Valentines day and self love

The day that celebrates love and affection came and went yesterday. Many of us enjoyed expressing our love to others with greetings and gifts. And that makes us feel good! However, if we consider the idea that “self-love” might also give us the same feelings of greatness, does it become easier to achieve?

Written to help you fall in love with self-care and enjoy the beauty within.

“The beauty you see in me is a reflection of you” Rumi. 

I’ve been doing a lot of research and work around the “science of kindness” recently and have relished the positive emotions that are induced by acts of being kind. Funnily enough, it seems that kindness and love share much in common… we can easily feel we are showing our love to someone in being kind to them! I find it even more interesting that this concept we call “love” is often assumed to have a deep and meaningful, somewhat exclusive-to-the-relationship connotation. However, our “love” can be experienced and evoked through a multitude of efforts and behaviours which we might call “kindness” but also:

“care”, “appreciation”, “attention”, “generosity”, “loyalty”, “trust”, “devotion”, “selflessness”, “compassion”, “support” and of course “passion”.

Isn’t it that interesting our expressions of “love” (with respect to all the above) towards others can be so great… but when it comes to ourselves, self-criticism feels so much easier than self-praise, self-sabotage feels so much easier than self-discipline and expecting less of others feels easier than expecting less of ourselves.

Although these thoughts and behaviours might seem easier, they don’t feel good and they do nothing to encourage us towards good mental health. That same unhelpful language might even be speaking to you now and saying “you’re too good at self-criticism, self-sabotage and putting others before you… switching to a completely different way of being isn’t even possible!”

So before you give up or even think that self-care, a form of self-love, is going to take endless energy, here are a few quick ways to get you started on the inner work…

3 Things:

Some of you may know that I am a fan of doing things in 3’s, reinforcing positivity to help our brain feel more comfortable with it. So how about creating a moment of self-care each day by noting 3 Things you have done well? They can be as simple or imaginative as you like. Perhaps you woke up this morning feeling tired, but still managed to get up and ready and have a productive day at work, or perhaps you felt you felt like  having a day on your own but still showed up to that Zoom call and contributed! It’s lovely to look back on these 3 Things at the end of the week to feel a sense of achievement 😊

Watch your language!

The way we speak to ourselves can very quickly cause us to feel disempowered and not good enough. Sentences starting with “I have to..”, “I need to…”, “I should” are unhelpful and take away the feeling that we have a choice in what we’re doing. Feeling in control of our decisions can really boost our mental health. Monitor how much you use these phrases that often elicit a feeling of stress or helplessness and notice how empowering it feels to say “I want to…”, “I can…”, “I choose to”… they may feel a little alien to start with but as with anything you, they can feel more natural with practice 😊

Stay connected

As human beings, we are social animals. This means we need to be in contact with others to feel as though we are surviving! During a time in which we are forced to be physically distant from those we cherish, we may notice ourselves withdrawing a little, losing motivation to socially connect with others and possibly even losing our social skills! Zoom fatigue may be looming but that doesn’t mean you can’t drop someone a message to say “I was thinking about you.. how are things?” or even get creative with your video calls by planning a fun quiz, movie night, book club or even a whatever-you-fancy competition with family, friends and colleagues… be it baking, drawing or anything in between!

Written to help you fall in love with self-care and enjoy the beauty within.

“The beauty you see in me is a reflection of you” Rumi. 

Look after you,

Z

#wellness #love #mentalhealth #wellatwork #wellbeing #selfcare #selflove


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