By now you’ve heard that you need to love yourself, but how do you do that exactly and where do you start? Because loving yourself can be overwhelming & most people don’t know where or how to start.
We all have a critical voice, the voice that whispers, I’m too fat, I’m not pretty enough, I’m not good enough, I will never find love, I’m not courageous enough to follow my dreams, and on and on. As you know, this voice doesn’t make you feel good and listening to these thoughts affect your mood, behavior and the decisions you make, and ultimately determines the quality of your life.
The key is to become aware of your negative thoughts and not be afraid of your critical voice. When you resist this voice the louder these negative thoughts become, and the more frustrated you’re going to get. And here’s the paradox; the more you love yourself and your inner critical voice, the quieter these negative thoughts will become.
You may be thinking, “How so?”
Well, try to look at your critical voice as a wounded child who is afraid and needs your attention. Somewhere along the way you picked up beliefs from what you were told as a child, your life experiences, what people have said to you, and messages from the media who are always flirting with your mind to look a certain way so that you can be more desirable to men and match society’s idea of true beauty.
Over time the mind gets into the habit of thinking a certain way and automatically you believe what it tells you. But you are so much more than your mind. Your true self (your eternal spirit) already knows you’re beautiful, whole, smart, good enough, lovable, and capable.
If you try to just heal the mind on its own and neglect your spirit, you will always be haunted by these phantom thoughts. So don’t get stuck on giving these thoughts so much credit, energy, and power. They’re only just thoughts and thoughts can be changed. With some willingness, commitment and practice, you can easily switch your focus and retrain your brain to have your mind work with you not against you.
Now let’s keep this real, this isn’t to say that you’re going to be thinking positive thoughts 24/7. According to research on average we think 2,500 thoughts per hour. Phew. Just thinking about that makes me feel tired. And these thoughts are usually on repeat. How many of these thoughts do you think are beautiful and empowering?
I know for me personally, not all of my thoughts are beautiful. But what really matters are the thoughts that we choose to take ownership that controls our life that we need to become aware of.
You can be positive and still have negative thoughts floating around in your mind, however, you get to choose which ones you’re going to dance with.
So your first step toward loving yourself is to change the way you talk about yourself.
Here are 4 steps to help you get started to stop being a slave to your critical voice and become the CEO of your mind to create a better future and be happier in the now.
1. WHAT ARE YOU FEEDING YOUR MIND?
Become aware as to what and who you are listening to on a regular basis. What kinda tape is playing in your mind? Grab a piece of paper and write down all the negative thoughts that haunt you on a regular basis. Then, make the INTENTION to no longer choose to believe these negative thoughts. For example, you can say something like, “From now on, I am free to think what I wish and I don’t have to believe everything I hear.”
2. LOVE YOUR INNER CRITIC
Let’s say you keep having this one thought, “I will never find love.” Instead of allowing this to keep playing in your mind, you respond from a neutral place by saying, “Oh it’s you again – you know I’ve been listening to you for most of my life & I’m done with you. But before I let you go, I just wanna ask you something; where did you come from?”
Now, become the detective in your own life and go back to connect the dots to discover where these negative thoughts came from. Once you approach your critical voice with a sense of curiosity and love, then you’re out of the dark and not giving it power.
Part of loving yourself is allowing your inner critic to come to the surface and marinating it with love.
3. CHOOSE ONE EMPOWERING THOUGHT
Instead of feeling overwhelmed, choose ONE negative thought that keeps playing in your mind on a daily basis. For example, let’s say one of your limiting beliefs is, “I am not good enough.” Replace it with your soul truth, “I am good enough. I believe in myself and my ability to create my dream future.” Or whatever it is you’re desiring. You will need to repeat this new empowering thought daily and consistently. Why? Because you need to create new patterns of neural pathways in your brain that eventually lead your mind to think differently.
4. CREATE A ‘TREASURE YOURSELF’ TOOLBOX
The truth is, you are not always going to want to talk sweetly to yourself. This is why you need to do something daily that changes the way you think. If you find yourself stuck in a negative pattern and you can’t get out of it, stop what you’re doing and physiologically do something different. For example:
- Go outside into nature for 10mins & talk sweetly to yourself – “Nature is fuel for the soul, ” says Richard Ryan
- Create a treasure yourself jar & everyday write down one quality you like about yourself
- Before bed, read a page from an inspirational book
- Workout in the morning to move out any negative energy
- Watch a motivational video for 15mins during your lunch break
- Listen to an inspirational podcast when cleaning your apartment
- Listen to uplifting music when stuck in traffic
- Journal for 10mins in the afternoon on your break
Do what works for you. All of these activities will help shift your energy and change the channel in your mind from a negative station to a more positive one.
Your mind was designed to help you move forward and work in your favor. You have the power to control your mind and be whoever you wish to be in this moment. Instead of obsessing over the thoughts that don’t serve you, start obsessing about what does make you feel good – it’s a matter of making this a habit to think this way.
What is one empowering thought you are going to choose to say daily? Comment below – I would love to know!
P.S. How to turn self love into a lifestyle