No, Self-Love Isn’t Just Yoga and Kale Juice. Here’s What Self-Love Really Looks Like…

Don’t get me wrong, the health benefits of child’s pose and green smoothies are undeniable. Hell, they could even play a role in loving yourself and your body—two essential components of self-care. But, sadly, the key to true self-love is greater than a magical juice or hour-long yoga session.

Let’s face it: the market is oversaturated with self-care tips and tricks. But most of the time, they don’t work. That’s because a face mask and a hot bath don’t get to the root of why you’re not making empowered choices (trust me, I wish they could).

By all means, don’t let me stop you from doing what you love! Engaging in calming activities is an excellent catalyst to getting in touch with what your body really needs. However, to achieve lasting self-love, we need to dive a little deeper.

Before we jump in, I want to make something very clear:

Self-love is not selfish or egotistical. Real self-love is caring for yourself so you can better show up for the ones you love.

Finding time for self-love and self-care is always worth it, especially once you understand what it actually looks like. Ultimately, self-love is about getting to know the real you, then honoring the real you. Here’s how to make that happen:

1. Honor Your Needs Without Judgment

Let me tell you a story. Once upon a time, I would make sure I had plans for big events like the Super Bowl. WHY? Simply put, I didn’t want to feel left out when everybody else was getting together. I mean, seriously, is there anyone in the world who doesn’t like watching the Super Bowl? Oh yeah, me! I don’t like football, crowds OR small talk. Yet, I found myself doing all three of these things at once. Because that makes sense, right? Nope! In order to practice self-love, you need to honor your needs, not the needs of others, nor what you think your needs should be. The key to understanding your needs is giving yourself time to react. If someone asks you to do something, don’t be afraid to take some time to think about your answer. More importantly, trust that you know what you need more than anyone else (because you do).

But that’s just the beginning. Once you start honoring your needs, you must have compassion for yourself. It’s easy to beat yourself up when you tell someone “no.” But you have nothing to feel bad about. Instead, you should pat yourself on the back for having the courage to do what you want for once.

2. Practice Gratitude Daily

It has been scientifically proven that starting and ending your day with joy and happiness leads to a healthier life. When you are happy, you make better decisions for yourself. Makes sense, right? But how the heck do you go about creating a happier life? Gratitude. Try this: every morning, instead of scrolling through social media, take out a journal and write down three things you’re grateful for. Then, right before you go to bed, write down three positive things that happened to you that day. Cultivating gratitude doesn’t cost money and takes five minutes out of your day. Five minutes! Not to mention, the health benefits are endless. Read seven of them here!

3. Forgive, Let Go and Take Back Your Power

Resentment is extremely toxic to your own self-love. And while you may have a million good reasons to direct anger towards another person, you cannot move forward with your life if you’re weighed down with resentment. It’s time to forgive yourself and others for any past wrongdoings. That doesn’t mean you have to like them. It just means you’ve washed your hands of it and are ready to move on. Also, it’s time to drop the victim mentality—it doesn’t work for anybody. Taking ownership of your life versus blaming it on everyone else lets you create the life you crave. It gives you permission to make change right now. When you let other people hold that power, nothing will get done.

Loving yourself is a magical feeling, but it takes a lot of hard work and patience. It won’t happen overnight. That’s why it’s incredibly important to show yourself compassion as you work at self-care every day.

Having trouble learning how to practice self-love? That’s where I come in! Your relationship with yourself is the most important relationship in your life. Until you know who you are (at the core) and start taking personal responsibility yourself (your feelings, beliefs, triggers, behaviors, etc.), you will never really be able to have deep, soulful connections with anyone else.

Some of the topics we might discuss in our sessions are:

– Being yourself 100% of the time
– Expressing your truth, even if it’s not popular
– Learning how to cope with feelings of jealousy, fear, and other Big Scary Feelings (BSFs)
– Setting healthy boundaries for yourself
– Prioritizing self-care and self-compassion
– Embracing change without fear
– Trusting your internal navigation system (aka your gut)

Contact me today to schedule a no-pressure phone call to see if we’re a good fit for each other!

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Lisa Panos

Lisa Panos is a Certified Life Coach and Author who helps people stop struggling and start thriving in their personal and professional relationships. Trained by Dr. Martha Beck (aka, Oprah’s Life Coach), Lisa helps her clients create new, healthy relationships, mend those that are broken, or say goodbye to ones that no longer serve them. She combines highly effective coaching tactics with an explosive arsenal of personal experience that swiftly moves people out of dysfunction and into a place of deep inner strength.

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