One of the hardest people to love is yourself. But you are also the most important person to love. You deserve to love yourself. Here are 35 ways to help you fall in love, and stay in love, with yourself:
1. Plan something that makes you happy every day
You should have a reason to get out of bed every morning. Maybe you’re excited because you get to wear your favorite outfit, because you are going to stop by your favorite smoothie place after work or because you’re going to talk to a friend on the phone. Plan a reason for each day to be special.
2. Ask for what you want
It’s often uncomfortable, but you don’t have to simply accept what’s given to you. Learn to ask.
3. Try to serve as many people as you can, daily
Believe it or not, focusing outward is one of the best ways you can love yourself.
4. Hang out with yourself
Don’t give yourself a hard time if you’d rather stay at home with Chinese takeout and “The Bachelor.” It’s OK to go to movies by yourself or get a table for one. Spending time with yourself can help you realize how great you are.
5. Confront your fear
When you realize you really can speak in public or stand at the top of a tall building, you will be reminded of how awesome you really are.
6. Write a journal
The best way to find out who you are is to write in a journal. It’s an excellent way to mark progress you had no idea you’d made.
7. Accept credit for your accomplishments
Don’t brush people off when they commend you for a job well done. Own up to what you’ve accomplished.
8. Make a list of your favorite attributes
You’ll be surprised how awesome you are when you see it on paper.
9. Always be developing a new skill or hobby
Learning new things can put you outside your comfort zone, but accomplishing them feels better than anything. Also, but learning new skills makes you an even more awesome human with lots of activities to engage in.
10. Meditate at least weekly
It’s important to get in touch with yourself and be re-centered regularly.
11. Use social media sparingly
Social media is a poor substitute for social interaction, and has a way of making you feel dissatisfied with your life.
12. Stop waiting to be happy
Make the choice to be happy now instead of waiting until you have a new job, new relationship or until you lose a few pounds.
13. Discover a type of exercise you love
Physical activity helps you love yourself in a myriad of ways, but many people view it as a punishment. Find a type of exercise that makes you excited to move; whether it’s swimming, basketball or yoga, there’s an exercise out there for you.
14. Make a good night’s sleep happen
Grow up and make the changes you need to get a full and quality night of sleep. It will make a world of difference.
15. Say “no”
It can be hard to say no to other people, and even to ourselves. Learn that little word and how to use it.
16. Forgive yourself
You make mistakes — so does everyone. Please, don’t beat yourself up. Learn from them, move on and be better.
17. Find a look that feels great on you
The easiest way to stop obsessing over your appearance is to find a look that makes you feel confident. Feeling great will help you look great.
18. Build healthy relationships with family members
Relationships can be strained easily; but it can shockingly have a great impact on your own self-respect if you make a sincere effort to strengthen family relationships.
19. Stick to a healthy diet
Your body feels so much better when you eat lots of fruits and vegetables, drink lots of water and avoid too much sugar and processed foods. When your body feels good, so does your mental state.
20. … But indulge sometimes
Even though you should make an effort to eat healthy, you need to feel free to enjoy indulgences every so often as well.
21. Read (a lot)
Reading develops your character and helps you to find and accept yourself.
22. Travel when you want
You might need to save up money or go on trips by yourself, but find a solution to let yourself get outside of your town when you want to.
23. Abolish all comparisons
Anytime you start comparing yourself to another person, remove that thought from your head. We all have weaknesses and strengths, and more likely than not, you are comparing your weaknesses to their strengths.
24. Print pictures
Don’t let memories stay on your phone to die. Print them so you can see people you love doing things you love.
25. Stay organized
Keeping your room, office or computer clean will make you feel so much better.
26. Listen to inspiring speeches often
Whether you look up some TED talks or sermons by spiritual leaders, make it a priority to regularly listen to things that inspire you to be a better person.
27. Embrace criticism
Criticism isn’t necessarily a negative thing. Welcome it as an opportunity to be your best self.
28. Treat yo’self
You shouldn’t give yourself a license to go crazy, but always refraining from anything you love isn’t healthy. Treating yourself to a fancy dinner now and then or letting yourself buy that lipstick you want tells yourself you are a person who deserves it.
29. Stop trying to please everyone
You can’t do it; and the attempt is exhausting. If you’re happy with yourself, that’s what counts.
30. Tell yourself that you’re amazing
Every day, look yourself in the eye (using a mirror) and tell yourself how amazing you are. You’ll start to believe it.
31. Laugh every day
Make laughing a priority.
32. Surround yourself with wonderful people
If certain people make you love yourself less, they don’t belong in your life. Make time for people who make you your best.
33. Connect to a source of spirituality
Find whatever higher power you can connect with and engage daily in that source of spirituality.
34. Ask for help when you need it
Don’t make excuses for not asking for help. Learn to lean on others.
35. Spend time outside
The outdoors have some kind of healing properties that make you feel amazing. Whether you go on walks or just sit and enjoy the outdoors, experience life outside your home.