Why Self-Love Is Important for Mental Health
Welcome back to the 2019 Selfie Love Challenge! Be sure to subscribe to both My Bipolar Mind and Budding Joy to stay updated on the #SelfieLove2019 Challenge! Today is day four of the challenge which brings us to Sunday, February 17th, 2019!
Most of us have been told that it is important to learn how to love yourself, but not all of us really know why. But part of caring for your mental health is loving yourself. When you think about it, if you are stuck in a room alone with someone that you loathe entirely, you are bound to feel some type of way about it. Being stuck with someone that you are not very fond of can have a huge impact on your mood. It may cause you to feel sad, angry, agitated, or basically any other emotion that implies negativity. So, what happens when the person you are stuck with but cannot tolerate very well happens to be yourself?
I have spent years hating everything about myself; from the way I looked to the way I talked. It is only as of recently that I have begun to finally have an understanding of why self-love is important. It is something that I try to work on every day. It is not an easy process by any means. It took years of looking at myself in a distorted light to develop such hate for myself, which means it could take years to undo the damage. It is not something that will or can occur overnight. Self-love takes persistence, patience, nurturing, and time. The first time you finally feel a tinge of self-worth can feel incredibly empowering.
So, how does loving yourself tie in with your mental health and why is it so important? Keep reading to learn a bit more!
Why Loving Yourself Is Important
Loving yourself is imperative no matter how you look at it. For the rest of your life, you have to be around yourself 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You don’t ever get a break from being you or being with yourself. No matter how far you try to run, you will never get away from yourself. So why not try to make life’s journey more tolerable and get to know yourself completely. Learn about your self-worth; your importance. When you learn to love yourself for who you are, flaws and all, you are more likely to be a happier person. I am by no means saying that everything will always be great and cheery, but when you enjoy the company that you’re in it can make all the difference.
When it comes down to it, you are the only person you can truly rely on. Loving yourself can help boost your self-esteem which can, in turn, boost your mood. It can also have a positive impact on your relationships and it can even attract more people who have positive energy surrounding them instead of negativity. Have you ever heard the saying, “Misery loves company?” This happens to ring true.
What Happens When We Don’t Like Ourselves?
I have already touched base on this a bit. But when we don’t like ourselves our self-esteem takes a blow. It can worsen feelings of depression, anxiety, and sadness. Some people sometimes even partake in unhealthy or risk-taking activities because they simply have no respect for themselves. If you have never felt this way, you are very lucky. If you have, there is hope.
When we dislike ourselves, some people take advantage of that and use it as an excuse to treat us poorly. It can make us feel so small and inferior. It can leave us feeling helpless and hopeless. It can, as mentioned above, interfere with our mental health and well-being. It can make us feel overall lousy.
How Can I Begin to Learn to Love Myself?
Once you start to realize how important self-love is, it is time to start looking for ways to enhance how you feel about yourself. There is no right or wrong way to learn self-love. You can start by doing little things you enjoy and that make you happy on a daily basis. Read some of that new book, treat yourself to your favorite comfort food, spend time with your beloved pet(s), take a relaxing bubble bath, work on a hobby. The possibilities are endless. You can also start your day by saying positive affirmations about yourself. Even if you don’t believe what you are telling yourself at first, with practice you will eventually begin believing it. When you get a thought that tells you that you are not good enough, challenge that thought. Tell yourself that you are good enough. If you have to, fake it until you make it. In the long run, you will be glad that you did!
Samantha is the author of "My Bipolar Mind: You're not alone," she is also a freelance writer, blogger, and mental health advocate who runs and manages her own mental health blog MyBipolarMind.com.