14 ways to show yourself "I love you".
We are all so busy taking care of everyone else that we often forget to take care of ourselves, and we neglect to do things to remind ourselves that we love us! We all need to do a better job of making ourselves a priority! In honor of Valentine’s Day, I want to give 14 simple ideas with which you can show yourself love and care, because you are worth it! Remember, you cannot pour from an empty bucket.
1. Eat something for the sheer pleasure of it.
Food was meant to be enjoyed! So think of that one dish, that one dessert that you’ve been missing ,and go get it. Eat it slowly, savoring each bite, feeling no guilt. This is a form of self-care.
2. Have a designated date night.
Stop making excuses and just do it. You’re not too busy, you’re not too broke, you’re not too single. If you have a significant other, establish a date night. If you don’t have a current partner, that’s great too! Pick a day you are going to socialize and call a different friend each week. Date night doesn’t have to be elaborate, it doesn’t have to cost a dime, and it doesn’t have to be at night!
3. Add music to make the mundane fun.
The next time you clean house or pay bills, crank up some music. Surprise your kids with a spontaneous “all out” 15 minute dance party! Music naturally makes us feel better and has the power to remind us of the joy in life
4. Call a friend that you haven’t talked to in a while.
We get busy, and our lives go in different directions, but remember the last time you talked to that high school or college friend? Or the last time you ran into that old neighbor at the grocery? It felt good to reconnect and you both left the interaction feeling positive and smiling.
The number one way to create a feeling of happiness and gratitude is by caring for someone else. Has there ever been a situation when, after giving your time and energy to a good cause, that you thought you actually got more out of it than the recipient? It happens every time. So don’t be so stingy with your time. What you get back in return is far more grand than the hour you sacrificed.
6. Open up a conversation with a trusted loved one by telling them how much you appreciate them and why.
What better way to make their day!? And I bet by the end of it, you’ll feel appreciated too. It’s a win-win for you both!
7. Ditch the energy suckers.
You know who I am talking about. That negative, needy, gossipy, critical, complaining, or disrespectful person in your circle. Quit choosing to make time for that drama out of a misguided sense of obligation or sympathy. What better way to love and care for yourself than to remove one negative force from your life?
8. Get better sleep.
Sleep is king! You need more of it. You probably need better quality of it too. So take a nap! Buy some new high quality sheets. Order a white noise maker so you can sleep to the sounds of the ocean. Sleep is vital to good health, so take better care of yourself in this way!
9. Say no.
You do not have to say “yes” to everybody and everything! Choose carefully what you say yes to, and make sure that is something you really want to do. It should be something that brings you joy in some way. Set these boundaries for yourself and people will respect that. You don’t need to be a people pleaser. Show yourself love by establishing these boundaries for yourself, because you respect your own time and energy.
10. Speak kindly to yourself.
Would you have a best friend that was constantly critical with every move you made and every bite you put in your mouth? Would you spend your time with someone who told you that you looked fat every single day? Well, you are WITH you 24/7, and if this is how you are talking to yourself, you need a serious break up. Nothing worthwhile ever comes from criticism, so stop criticizing yourself all day long. Guard your heart and mind with words of love and compassion for yourself. Be your own best friend.
11. Practice affirmations and gratitude.
No matter where you are in life, you have things to be thankful for. Sometimes we forget those things in the midst of problems. If you want to naturally focus on the positives, then start the day by saying affirming things to yourself and adopt an attitude of gratitude. Need some affirmations? I got you. Click HERE.
12. Stop and rest.
We cannot be “on” every waking hour of every day. Our brains need down time. Our bodies need down time. It’s okay to take a break from work. The work is not going anywhere, and it will get done, you know it will. You are not being lazy if you want to spend an hour vegging out in front of the TV or reading a trashy novel. So show yourself some love by being okay with doing nothing sometimes.
Breathing is something we do involuntarily but it’s also something we can do with purpose to slow down our heart rate and clear our minds. In some cases, it helps renew our focus to the task at hand. Other times, it can save us from saying or doing something we know we’ll regret. Here’s a simple technique: breathe in for 7 straight seconds, hold for the count of 8, and then release to the count of 7. Repeat 10 times and see how much better you feel physically and mentally.
14. Be present.
This is a big one. We’re too busy. We’re too scattered. We spend too much time worrying about the future and too much energy dwelling in the past. What if we could just be in the moment? We would listen more carefully to our kids. We would enjoy food more. We would regret nothing at the end of the day, at the end of our lives. Being present allows us to give more love, receive more love, learn more, teach more, and experience the ups and down of life fully engaged with our hearts and minds.
I stop at 14 because Valentine’s Day is on the 14th, but because you’ve made it this far, here’s a bonus for you. And maybe I saved the best for last.
15. Journal. You want to show yourself love and compassion and care for your emotional health, start journaling. It doesn’t have to have any specific guidelines, just write. Moving our thoughts through our bodies onto paper helps raise conscious awareness. So if something is bothering you but you can’t put your finger on it, just start writing. It will come out eventually. If you want to train your brain to focus on all that’s good in your life, start a gratitude journal. If you want to change the negative inner dialogue, start a positivity journal where you write down three things you like about you each day. 3 minutes of journaling a day can change your life for the better if you’ll commit to doing it.
There is only one you. You give so much of yourself to others that you leave little for yourself. And you matter. You matter to those that love you, and you need to matter to YOU above all else. When you show yourself care, compassion, and love, it radiates through to others. It sets a good example for your kids on how they should treat themselves. It increases your confidence and your capacity to love life. So take even a couple of these and run with them. Make self-love a priority and watch your life blossom.
Interested in working more with Amy Nighbert on how you can make yourself a priority in your life and show up for yourself every day, reach out.
Author: Amy Nighbert
Life Coaching with Amy Nighbert
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