I wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for learning these self love practices…. and that’s a FACT.
It’s true, self love practices are the key to being happy with your body. Why? Because self love practices battle the negative self talk we ALL face inside of our own heads 🙂
SELF LOVE PRACTICES CRUSH NEGATIVE SELF TALK
Negative self talk is a bully. It’s the mean voice inside your head that keeps you from crushing your goals and going after your biggest dreams. But you have to love your body to be happy and IGNORE that mean old bully. If you’re hiding from your own reflection, it’s not going to make you feel as strong and powerful as you should!
So, let me ask you… who do you spend 100% of your time with? That’s right, YOURSELF.
You can make new friends, switch jobs, or move away from home, but you can never avoid spending time with yourself. It’s weird to think about, but it’s exactly why loving who you are is so important! And I know, crushing negative self talk is the most difficult part of learning self love practices. And it’s especially difficult if you’ve suffered from body image issues or eating disorders.
SELF CRITICISM DOESN’T MAKE YOU HAPPY
I know that every time I look in the mirror, I have to remind myself that criticizing my body is not the answer to being happy. I spent years focusing on weight loss and changing my body, and a huge part of that was constantly tearing apart my image in the mirror. Lose weight here, tone this, make this bigger, push harder.
My voice constantly told me I wasn’t good enough.
I forgot how to look at in the mirror and NOT criticize myself. But it’s not just about how you look, we all have our own personal struggles that manifest much deeper than just in our body image. Which is why negative self talk also makes it hard to…
- Go after your dream job
- Try out a new sport or hobby
- Ask someone out on a date
- Start your own business or community
- Ask for a raise or promotion
- Be a leader in your community
- Stick up for yourself in conflict
- Stand up for what you believe in
- Push yourself out of your comfort zone
Ending the negative self talk and criticism is essential to self love. In fact, it’s essential to living a life that makes you happy.
SELF LOVE PRACTICES ARE ESSENTIAL TO HAPPINESS
The problem with negative self talk is that it can be extremely difficult to make peace with the things you want to change. It’s not enough that change is difficult on its own. We like to make it even more difficult by telling ourselves all the reasons why we “can’t do it” or why it “won’t work”.
But, if you want to be your happiest and healthiest self, you need to stop listening to the negative voice that tells you that you’re not good enough and holds you back from doing what you really want.
You can defeat the negative self talk and self criticism… and the best way I’ve ever found is to crush them with powerful self love practices.
SELF CRITICISM IS A BLINDFOLD ON THE BEAUTY YOU ALREADY HAVE
Honestly, most of the time that inner voice inside your head isn’t really you. Negative self-talk is like a blindfold. It holds you back from seeing the world the way it really is, like how you have….
- A beautiful and uplifting smile
- The kindest heart that ever existed
- Deep blue eyes that sparkle with happiness
- The most amazing sense of humor
- Legs a mile long that rock a pair of high-waisted skinny jeans
- A sense of style that puts runways to shame
- The cutest butt that fits your body perfectly
- The ability to smooth talk your way to getting anything you want 😉
You see, when you’re so focused on the pieces of yourself you aren’t happy with, you forget the rest of you exists!
You lose connection with the world around you. Remove your blindfold with powerful self love practices, make peace with the things you want to change, and accept that healing your insecurities will take time.
PERFECTION IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN PROGRESS
You know what they say…. perfection is the enemy of progress (And whoever said that is right!!) The most challenging part of any goal is having realistic expectations.
STICK TO YOUR GOALS
I don’t know where I heard it, but I love the idea that “we overestimate how much we can do in a day and underestimate how much we can do in a year”.
So many people give up because they can’t stick 100% to their goal, so they stop completely! The on/off switch of having to do something perfectly or not at all makes you feel like you fail every time something doesn’t go according to your plan. So what if, instead of striving for perfection (which frankly doesn’t exist), we work towards a goal and celebrate every small step we take in the right direction? Yeah, that’d be freakin’ empowering.
EMBRACE THE POSITIVE
The other difficult part of reaching a goal is that we tend to focus on bad experiences much more than positive ones. I mean, you probably find yourself reading reviews when shopping online right? We like to know if what we’re doing is worth it, which is why we….
- Check Amazon reviews to make sure the product you’re going to buy doesn’t suck
- Search Yelp reviews to make sure you’re not going to have a bad meal
- Read movie reviews to make sure you’re watching something worth seeing
We THRIVE off of sharing negative experiences. We don’t really care how much something went well, we care about what did NOT meet our expectations.
Remember that movie you saw? If you didn’t 100% love it, it doesn’t matter how many good scenes there were…. you share what you wish was better about it! This type of thinking applies to the way we think about ourselves too.
STOP BELIEVING IN “FAILURE”
Finding the positive parts of our struggles is extraordinarily challenging because we are hard-wired to obsess over the “failures”. Therefore, it takes a lot more work to positively change the perception of something than it does to negatively change it. That’s why practicing self love is so important!
We have to learn not to be so hard on ourselves when we do things that don’t work. We have to learn to celebrate our successes and learn from the mistakes without beating ourselves up for trying! We need to know that failure is just a piece of success before we give up on everything we worked for.
When we practice self love and learn to have compassion for ourselves, we can break through the “failure” mindset! We can learn that we are absolute, undeniably capable of success. And in that belief system, we can crush the negative self talk and reach the goals that actually make us happy.
3 SELF LOVES PRACTICES YOU CAN DO DAILY
Self love practices are a practice, which why you have to do it daily! If you don’t practice, it won’t stick around long enough to make the difference I know it can. I’ve seen it change the lives of my friends, family, and health coaching clients.
Trust me, the more self love practices I follow, the more clear-headed I am to reach my goals and actually change my life! Without self love, I would never have been able to start this website and follow my dreams of sharing my experiences with the world 🙂
1. JOURNAL YOUR INSECURITIES
One of my absolute favorite self love practices is self-reflection. I know that if I don’t get my thoughts out on paper or take the time to clear my mind, I get overwhelmed by all the things I didn’t do, should do, or want to do. That’s why journaling is such a big part of my life.
Instead of getting bombarded by what’s going on in my head, I get it all out on paper.
Whenever I’m feeling like I’m not good enough or things aren’t going my way, I turn to journaling to get to the root of my problem instead using the negative self talk to beat myself down. Here are 3 steps to start journaling:
- Set aside a time each day to journal. The morning or evening tend to work best. You want to do it when your head is clearest, so either before the day has really started or when you’re winding down for bed tends to work best. Sometimes I even do it both times depending on how stressed I am.
- Buy a pretty notebook and keep a few extra pens around. You can use the notes app on your phone, but I recommend writing by hand because it can be extra therapeutic. It’s also a lot less distracting because you’re not tempted to check social media or answer your texts.
- Record your free-flowing thoughts. Do your best to keep yourself from filtering out what you’re writing. You want to release whatever is coming to mind, whether it’s to-do lists, goals, shopping lists, dreams, creative writing, things you’re personally struggling with, lists of worries, moments of gratitude, and so on. Nothing is off limits.
- Use your journal to create positive change. Take a good look at the things that come up in your journal and decide what changes you can make to be happier. Are you constantly looking for better relationships in your life? Are you looking for new ways to get active? Are you focusing on new stress-relief techniques? Do you want a new job? Your journal can be a powerful insight into truly discovering what changes you need to make to be happy.
2. SET INSPIRATIONAL REMINDERS FOR YOURSELF
Be mindful about what triggers you to think negative thoughts. If it’s standing in front of the mirror – post a sticky note on the mirror with a note that says you’re beautiful. Having a way to create awareness around negative self talk is crucial to stopping it. You can’t fix it if you don’t know it’s going on!
Here’s an example of what I hung on my bedroom mirror. When I see my reflection and start to criticize myself, I see this card and snap out of my mindset. I realize that I have the power to change my attitude, my day, and my life when I use one of these simple self love practices.
To make a card like this, simply write your positive affirmation on a piece of paper and cover it with clear tape – it’s just like laminating it! You can also get creative and paint your own on a canvas, print it out and frame it, or write it on a simple piece of paper. Any way you do it, a reminder can be a powerful tool to break the negative self talk and inspire you to take action on what makes you happy.
Some inspirational reminders:
- Frame the saying, “you can only control what’s in your control” and place it on your desk. That way you’re reminded to let go of frustrations caused by things you cannot change.
- Tape “I’m happy because I love my body” onto your mirror, that way you affirm that you’re allowed to be comfortable in your own skin, no matter what you’re thinking in your head that day.
- Hang “my universe is as beautiful as I create it to be” on a wall where you’ll see it often, that way you can set a positive tone for the day and inspire yourself to do what makes you happy.
If you can’t think of anything meaningful on your own, you can always find quotes on Pinterest here.
One warning: I would avoid putting notes on your fridge, especially if you’re fighting any type of emotional eating or eating disorder. Unless it’s a reminder that you are allowed to love your food (or something inspirational with no diet-related meaning) – I would argue against it. Reminders for weight loss or diet changes can easily cause more negative self talk if not used appropriately.
3. CREATE A POSITIVE ENVIRONMENT FOR SELF DISCOVERY
It takes serious effort to make real changes in how we feel. But knowing that there really are specific things we can do to change makes all the difference! We can be comfortable in our own skin, we can get past our insecurities, and we can find what makes us truly happy. Here’s how to use self love practices to do it:
- Determine something you love to do… and schedule more of it! Simply doing the things that make you happy, shifts your mindset to positive thinking. If you aren’t happy in your life, the best first step is to surround yourself with specific things that make you feel better. Whether it’s taking more yoga class, hiking with your dog, or getting your nails done with your friends, make sure you prioritize the time to enjoy yourself and be happy!
- Surround yourself with people who accept you for who you are… and who you want to be! You’re a product of the people around you, so create a healthy support group of people that will help you reach your goals. Plan to spend time with those people, and distance yourself from those who aren’t in support of your goals if necessary. If you’re struggling to get support, you can always sign up to work with me here.
- Support your physical needs with extra care. Sleep well, eat well, and move well – when you feel good, you love yourself more, it’s that simple! That means prioritizing a good night’s sleep, finding out how to eat intuitively, learning to move your body in a way that’s challenging, but enjoyable!
TAKEAWAY: SELF LOVE PRACTICES CREATE A POSITIVE BODY IMAGE
The ultimate goal is to make self love practices that you can maintain. Small steps, like the ones I mentioned in this blog post, are things you can do without a lot of work… but at the same time, they make a HUGE difference in the long run.
It’s time to create a life that allows you to be happy with your body! I know you can do this! xo Bree