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Self-love is a lifelong journey more than a destination that is going to have ebbs and flows. It truly takes practice. Self-love means that you are silencing your inner critic and judgments, adopting and giving yourself grace when negative thoughts bubble up. Negative thoughts may always have a grip on us and that is more than okay. What is important is that you are taking time to show up for yourself and give yourself the love and respect you deserve. 

There is an estimated $450 billion industry that is dedicated to self-love and self-care practices. Now more than ever, self-love has been celebrated in our culture as a necessary practice when it comes to our happiness. The beautiful shift in culture means that we can take matters into our hands when it comes to self-love and practice it in a way that best works for us.  


Self-love is critical because if you are unable to give love to yourself, you will not be able to give love to others. The old saying that 'you cannot pour from an empty cup' is incredibly true. Self-love is accepting yourself just as you are in every moment and finding love for every version of you. Self-love means that you have respect and patience for yourself and take positive actions for the betterment of yourself. We juggle so many different relationships in our lives - coworkers, romantic, friendship, family, and even relationships with strangers. But no relationship is more important than your relationship with yourself. 

Self-love provides us with so many benefits for our overall well-being and increases our quality of life. You owe it to yourself to recognize and celebrate all the amazing, unique, beautiful things about yourself which is where the self love journey begins! 


Self-love can provide you with so many benefits. Some self-love benefits include:

  • Increased self-awareness
  • Increased joy
  • More self-esteem and confidence
  • Self-forgiveness
  • More happiness
  • Inner peace

On the other side of the coin, more self-love leads to less stress, anxiety, depression, anger, and fatigue. It helps us deal with these negative emotions in healthy ways and even avoid them in certain triggering or charged situations. 


  1. Set achievable, realistic goals. The everyday 'little wins' are wonderful ways you can feel pride and love for yourself. They should be small achievable steps so that you can fuel yourself with positive emotions and feel accomplished. 
  2. Feel your feelings. Suppressing negative emotions and thoughts is going to harm you because they often time build up. By leaning into challenging emotions, you will be better able to face and process them when they arise.
  3. Know when to say no. Saying no is not something you should ever feel shame or guilt about and is a positive way to fuel self-love. It fosters feelings of self-respect which in return lead to self-love. When you say no to someone or something else, it means you are saying yes to you! 
  4. Practice positive self-care. Self-love can stem from your habits and self-care routine. Do things that will help you feel good about yourself, like cleaning up your space, having strong personal hygiene, and adopting healthy daily habits.
  5. Set boundaries. Boundaries can be tricky because sometimes it means setting boundaries with people you love dearly. They are put in place as a protective measure and let us build positive fundamentals like trust and safety with both ourselves and those around us. 
  6. Practice gratitude for yourself. Practicing gratitude is a beautiful way to foster self-love because it helps you hone in on the things you appreciate about yourself. If you are practicing gratitude for yourself, your mind's focus will shift from criticism to praise and negativity to positivity. You can do this with a list, journal, or meditation. 
  7. Limit screen time when it comes to social media. It can be so fun to watch tutorials and browse for inspiration, but sometimes these things lead to a comparison game because so much of what is on social media is not real. Our mind tricks us into thinking our lives should look more like we see online and that can be to our detriment. 
  8. Talk to yourself like you would talk to a friend. Think of yourself as your own friend. You probably build your friends up, speak kindly to them, and give them compliments. Try adopting the same tone and love for yourself as you would them! 


Here are 5 ways to use gratitude to practice self-love.

  1. Start a self-love gratitude list. Write out all of the amazing, special, unique things that you love about yourself. If you need a little inspiration, you can write about your intellect, your character, your values, your hobby, your passions, your intangible traits, or your memories. It does not have to be a list that focuses on physical if that is something that you struggle with! Lean into the beauty of the other wonderful parts of yourself.
  2. Show your body appreciation. By moving your body, nourishing it with healthy foods, or indulging in a self-care practice, you will foster feelings of self-love for your body.
  3. Practice being present and in the moment with yourself. The amazing thing about gratitude is that it allows us to be wholly present. We can find beauty in the small things about our days and romanticize them, which helps us fall in love with the life we are living.
  4. Appreciate the details of your life. Self-love can stem from the life you are leading. Find gratitude in the day-to-day parts of your life and lean into reflecting on what makes those things beautiful.
  5. Adopt a gratitude journaling habit. Gratitude is a high-vibration emotion. This means that the more you use the tool of gratitude, the more beauty you will start to recognize around you. This will have a domino effect in every aspect of your life, including your own self-love. You will find your self-love increasing through the power of gratitude. Positive psychology research has proven that gratitude boosts self-esteem and self-love. 

We only have so much time and energy in our days and should be very protective of those two things. Self-love is something that is worth investing in for the betterment of your mental, physical, and emotional health and well-being.

It is important to remember that self love does not come overnight and every day is going to look a little different and some days will absolutely be easier than others when it comes to this practice. Remember to give yourself grace in this journey and fall in love with the journey rather than the idea of the destination of full self-love. Self-love is a process and it starts with you being able to acknowledge it and work towards it every single day. Take it one day at a time and it will be a beautiful ride! 


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