The joys of life should line up like words in a sentence. It is important to do things that we like, to take advantage of opportunities that present themselves without thinking about them too long, without letting them slip by, but also without greater expectations than living life. We can summarize this in a few important words that follow each other without a comma: Love yourself and let yourself be loved.
Learning to love yourself is not easy, but it is essential for others to love us. Fall in love with your body, your mistakes, your gifts, everything that excites you, the way you smile and go through life.
“When I was five years old, my mother told me that happiness is the key to life. When I went to school I was asked what I would like to be when I grow up. I replied, ‘Happy.’ I was told that I did not understand the question and I replied to them: ‘You did not understand life.’ ”
Loving yourself is fundamental to feeling good, enjoying life and being happy. It is difficult because we like to criticize ourselves and so can turn into our worst enemy.
Our self-confidence is based on the way we see, assess and evaluate ourselves. The Argentine psychologist Walter Riso explains the concept of self-confidence in its four components:
- Self-concept – what you think of yourself
- Self-image – how well you like yourself
- Self-empowerment – how much you reward yourself
- Self-efficacy – what kind of trust you have in yourself
In order to strengthen these four elements of self-confidence and to live in peace and happily with ourselves, we propose some strategies below that are not too difficult to implement and should help you to love yourself and all that beautiful to learn to appreciate in you.
Do not compare yourself
Even in adolescence, we begin to analyze our appearance thoroughly. We primarily compare ourselves with those who we find more beautiful or who have other attributes that we would like to have. The result is that something always seems to be missing or is too much. We criticize our hair color, our legs, our teeth. We devote ourselves much more to evaluating our alleged faults than our strengths.
Such comparisons are useless, because the concept of beauty varies greatly from person to person. What we perceive as beautiful can be perceived by another person as ugly, and vice versa. The comparison is therefore unnecessary.
“Wanting to be another person means underestimating who you are.”
Discover the things you like about yourself and underline them. Dress how you like it, not how others would expect you to. It only matters that you feel good.
There will always be someone more beautiful or uglier than you, but who cares, you have unique qualities that no one else has. Discover and develop them.
Invent your own beauty concept
Beauty is not only subjective, it also depends on fashion. For example, a fat, white woman with pink lips was considered a beauty a few years ago, whereas today’s ideals of beauty look very different.
Hence, the best that you can do is create your own concept of beauty. With this in mind, Walter Riso claims that the healthiest premise is:
“You can choose your own concept of beauty. It’s not easy, but it’s worth trying. There is no need to follow fashion or try to align your concept with that of others. You just have to please yourself. “
Nor are there any real reasons for one particular concept of beauty to be inferior or superior to another. It is therefore important not to be beautiful for others, but for yourself.
If you don’t praise yourself, don’t give yourself time, deny your feelings, your self-esteem will suffer. Love yourself, because this love is basically nothing other than what you can later give to others. Use your self-love to learn what love is and what isn’t: For example, if your partner doesn’t care about you, doesn’t ask how you are, doesn’t call you, and isn’t interested in you, love can’t to be so far away. If you lack self-love, you will still not look for a way out of this situation.
Take care of your body and mind, do things that you like and that give you joy. Smile and go out to share your smile. If you enjoy going to the movies, do so even if your date is canceled. If you enjoy riding a bike, do it. If you enjoy reading, buy books.
Eliminate repressive thoughts
Walter Riso identifies four repressive thoughts that prevent us from increasing our self-esteem.
- The power of habit : These are different behaviors that are considered common and that we all exhibit from time to time, but which leave no room for innovation and change.
- The power of rationalization: This means that we place logic far above feelings. However, many situations require compassion and empathy and hardly any math.
- The cult of self-control : This is about controlling one’s feelings and emotions. Of course, some self-control is necessary to avoid destructive behaviors, but we must say goodbye to the absolute restraint of our emotions and feelings.
- The cult of humility: this will lead you not to appreciate your successes or your efforts. It’s not about bragging about successes, but rather recognizing your own potential, with no excuses or guilt. You should be realistic, know your qualities, and appreciate your efforts.
“If you are not good at loving yourself, you will have difficulty loving someone else because you will invest time and energy in another person that you do not even indulge yourself.”