If you spend any amount of time online, you’ve likely seen the term “self-love” thrown around over the last couple years – and for good reasons. It may seem like a trendy buzzword, but it’s a very important part of our mental health and overall wellness. You can’t pour from an empty cup, right?
So what exactly is self-love? By definition, it means “regard for one’s own well being and happiness,” and in practice it’s taking action to ensure that you’re truly caring for yourself, inside and out. When a lot of people think of self-love, their mind goes to exciting things, like getting a massage or going to a fancy dinner. And while there is no problem with treating yourself when your budget allows for it, self-love can also consist of everyday tasks that don’t come at a high price.
But why is self-love so important? Because the most important relationship we have is with ourselves, and it sets the standard for other relationships. This past year has been challenging in ways we would have never imagined, but it’s also shown us how resilient we can be. Remembering to focus on ourselves in times of increased mental tension is not only a practical exercise, but it can be enjoyable too.
Practicing self-love is not one-size-fits-all, and the great part is that it doesn’t have to be expensive. Here are some approachable and low cost ideas to start implementing more self-love into your routine:
- Practice daily positive affirmations. The way you speak to and about yourself matters.
- Prioritize your sleep and sleep hygiene.
- Declutter and reorganize your space.
- Look into local hiking options in your area and spend an afternoon outside. Some businesses may be closed, but nature is always open.
- Plan out your meals for the week. If you really want to take it up a notch, give meal prepping a try.
- Take care of your physical health, including movement and nutrition.
- Limit your time on social media and news apps. Doomscrolling is a real and studies shows that it has a negative impact on our mental health.
- Schedule that therapy session you’ve been putting off.
So while February is the month of love, consider doing something special for the most important person in your life and making yourself a priority. I promise you won’t regret it.