It's Valentine's Day, and with that, we tend to focus on lavishing attention and gifts on our significant others, friends and family. For those who are single either by choice or circumstance, it can be a non-day. Regardless of what you think of this day, the flower shops are booming and the candy stores are bustling. Some hearts are bursting or breaking too.
But what about YOU? What about every other day of the year? Where are you finding that kind of soul nourishment that we all need?
Well, that's an easy one - it comes from YOU.
Self-love and self-care are the one-two punch that we need daily to keep ourselves sustained on a groovy vibe, to stay centered, to acknowledge and connect with our core. Practicing self-love and self-care are as important as the air we breathe. It's more meaningful than any love and praise we may find from others.
Think about it - people come and go. People pass away. People aren't always there. But you are with you always. You are intertwined with every part of your being. Loving and caring for yourself is the only constant. And in showing ourselves that love and care (and learning to accept it) also sets us up for stronger and more meaningful relationships with others. It's also critical when we are moving through transitions of some kind.
How can we practice self-love and self-care? There are countless ways to honour yourself, but here are some ways to start:
1) Write out a gratitude list every morning - set the tone of the day with a positive mindset.
2) Be mindful of your self-talk - you can't shift into a higher vibration by talking negative about yourself.
3) Surround yourself with uplifting people - remove any toxic people in your life, or at least minimize the impact they have on you.
4) Forgive yourself for mistakes - hanging onto something you said or did a few minutes ago, a month ago or fifteen years ago does you no favor. Release that energy.
5) Don't compare yourself to anyone - the only one you can compare yourself to is you.
6) Take care of your body - whether it be what you eat or drink, exercising, and/or accepting and loving it for what it does for you, taking care of your vessel is so important, as it's part of the mind-body-spirit connection.
7) Do something you enjoy or are good at - build your self-esteem and have fun doing things that bring joy to you or tap into your value of accomplishment.
8) Explore your creativity - you don't have to be an artist to tap into your creativity. And while writing, dancing, art, music, etc. can be fantastic ways to feed your spirit, so can things like gardening, cleaning out your closets, or any endeavor that taps into the creative mind.
9) Meditate or practice mindfulness - you need not sit like a monk for hours on end to find that peace within. Even taking three deep breaths undisturbed can alleviate anxiety or stress. Explore mindful eating or walking.
10) Follow your intuition more, your head less - learn to listen and heed the voice within. It's the part of you that won't steer you wrong. Trust yourself more and lead by authenticity than by ego.
These are things which you and only you can offer yourself. If you practice these, even one or two of these, on a regular basis, you will find yourself settling into yourself more, and accepting and loving yourself at a deeper level.
And that's the best gift you can get, regardless of what day it is!