5 Things You Can Do Every Day to Practice Self Love

The idea of “self love” has been tossed around in daily conversations, in magazines, and even on Instagram. But what does it even mean? I like to think of self love as acceptance and being kind to yourself in order to try to have a healthy, positive lifestyle and support growth. Here are a few easy ways you can practice self love.

1. Try not to say anything to yourself that you would not say to someone else.

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We can all be a little too hard on ourselves, even when we don’t deserve it. You look down at a disappointing test score and ask yourself: why didn’t you study harder? Why aren’t you smarter? Why can’t you just get an A once? However, it's important to try not to insult yourself, especially when there is nothing you can do about it. I know that personally I say hundreds of things to myself that I would never say to someone else. So hey, try to hold back on the insults a little bit. No one deserves to be talked to like that, including you.

2. Treat yourself to some life experiences.

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While I’m all about buying yourself that eyeshadow palette, outfit, or delicious meal, I think that some real experiences can also be beneficial. I always search for the moments that I said “Wow, I’m so glad I came here today.” This can apply to going out with your friends (even when you have some studying to do), going to a concert, taking a scuba diving class, or going skydiving. It can just be something a little different to change the way you look at your day, and maybe make you a little more grateful!

3. Build a great community around you.

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A big part of self-love, I think, is building a life which allows you to grow. You can’t stop that professor from assigning a ten page essay the day of the final, that jerk from rear ending you on the freeway, or that boy from breaking your heart. But you can control the people around you that are there to love and support you when everything bad in life comes at you all  at once. So create a group around you that pushes you to be great, but understands when you just need a break.

4.Try to avoid comparisons.

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Every woman that you are comparing yourself to is comparing herself to someone else. We all do it, whether we compare ourselves physically, intellectually, or some other way. A way to practice self-love every day is to try to stop these comparisons; you are enough the way that you are!

 5. Take care of your body.

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I know, I know. But think about it. A happier body results in a happier mind. So, take a nap. It seems simple, but being sleep deprived can affect your productivity and even your personality. Taking a few minutes off in your busy college schedule to sleep and relax can really improve your mood and feelings. Eat a real meal, maybe one that isn’t made in a microwave or bought in a drive-thru. Sometimes you don’t know how much you are affected by sleep deprivation and a bad diet until you spend a day taking care of yourself and recovering. Trust me, you’ll feel a lot better!

Self love is a complicated idea that changes from person to person, so what is really comes down to is this: do whatever works for you. In a society with so much pressure to be beautiful, confident, and smart, it helps to have a little self love. Sometimes it can feel like the whole world is against you, so why would you ever be against yourself?