We love doing things for others. We prepare things for our family vacations, our mornings are crazy busy making sure everyone’s ready for work and school, and by night time we’ve stretched ourselves thin to get some decent-looking dinner on the table.
But what about the part where you take care of YOU? What time of the day do you get to give yourself the love you rightfully deserve?
Your first thought might be this: “My family is my priority!” or “Work comes first!”
Well, if you have been feeling down, stressed, depressed, or just plain ‘drained’ lately – this may as well be the reason – you just knocked off what should be right on top of your list: YOURSELF.
Here are six reasons why you should put yourself first:
1. Self-love helps you discover how strong and capable you are.
It’s almost instinctive to reach out to loved ones who are feeling down – you exert every effort to help them feel good about themselves. But when you’re the one who hits that wall, you find yourself at a loss on how to move forward. You feel like there’s something wrong with just about everything you do. You feel inadequate.
Exercising some self-love will help you see beyond those ‘mistakes’. It allows you to get situations in perspective, appreciate your personal strengths and in turn, enable you to use those to move forward and achieve your goals.
For example: You hit a weight loss plateau, and the numbers have not been dropping for months. Without self-love, you wallow in the thought of not being able to get to the weight you want. You tend to indulge in your comfort food again, and get further off track.
With the right amount of self-love you realize that this is a normal part of any weight loss journey. You also recognize (and applaud) what you have achieved so far, and you know you can go further. You then enthusiastically take on ways to gradually inch out of that plateau.
Self-love teaches you that you CAN – and in turn, you make things happen.
2. Self-love lets you enjoy life more – even when you’re on your own.
You may remember many points in your life when you felt alone – and it may have either made you feel lost, depressed, or empty. Maybe it was a heartbreak, an unachieved goal, or literally just being on your own for a long stretch of time.
As much as we want to have dependable companions in whatever we do and wherever we go, there is much in life’s journey that we have to tread on our own.
Self-love may not give you the companionship you think you need, but it will definitely allow you to see why there are great reasons out there for you to enjoy life on your own. You’ll find joy in simple pleasures like watching a movie, taking long walks, traveling to new destinations, and so much more. Instead of feeling left out, you feel the freedom to explore the great big world, the way you want to.
In the long run, self-love allows you to gain confidence in what you can accomplish without having to depend on anyone.
3. Self-love makes you feel good and look good.
There are days when you feel you’re at our worst. Your clothes don’t fit the way you like, skin’s breaking out uncontrollably, and you just feel you’re not at 100% at all.
It’s normal – this happens.
Without self-love though, you tend to take these moments to a whole new level – to a downward spiral. You turn to comfort food and binge eat, you skip workouts, and the domino effect continues. You think that since there’s not much to love about yourself right now, that you’re not worth exerting that extra effort on.
This is a sad cycle you should not allow to continue. Treating yourself to some self-love lets you see those moments as opportunities, and enables you to see the many other things that are going just right with your body, and your life.
You will feel lighter, and your inner happiness and appreciation gives you an undeniable ‘glow’ that shows on your skin, your smile, your eyes, and even in the energy you put in every step as you walk.
4. Self-love helps you set boundaries.
Self-love teaches you to say no when you find it appropriate. It enables you to give, and allows you to ‘hit the brakes’ too when the need calls for it. You are able to provide assistance without holding off on any that you yourself need.
For example, if you used to spend every minute of your morning getting everyone ready (except yourself), self-love teaches you to allot time to make sure your own needs are met too. Yes, this means you also get to eat (a healthy) breakfast, take a shower, maybe even read a few pages off your favorite book.
Self-love translates to knowing what your ‘cheat day’ limits are, it means being able to stop yourself from over-exerting during workouts too. Self-love helps you find that most important balance.
5. Self-love makes you do your best – for YOU.
You sometimes get caught up in the daily routines of living that you tend to make compromises, or just settle for ‘what’s there’. While this kind of thinking may also have its positive points, it can hinder you from achieving your fullest potential.
Self-love motivates you to keep on improving. You’ll be inspired to take on endeavors that improve your abilities and widen your horizon. You also eat healthily, and you make time to exercise, because you understand just what your body needs to be at its best.
You seek out the best possible options, and you strive to be able to make those choices available to you.
YOU are your body’s BEST caretaker.
We have trusted doctors, health coaches, life coaches, friends, and family members. They can help us achieve our inner peace and enable us to get that healthy body.
BUT, more than anyone else, YOU know best how to get yourself in tip-top condition.
You know your physical limits, you know what stresses you out most, you know what calms you down, you know what exercise and diet your body agrees with – others can just take an educated guess or go by experience.
And really, no matter how other people influence you to make healthier choices – the decision is still yours to make.
6. Self-love teaches you to listen to your body first and foremost.
When you love yourself enough, you ‘hear out’ its needs and you are attentive to those in ways that work best for you.
Keep in mind that more than anything else, it is your initiative and actions that would bring you closer to optimal health.
If you’ve ever reached a point when you doubted the need for self-love, look back at these six reasons. Remember that in order for you to truly be able to love others, you must be able to fully love yourself first.
Do you want to share your reasons why you think self-love is important?
Tell us what you think in the comments section below.