Why Loving Yourself Isn’t Selfish, It’s Necessary

Self Love = Self Care and it’s Necessary to Survive and Thrive

“You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection” – Buddha

Earlier today I had a conversation with a close friend in which she mentioned feeling bad that she fell off the “diet wagon.” She acknowledged that she knew she shouldn’t beat herself up — yet she was doing it anyway.

And guess what? So was I. For the exact same reason as her.

I’d made poor diet choices lately and really struggled with my self-image again when I thought I’d finally moved past it ages ago.

But hearing it from her made me realize — it’s not selfish to love yourself enough to take care of yourself.

Especially because there are people in your life who need you and depend on you.

Even if you didn’t have anyone else, it was just you in this world, still aren’t YOU enough to make sure you’re still around — happy and healthy?

Not fat, sick and medicated?
Not depressed and negative?
Not bullying yourself over every seemingly wrong choice?

So our conversation went something like this (paraphrasing):

Me: “Would you be upset or disappointed in your best friend and ‘beat her up’ if she told you she was making some bad choices?”

And her response was, “Of course not! I’d be supportive and offer encouragement.”

Hmmmm…

The point was taken.

So what about you? When you have those moments where you feel you’ve messed up, failed, fallen off the wagon, made a bad choice — do you repeatedly beat yourself to death mentally?

Or do you talk to yourself as if you were talking to your best friend, your spouse, or your child — lovingly encouraging and compassionate?

Ultimately, no matter who you are with or who is around you, YOU are the only person you spend 24/7/365 with.

So if you can be anything, at least BE KIND to yourself and LOVE yourself through each choice you make — good or bad.

In fact, Jesus talks about it in what is known as “The Greatest Commandment:”

Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’[a] 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b] There is no commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:30-31 New International Version (NIV)

Not sure how to start showing yourself some love?

Here are a few ways I practice regular self-care.

  • Gentle Yoga (specifically ones that focus on de-stressing myself)
  • Meditation (especially mindful meditation)
  • Grounding (Is there nothing better than sinking your feet into dirt and connecting with nature??)
  • Journaling (Allowing the flow of thoughts out onto paper is so relaxing!)
  • Long hot showers (Visualizing the water is washing away all of my stress actually relieves stress!)
  • Reading a book (An actual book – not electronic! Nothing beats turning off EVERYTHING and getting lost in another world or learning something new! There’s actually some science behind reading a printed vs e-book!)
  • Coloring (Yep, it’s not just for kids! Meditative coloring books might be all the “rage” right now but they are worth it!!)
  • Sitting in silence (The ULTIMATE self-care in a house full of loud 5-year-old twin boys and their noise!)

Honestly, I could keep going but you get the gist. 😉

Try a few of these or you can check out this article for more great self-care ideas!

Xoxo,

Dawn-Renee

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