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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Elon chapter.

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the views of Her Campus. 


If you believe that being in a relationship will be the thing that makes you feel “whole” again, think again. 


We often enter relationships with the idea that another person will automatically make us feel happy, or make us feel whole again, but that’s not the reality at all. Happiness starts within ourselves and like many college students, I am still trying to figure this all out too. I have learned over the past few months that you will never truly feel whole with someone else until you love yourself first. 


Sometimes it seems hard. We’ve long been raised to put others before ourselves and to ensure our actions align with the expectations of others. And all of this makes loving ourselves and prioritizing our own happiness seem selfish. 


It’s not. 


We can practice self-love, but before we do that, let’s make sure we understand what self-love means. Self-love is having a high regard for not only yourself but your own happiness and general well-being. Self-love means not sacrificing your happiness just to please someone else. Self-love is knowing all that you deserve. Here are some of my self-love tips: 


Remember you are worthy. 

Knowing your self-worth is knowing that you won’t settle for anything less than what you deserve. Everyone is incredible and deserves to be surrounded by people who love you for all you are and uplift you. If you know your self-worth before looking to get into a relationship, you won’t be looking for somebody to complete you, because you will know you are whole all by yourself. You are worthy of time. You are worthy of energy. You are worthy of everything a relationship takes. Knowing your own worth will minimize the likelihood of you settling for less than what you deserve in your relationships.


Relationships are a want, not a need. 

Relationships are fun. Quite frankly, they are a bonus in life. But you don’t need to be in a relationship to be happy. You are more than okay just by yourself. If you enter a relationship thinking you need it to feel  “whole” again, you may run into the risk of becoming dependent on someone else. Being in a real relationship should be a beautiful, incredible addition to your already complete life.


Talk about yourself in a positive way.

The way you talk to and about yourself matters more than you may even realize. Talk about yourself positively and compliment yourself for all the good that you are. Think of all of your great accomplishments. We are so quick to catch our weaknesses and we are our own biggest critics. But start a little at a time — a full day of no negativity. It’s more than okay to slip up, but when you do, think of all of the incredible qualities you possess to overlap the less happy thoughts.  


List your goals and the things you want to achieve.  

Journaling has been one of my favorite activities over the past few months. The Five Minute Journal is my absolute favorite. Each morning, I map out all of the things I am so lucky to have in my life in addition to my goals for the day, whether they are big or small, it makes me feel good. And then at the end of each day, I revisit my journal and reflect. We spend so much time dwelling on what we can do better, or what went wrong, and journaling really gives you that opportunity to celebrate all of your achievements — whether it is drinking more water or acing a difficult exam. I couldn’t recommend it more. 


Do something that you love each day.

We are often so caught up in the hustle and bustle of daily life that we forget to do things for ourselves. Even if it’s just for five minutes, stop and take a little time to put yourself and your needs first. It’ll make you feel good, trust me. 


Miranda is a junior at Elon University pursuing her B.A. in Journalism and Communication Design with a minor in Dance. She is the Lifestyle Editor at Elon News Network. In her spare time, Miranda enjoys shopping, traveling and spending time with friends and family.