Are you struggling to find simple ways to practice self love and treat yourself with the same kindness you give to others? If so, it’s important to note that you are not alone. From my experience, both as a counselling student and from leading peer support groups within the mental health community, practising self love and being kind to oneself appear to be the greatest struggle. Although at first, this may feel like an overwhelming concept, practising self love in baby steps can benefit both your mental health and physical wellbeing, which can help you progress to achieve even greater things. When I began practising self love and being kinder to myself and my thoughts, I addressed myself in the third person so that I began treating myself with the same kindness which I treat others – Do you think this is something which you would be able to try? Here are 30 simple steps to promote self love and being kind to yourself…
♡ Start each day with a positive thought:
Keep a list of these thoughts so you can look back and reflect either when times are tough or when you want to acknowledge just how far you’ve come. The thought can be anything which makes you smile.
♡ Forgive yourself:
Remember something you did which made you feel embarrassed, ashamed or guilty? It’s time to let it go… You can’t change the past but you can control your future… Learn from your mistakes and move onwards.
♡ Find your happy place and happy people:
Think of the one place which always makes you feel calm and at ease and now think about the people which make you feel this way… Take time out to spend with these people or to visit these places and if you can’t often be there, or be with them, keep memories of each of your experiences to look back on.
♡ Learn to say ‘no’:
Saying no doesn’t always make you a bad person, sometimes it makes you a smart person
♡ Identify your strengths and weaknesses:
Want to practice self-development? Write a list of 5 of your strengths and 5 of your weaknesses. Use this opportunity to address how you can develop your strengths and improve your weaknesses. Be 100% honest.
♡ Write a seasonal bucket list of 10 thing you’ll enjoy:
Bucket lists are a great way of identifying what you want to achieve from life, however by keeping it seasonal you’ll achieve quicker results. Trying something new or visiting a new place is an easy way to boost your mood and creating a bucket list will help you keep yourself on track and it provides a fab incentive.
♡ Unfollow negative people on social media:
If you’re following accounts which are uninspiring, triggering or make you question your worth – stop! You don’t owe anybody an explanation and your feeds should be tailored to create the vibes and FOR YOU.
♡ Give 5 people a compliment today and make them count:
A compliment or small act of kindness can really brighten someones day and it’s 100% free!
♡ Practice gratitude:
Write a list of 10 things which you are grateful for. Practising gratitude is a simple and effective way to break-up anxious thought cycles and they remind of us the people and things which keep us going.
♡ Find a community:
One of the great things about social media is that there are communities for almost every hobby and interest despite how obscure they may be. Joining online communities is a great way to meet like-minded people and make friends. Just be careful of any private and personal information which you share with them.
♡ Check in with your thoughts and feelings:
Ask yourself how you’re honestly feeling. If you’re feeling positive, why? If you’re feeling negative, why? In order to move forwards and give ourselves the love and nourishment we need it’s important to address how we’re honestly feeling. Keep a mood journal for a week, either handwritten or using a free mobile app.
♡ Create a playlist of your favourite motivational songs:
This is a fun task and one you can update as and when you wish… Not sure where to start? Ask your friends for their favourite tracks, or add 1 or 2 daily and soon you’ll have a strong motivational playlist to enjoy.
♡ Plan yourself a weekend getaway:
Everybody needs something to look forward to so why not take the opportunity to plan a weekend away? It doesn’t have to be expensive or abroad, it could even be visiting your friends and family. This will give you something to look forward to and also something to focus on when you need a little motivational boost.
♡ Take a 30 minute walk in nature:
Walking has many benefits for our health and wellbeing, these include:
– connecting with nature
– receiving vitamin D
– allowing your mind space to wonder
– practicing self love
– exercising and moving your body
– giving yourself time away from screens and technology
♡ Empty and reorganise your handbag:
If you’re anything like me, your handbag will contain all sorts or random items which makes it really difficult to find the important items when you actually need them. Take 10 minutes to clear our all the random items and the rubbish and make a list of any items which you often need but rarely have to hand – this is the perfect opportunity to find/buy them and pop them in your bag… I try and declutter my handbag once a week.
♡ Reflect on your recent accomplishments:
It’s important to focus on recent accomplishments and it’s important to remember that it doesn’t have to be something huge, i.e climbing a mountain it can be as simple as getting out of bed in the morning, brushing your teeth or tackling your inboxes. Your accomplishments are personal to you and your journey.
♡ Download a free meditation app:
Meditation apps are all the rage at the moment, here are a couple which are free:
Stop, breathe & think
♡ Create a list of 10 positive affirmations for you to practice:
Positive affirmations are a great way to set your mood for the day and to remind you just how fabulous you are. Write a list of 10 and read them to yourself each morning… Feel free to share them in the comments.
♡ Set yourself goals:
Studies show that we are happier when we have goals to achieve, so set yourself some goals:
Set 1x goal for today
Set 2x goal for this week
Set 3x goal for the month
Set 4x goal for the year
This method allows you flexibility and you’ll have achieved something by the end of the day!
♡ Take a short course:
Fancy trying your hand at something new? Why not take the time to try a short course? There are a number of free courses available online or perhaps enrol in an evening class at your local college so you can acquire a new skill and make some new friends. There are endless short-term course available so enjoy!
♡ Write it down:
If your head is full of racing thoughts, or you’re trying to make sense of a situation, write down your thoughts and feelings. This will allow you to have a better understanding and make sense of things with a clearer head. Whether is nearly written, or scribbled thoughts just get your pen to paper!
♡ Spend time connecting with animals:
Animals are amazing, they don’t judge – they don’t ask questions, they just love unconditionally.
♡ Learn to ask better questions:
If the uncertainty of not knowing fills you with dread, don’t be afraid to ask questions: Ask the following: who? what? why? where? when? how? This should give you an understanding and ease any anxieties.
♡ Re-define your failures and successes:
Just because something didn’t go quite to plan or as well as expected doesn’t mean that you’re a failure. It’s important to look at any set-backs objectively to see where you went wrong so you can address it moving forwards. A fail doesn’t always have to be a negative experience, its about your perspective and mindset.
♡ Allow yourself to take time out:
With social media active 24/7, whether you use it for business or pleasure (or both) it can feel like its impossible to switch off… Even if you leave the office at 5pm, it’s too tempting not to check your emails over the weekend – for fear of an inbox explosion on Monday morning. Whatever your circumstances, allow yourself to take time out. Whether that means separating your accounts, or turning your phone off for an hour a day, allow yourself the time to refresh and focus on yourself. The chances are, no messages are so important that they can’t wait for response. It’s important to allow yourself at least one peaceful hour per day.
♡ De-clutter and resign your bedside table:
Chances are, your bedside table is one of the first things you see when you wake up, so give yourself something to smile about. Clear away all the rubbish, any cups you’ve collected and re-dress it with the things which make you smile. A few examples are: photographs, flowers and positive/motivational quotes.
♡ Assess and redefine your boundaries:
Boundaries are important and the boundaries we set, define how we allow others to treat us. It’s important to set boundaries within all relationships, wether they’re romantic, business or otherwise. Do you have a friend who only message you when it’s convenient for them? Or a client that messages you at unacceptable hours? Take time out to address how you feel about the way others treat you and if you need to redefine your boundaries, you don’t own anybody an explanation… It’s for you to decide how others can treat you.
♡ Accept yourself and embrace your differences:
One of the hardest things to do is accept your flaws and differences but once you have, it’s important that you learn to embrace them. Whether it’s an illness, a believe, a body-hang up… once you’ve learn to accept it you can own it and learn to love it. Then, nobody can use it against you – because you know it’s fab!
♡ End all toxic relationships:
This often sounds easier than it is, but it’s really important. A toxic relationship is one whereby another person is making you feel inadequate and unworthy. They may belittle you, or upset you – perhaps you have one friend who asks you for money but never returns the favour? Be careful where you spend your energy.
♡ Remind yourself why it’s important to be kind to your mind:
Being kind to ourselves is one of the most important things we can do… Treating ourselves with kindness allows us to heal and develop as individuals. Treating ourselves with kindness also allows us to move forwards without hanging onto self-doubt and other negative emotions. This also sets the standard for how we allow others to treat us, and instils a firm and mindful boundary. Download the image below as a reminder.
As you can see, there are lots of simple and effective ways to practice self love and treating yourself with kindness. If you’ve found this post beneficial, please share it with your followers so they can also get involved… Which of these ideas will you be trying? Do you think they’ll be beneficial? Please let me know your thoughts in the comments below:
Next in this series I’ll be talking about the importance of communicating your thoughts and feelings with others and tomorrow, I’ll be discussing the benefits of using crystal rollers within your skincare routine…
If you’re looking for more simple and effective selfcare suggestions check out my Simple selfcare bucketlist for more self care ideas and 26 ways to practice self-care to read the other posts in this series…