Self-love is an action of providing yourself with unconditional love, nurture and support.
It does not mean we are selfish humans (not all of the time), but we need to love ourselves fully and entirely before we can be loved by another human being.
Self-love is difficult. The thought of practicing how to love yourself instead of focusing on another person seems unfathomable. But, it is not.
I am going to reveal something very personal: I have been practicing how to truly love myself for the past five months.
It's nothing short of hard work, and in the process of getting in touch with your inner self, you are often met with compassion, gentleness, care and kindness.
Maybe those are things no one has ever provided for you.
I can understand if you feel as if giving yourself what you very much need may seem impossible. However, with hard work and practice, you will gain everything you have been hungry for.
I am going to list eight tips I have found key in developing a new relationship with myself for the past five months.
1. Embrace that body of yours.
Own it and be proud of it. You are one in 7 billion people who have this exact body.
Own your birthmarks and all your "flaws" -- you would not be you without them.
2. Take yourself out for dinner.
You would look good for someone else on a date -- why not do it for yourself next Friday night?
You will always be your best company. Curl your hair. Put on that red dress of yours that still has a price tag on it. Impress your beautiful self.
3. Grab a blanket and lay outside.
Summer is here and the sun needs your company.
If you have an hour between class or an extra 30 minutes to spare before you cook dinner, let the sun hit your face. Remind yourself how much you deserve this moment.
4. Give yourself compliments.
Whether you compliment the sun-kissed color of your hair, or the way your legs look in your new heels, compliment yourself.
Compliments always feel good, even if they are coming from your very own self.
5. Remove all that is toxic from your life.
You have to be mindful of who you keep as your company.
Do not surround yourself with people who do not encourage you or support your decisions, or people who do not have faith in you.
Surround yourself with people who not only tell you how amazing you truly are, but also willingly show you each and every day.
6. Eat clean.
Feed your body with healthy foods and nutrients. Strive for eight hours a night of sleep.
Show your body how important it is to you. Treat it well because our bodies do not ask us for anything in return.
7. Validate your feelings.
Sit with them. Lean into them.
Our feelings are our road maps; pay close enough attention to what they are trying to tell you. Be in tune with yourself.
8. Be YOU.