How To Learn To Love Yourself Again
Can you learn how to love yourself again? How can you love yourself more? From time to time, finding ways to love yourself again may prove to be a little difficult.
If you are struggling with loving yourself, try these top 10 self love tips to learn how to love yourself again and how to love yourself more.
Why Is It So Hard To Learn How To Love Yourself Again?
For some, learning how to love yourself again can be one of the hardest concepts to learn and practice. It was definitely a struggle for me.
I’ve never been a ‘girly-girl’. I grew up pretty tomboy-ish and learned not to let my feelings show too much. After I had my first baby though, I became extremely sensitive. I cried for everything, I felt like things hurt me more deeply than before and it took me longer to snap out of sad moods. Even though I really didn’t like this new version of myself, I chalked it up to hormones and tried to live with it. I hoped that after a while I would go back to normal – or what I thought was normal.
Five years and two babies later, I couldn’t take it anymore. I was tired of feeling so sad. I started researching postpartum self-esteem issues and came across articles about self-love.
The articles were pretty eye-opening and I quickly realized I had a lot to learn. While I liked myself enough to enjoy my own company and laugh at my jokes, self-love was not something that I had ever practiced. I sought love from everyone in my life except for myself. In fact, I’ve learned that I’m way too hard on myself.
We tend to be our own worst critics. When we dislike something about ourselves we can fixate on it so much that we only see that element of ourselves. We tell ourselves that because of it we deserve less. We can be unnecessarily hard on ourselves in other ways as well. When we make a mistake, we might beat ourselves up over it and focus on it regardless of the feelings of others in our lives that it was just a mistake.
We may also fear that if we are confident we could come off as narcissistic or egotistical. I’ve realised this affects many women, especially those around my age who like me were never taught to be comfortable letting our voices be heard.
What Is Self-Love?
So, what exactly is self-love and what does it mean to have self-love?
According to Psychology Today, “It is a state of appreciation for oneself that grows from actions that support our physical, psychological and spiritual growth. Self-love is dynamic; it grows through actions that mature us. When we act in ways that expand self-love in us, we begin to accept much better our weaknesses as well as our strengths, have less need to explain away our short-comings, have compassion for ourselves as human beings struggling to find personal meaning, are more centered in our life purpose and values, and expect living fulfillment through our own efforts.”
Self-love means that you:
- Prioritize your needs.
- Value yourself.
- Know your worth and you don’t settle for less than you deserve.
- Love yourself unconditionally.
- Are gentle, kind and tough when necessary.
- Are compassionate with yourself.
Why Is Self-Love So Important?
So, what happens when you start loving yourself again?
The positive impacts that come with mindfully practicing self-love are endless. These are just a few self-love benefits that will add a lot of value to your life after you learn to love yourself more.
- Acceptance of yourself
- Healthy mind, body, and soul
- Ability to pinpoint stressors and rejuvenate when needed
- Knowing your worth
- Ability to set appropriate boundaries with others
- Ability to give more freely of yourself – with no strings, with no resentment, and with no expectations
- Positive mindset
- Less comparison of yourself with others
How To Love Yourself Again?
To love yourself again, you must prioritize yourself.
There are many resources online that provide guidance with developing self-love and helping you learn to love yourself. I’ve pulled out some of the things that continuously work really well for me.
10 ways to love yourself again:
- Journal to start to love yourself again
- Repeat positive affirmations to love yourself more
- Be compassionate and forgive yourself
- Invest and believe in yourself
- Spend quality time with yourself
- Recognize your accomplishments
- Challenge and improve yourself
- To love yourself again, trust yourself
- Practice self-care to love yourself again
- Set boundaries
1. Journal to start to love yourself again
I have to constantly be intentional with knowing who I am, what I need and what I want.
Research and writing have been invaluable to me. Sometimes it’s just too loud in my head.
When I think too much about everyone else’s interests and feelings, mine can get lost – and as a mom, I’m always thinking about everyone else’s feelings.
So I take a few mins every day to write. I write something that I love about myself… Everyday! I use these self love journal prompts to make my morning journaling easier.
Anything that I would want to know about a loved one in my life, I asked myself about me and I wrote it down.
2. Repeat positive affirmations to love yourself more
Doing this was actually hard for me initially – for so many years I looked in the mirror and didn’t like what I saw, not just physically but emotionally too. I’ve constantly tried to change myself for people in my life.
I wanted to be loved so badly that once someone pointed out a flaw about me, I tried to change it. So instead of thinking positively about myself, I looked in the mirror and saw flaws.
At first, I felt silly telling myself good things. But I really was determined to help myself and so I did it. This simple step proved to be extremely useful to help jump-start my self-love journey and helped me learn how to love myself again.
3. Be compassionate and forgive yourself
I’m usually the first to apologize. If I think I hurt someone or I could possibly be the one who caused pain, I am remorseful and I apologize – sometimes when it’s not even warranted.
When it comes to me though, nope! Not happening. I beat myself up so much. It’s tough love all the way and I leave no room for forgiveness. I didn’t even know that forgiving myself was important, when in fact it can be more important than being forgiven by someone else.
This was the hardest step for me and took the longest for me to work through.
I wrote down all the things I felt badly about and I worked on forgiving myself for each one. Some took longer than others, but I didn’t rush it. I created three columns:
- The things I needed to forgive
- The reason(s) it was difficult to forgive myself
- Something compassionate and kind. At first, I needed to take myself out of it and I thought about what I would have done and said if it were someone else. Now, it’s easier for me to think of being compassionate and kind with myself.
4. Invest and believe in yourself
I never used to put the same energy into myself that I would with others. I would invest time and money into any dream my husband or loved ones had but I wouldn’t do it for myself. Why was it so easy for me to believe in others and see their worth but never my own?
To start putting my needs and dreams ahead of last place, I started a vision board. Writing out my dreams and setting goals to reach them helped me to started investing and believing in my own abilities. All the support I typically gave to everyone else, I did for myself as well. I brainstormed, made plans and became my own cheerleader.
5. Spend quality time with yourself
As an introvert, this one came easier for me. I typically love to be alone – which I took to mean that I loved myself enough. But while it was alone time, it wasn’t quality time – I didn’t focus on myself and my needs.
I decided to find things that I enjoyed doing without being digitally connected. Sometimes I go old-school and pull out my pen and paper for some writing time. Other times I sit on my porch and enjoy the scenery and my thoughts. My all-time favorite though is putting on some awesome music and dancing without a care in the world.
6. Recognize your accomplishments
This is a fantastic way to build confidence and feel good about yourself. You should be proud of the things you’ve done! I made a nice infographic with many of my key achievements and saved it as the wallpaper on my phone and desktop so I’m constantly reminded of the awesome things I’ve done. These aren’t necessarily things that have changed the world, but they’ve made a difference to me and to my loved ones.
As I previously mentioned, it’s so easy to focus on negatives and this helped me to quiet that mental noise. Whenever I started being harsh with myself, I looked at my list and remembered how much I had worked to achieve each item.
7. Challenge and improve yourself
I kept myself in a very safe box. I was pretty aware of my abilities and I stuck with what was easy for me. But this didn’t allow me to spread my wings. When I thought about it I had accomplished quite a few things in my life – so why was I willing to just stop there? Even if I couldn’t do everything I thought about, the awesome thing about dreaming is that there are no limits to it.
So after much anxiety, I stepped out of my box. It was SO freeing. Following a new dream and trying something new or that I once didn’t believe I could do was fun. It boosted my confidence, fulfilled me, and empowered me to continue reaching.
8. To love yourself again, trust yourself
I’ve always had great instincts. What I lacked was the confidence to follow them.
All the work I had done on my self-love journey up to this point helped me to be able to take that chance on myself. I’m now able to trust myself and my instincts so much more and this has in turn made trying new things so much easier. It also helps me not freak out when my 3 little ones (and my husband) put their trust in me, because I know I deserve it.
9. Practice self-care to love yourself again
To love yourself again, practice self care every day.
This was another step that was a direct result of learning myself. After I got married and especially after I became a mom, I thought it was selfish to take time for myself because my family needed me. I didn’t understand that if I took care of myself I would be able to give them a much better version of me.
Now, I am more in tune with my needs and I understand the importance of taking the time to rejuvenate. I actually enjoy it and no longer see it as a hindrance or burden to anyone else. My family also understands that I’m putting myself in a position to be the best mom and wife (and person) that I can be. When you learn to love yourself in this way, you also make it easier to love everyone else around you.
Try this list of self care ideas if you need some inspirations to learn to love yourself again.
10. Set boundaries
Boundary setting with loved ones and acquaintances is such a critical aspect of life that so many of us overlook. We accept poor or sub-standard treatment from others to avoid conflict, and for many other reasons, but the damage this does to us over time is significant.
Many of us have or have had at least one toxic relationship that we, for whatever reason, allow to go on despite the hurt it causes us. This could be a “friend”, family member or co-worker. When we aren’t confident enough to stand up for ourselves, these relationships can drain us physically, mentally and emotionally and add to our already stressful lives.
This proves to be the most difficult for me to implement but since I’ve learned to love myself again and appreciate my worth, I know when I deserve to be treated better, and with that confidence, setting boundaries will eventually become an easier habit.
Learn How To Love Yourself Again – It’s Never Too Late
I’m a firm believer that everything happens at the right time. Having now fully committed to self-love, do I wish I had done it years ago? Sure! But given my life and circumstances, my journey may not have been as effective as it is now.
It’s important to remember that it’s never too late to improve yourself, which includes learning how to love yourself again and more. Self love is a continuous process and implementing it in your life will be one of the most beneficial things you do for yourself and your family.
I encourage you to invest in yourself. Start your self love journey and learn to love yourself today.
Check out these posts to help you on your journey:
- Self Love Affirmations
- 45 Self Love Journal Prompts
- 7 Day Self Love Challenge
- 50 Questions to find your best self
- 52 Journal Prompts For Women
- Daily Positive Affirmations To Boost Self Confidence
- 99 Self Reflection Questions
- 101 Self Care Ideas
I really hope this article has inspired you to jumpstart your self-love journey to learn how to love yourself again. No matter where you are on the path, I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.