting out soda, sugar, and artificial sugar.
- Eating more wholesome and nutritious food.
- Spending more time with positive people.
- Getting massages once a month.
- Learn how to manage stress through meditation, breathing techniques, and/or prayer.
- Sleeping more.
- Drinking more water.
- Read every day.
- Spending less time on your computer.
- Setting an alarm for every hour you are at your desk to get in the habit of taking deep breaths, stretching, and bringing shoulders down to help prevent postural problems
- Journaling everyday for expression, self-discovery, or writing prayers.
- Write a list of character traits you want to be, and tape it to your mirror, walls, and in your wallet.
- Meet with life coach, marriage coach, counselor, or mentor on a regular basis.
- Learn how to budget to get yourself out of debt and stop stressing over finances. Meet with financial advisor or take Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University.
- Go on daily walks.
- Nurture your body, mind, and spirit.
- Find the exercise you enjoy most, and take small steps to being consistent (walking, running, group fitness, a new sport, weight training, etc)
- Ask someone that has overcome an issue you are dealing with to be your accountability partner. (Depression, weight loss, porn addiction, training for that 5K you’ve always wanted to do, spending habits, quit smoking…).
- Learn how to set boundaries to not let people walk over you.
- Work less, prioritize budget to have a life again and be with people you love.
This is just a list to get you started. One of them may have spoken loud to you as, “Yes, I need to love myself that way a little better…” Or perhaps none of these applied to you and something else came to mind.
Make your list and find ways to love, respect, and honor yourself just as you do others.
Love. Not obsess. Remember this is a challenge to love yourself in a respecting and honoring way. Narcism is an ugly thing, whatever you do, don’t go THAT way.
Maybe you are on the opposite end of the spectrum where you ‘love’ yourself a little too much. That’s dangerous, nor is it love. If this is you, maybe the challenge of learning to love yourself actually means discovering ways to love others instead. In that case, make a point each day to love others.
Now that this is fresh in your mind, take some time to make a list. It doesn’t have to be that long. Maybe thinking of one is hard enough, so just start there and put it into practice.
Go ahead. Right now, write down ways you can love yourself in a respectful and honoring way. Take from the list above or add the ones that came to mind.
Happy Birthday to Meeeeeeeeeeeee
Today is my birthday. A few weeks ago I got this tug feeling in my heart to accept this challenge. I do absolutely love, love, LOVE loving and honoring others, but I also need to learn to love myself more, which feels a little foreign.
Like I said, love, not obsess.
Last year, a friend decided to do 29 acts of kindness for others on the day of her 29th birthday. This year she realized she needed to do acts of self-love instead. It will be interesting to hear how she wrapped up her birthday and what she learned from it! (Waiting, Janessa!)
So here is my list to learn to love myself. Not only am I posting it here, but I am printing this and taping it to my wall to remind myself. I have already put this on the back burner long enough. Feel free to hold me accountable!
If I really loved myself, what would I do?
- Be as kind to myself as I am to others.
- Do more of the things that bring me life.
- Listen to the advice that I give others better.
- Nurture my body, mind, and spirit.
- Forgive myself as I forgive others, and as God forgives me.
- Living with boundaries. Learning to say no to take control over my life.
- Stick to the path God has for me instead of swaying and getting distracted.
- Write, meditate, and pray daily. God’s presence is the sweetest place!
- Receive counsel, coaching, and/or mentoring on a regular basis.
- Read more instead of just holding onto books to ‘someday’ read them.
- To honor my own dreams and goals as much as I do others.
- Grow in the the areas I desire to grow in (as a writer and entrepreneur)
- Stop taking responsibility for others.
- Stop allowing others opinions of me hurt, offend, or distract me.
- Experience more culture and arts (music, museum, art)
- Physical self-care. Regular massages, chiropractic, movement, always improving nutrition
- Do the things that bring me joy.
Yes, it’s kind of a long list and slightly overwhelming. That’s why I’m not going to do them all at once, but slowly apply one at a time to make loving myself as sacred as loving you.
Speaking of loving you, leave a few of your ways you want to learn to love yourself in the comments. And don’t be afraid to ask for an accountability partner to do it!
Hi! I'm Bailey! I am a national athlete in two sports, passionate about natural living, and even more passionate about getting and giving the MOST out of this short life. I massage, coach, compete, and share all my secrets here. Enjoy!