It’s easy to get caught up in how society tells us to feel about our appearance and lifestyle that sometimes our own crushing self-doubts consume us, and we often forget how unique we genuinely are. We’re always telling ourselves that we’re not good/thin/smart/talented enough when in reality we’re all beautiful in our own ways. I want to inspire anyone that's reading this to practice the art of falling in yourself all over again, right here, in this very moment, no changes necessary. Here are 5 gentle ways you can start taking practicing self-love and self-care.

Write yourself a love note

I’m serious about one. Get comfy with a notebook and a pen, and write yourself a good, old-fashioned love letter. Tell yourself about every beautiful quirk and admirable quality you have, all of your strengths, and everything you’ve accomplished so far in life. Let yourself be completely selfish and vain, even for just a moment and just gush about how awesome you are. Flirt with yourself. Pay yourself some awesome compliments. Just do it, sis.

Say affirmations

This one might feel really weird the first time you do it, but just trust me and get through any sarcasm. Pose in front of your bathroom or bedroom mirror, and give yourself a little pep talk or pick me up if you will. If you've been dealing with confidence issues, talk yourself through it and talk to yourself kindly. Look directly into that mirror and remind him/ her that they’re a beautiful person worthy of a beautiful life.

Be still and sit with yourself

Whether you’re spiritual/religious or not, taking a little time every day to do whatever nourishes your spirit can be a surefire way to practice some self-love. Perhaps it’s reading your religion’s bible or meditating or listening to some calming, soothing music that takes you away…whatever it is, take some time each day to get in touch with your inner-self.

Give yourself permission to be you

Try to find the beauty in every moment. That starts with giving yourself permission to be unapologetically and authentically you. When we were kids, we needed permission from our parents, from our teachers, even our elders. Now, we have grown into our own skin. Our minds are conditioned to ask for permission. But to truly unlock our full potentials, we must take ownership of our lives and our life experiences. You are capable of accomplishing great things just as you are. You don’t need to be anything or anyone else to be successful and remember, success is objective.

Release guilt and doubts

There are probably a bunch of memories that you’ve been holding on to for a while. Maybe you didn’t get that promotion at work, or a friendship you had invested a lot of time into is over. Perhaps you’re having a really tough time getting through your school work or career. Whatever it may be, you have to learn to just breathe and let it all go. In fact, you’ve got to learn to let go of anything that’s holding you back or causing you to doubt yourself. Realize that you’re not perfect and that mistakes can be made. In fact, they are expected as a part of life. As long as you learn from them and become better, you’re doing just fine. Whatever has been weighing heavy on your mind, free yourself from it and let go. Forgive yourself. Give permission to have a fresh start and believe that you can achieve anything you work toward…because guess what? You can.

What are some ways that you love yourself?

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