Guest Author: Abbie Chandler
Earlier this week, we celebrated Valentine’s Day. I say celebrated but, let’s face it, some of us were probably pretending like it didn’t exist and tried to ignore the hundreds of couples out and about. All too often, we share love with others; whether it be a partner, family or even friends, but what about yourself? Do you show yourself any love?
It’s very common for us to forget to love ourselves but it’s something that we should not dismiss. It’s important to love yourself; for who you are, what you’ve achieved and what you’ve yet to achieve, regardless of how small they are.
A big part of loving yourself is self-care, especially for those of us who live with any sort of condition or illness. People don’t realise the impact that these conditions can have on, not only ourselves, but the people around us. It can be exhausting, stressful and upsetting, especially when paired with other people’s lack of compassion and understanding. You’re probably wondering what is self-care, right? Well it’s the activities we pursue to look after ourselves.
So, without further ado, here are my top ten tips for self-care and loving yourself:
1. Learn to say no. Every once in a while, it’s okay to say no. A lot of the time we overrun ourselves because we don’t want to disappoint and let anyone down, but we can’t carry this on forever. Occasionally we must realise that we need down-time; a chance to refresh ourselves. Reschedule that lunch date, your friends will understand.
2. Don’t dwell on your mistakes. Dwelling on our mistakes gets us down. There’s no other way about it. It’s good to take our mistakes and use them to better ourselves, but that’s where we should draw the line. Mistakes have been made, they’re in the past and the past can’t be changed. Leave it, move on, and do better. Oh, and FORGIVE YOURSELF.
3. Don’t let others get you down. Some people don’t realise how hurtful some of their comments and actions can be, while others do but choose to disregard it. Unfortunately, we don’t have control over what other people choose to do, but we do have control over whether we let it affect us. It can be hard, yes, but if we let it get us down, then they’ve won.
4. Be active in your hobbies. Do something you love! Whether it’s reading your favourite book, knitting, cross stitch, cooking, just do it. Doing something we enjoy is something that will definitely help us feel better. If you don’t know what your hobby is, or what you love doing, then find it. You’ll not regret it.
5. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. This is one thing a lot of us struggle with. We resist asking others for help for many reasons; fear of looking weak, fear of burdening others, even the stubbornness to be independent. Don’t succumb to these feelings. Asking for help might be the best thing you do.
6. Remember, and celebrate, your strengths. Recognising your strengths is a hard task for everyone, but being confident in those strengths is even harder. We oftentimes doubt ourselves and our abilities. Knowing what your strengths are can make you feel valued, confident and worth something. Don’t dismiss it!
7. Pick your friends. Our friends can be one of our biggest support communities. It’s important to make sure that the friends you have are going to be there when you need them. If you aren’t friends with someone for the right reasons, it, and they, can bring you down. It’s better to have a small number of close friends, than a big number of fake and disloyal friends.
8. Don’t lose hope. Losing hope is the best way to bring ourselves down. Don’t do it. Keep that hope going, sometimes it’s all you have. You’ve got this!
9. Treat yourself. By this, I’m not talking about going out and spending £1000 all at once… I mean if you want to, by all means, but I’m talking anything. Buy that cake from the coffee shop, book that trip you’ve always wanted to go on or just do nothing and watch that film you’ve always wanted to watch. Reality is, treating yourself, always makes us feel great.
10. Celebrate your victories. Your victories, whether big or small, are always something worth celebrating. I mean, come on, you did it! You rocked. Embrace it, celebrate it, shout about it.
So, there we have it, my top ten tips on how to self-care, and in turn love yourself. We love you, so why shouldn’t you love yourself?
Bio: Abbie is visiting the blog all the way from the UK. She is a college student who lives with a chronic illness called Joint Hypermobility Syndrome, and as a result have other (undiagnosed) chronic illnesses too. Abbie’s goal as a blogger is to share her story to try and support others going through the same thing and raise awareness for chronic pain sufferers.
Check out her site. Abbie, thanks for stopping by this week!
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