Oh Valentine's Day...
Some love it, some love to hate it. Some feel it's a great opportunity to stock up on delicious chocolate, some feel it is a marketing scheme to make us spend money.
Whatever your thoughts are on Valentine's Day, it's certainly an opportunity to focus on the most important person in your life: YOU.
This year, I encourage you to work on loving yourself. Now, it's important to note I'm not a social worker or therapist. I share these tips with you without claiming to be an expert in this area.
When it comes to working on self-love, it is sometimes hard to know where to start. Unfortunately, most of us don't magically start loving ourselves overnight. It's a lifelong process that requires patience, persistence and LOTS of self-compassion. To get you started, here are a few tips.
1. Start With Self-Acceptance
If you've spent your life at war with yourself, it may seem impossible to picture a day where you will truly love yourself. This is OKAY. Sometimes, it's helpful to start by focussing on accepting yourself: your strengths, passions, imperfections, personality traits, etc. You don't don't need to love these aspects of yourself, but you can work on accepting they are part of who you are.
2. Make Time for Things You Love
Working on self-love means making space for what makes you happy. What activities make you smile? What sparks your passion? What helps you de-stress? Whatever it is you answered, make room for these things. When you practice self-care, you are telling yourself you are worthy.
3. Feel Your Emotions
Valentine's Day may be difficult for you. Maybe you recently lost someone important to you or you ended a relationship. It's okay to struggle. It's okay to feel sad. It's okay to not be okay. No good comes from thinking "I shouldn't be feeling this way". Allow space for all of your emotions. They are valid, and so are your experiences.
4. Clean Out Your Social Media
Take a good look at what messages you are getting from social media. Commit to unfollowing any pages or people that do not make you feel good about yourself. Instead, follow pages dedicated to promoting body positivity, self-love and happiness. Some examples:
- Anastasia Amour
- The Moderation Movement
- Body Positive Australia
- Jennifer Rollin, MSW, LCSW-C
- The Body Is Not An Apology
- Julie Duffy Dillon
- Marci RD
- Christy Harrison, MPH, RD, CD
- Insight To Action Counselling
5. Allow Yourself To Eat What You REALLY Want
A very important part of self-care and self-love is letting go of restrictions and the diet mentality, which only serve to keep you feeling shame. No matter your size or shape, you deserve to feed your body and soul with foods that nourish AND satisfy. No food is off limits, so dig into your favourite meal or snack!
Finally, remember - You are worthy. You are enough. YOU ARE LOVED!
Happy Valentine's Day!
P.S. Do you feel you need more support in your food peace journey? Join my FREE Facebook community, Food Peace Ontario, by clicking here.