By Rachel Chemerynski
If you haven’t already noticed by the television ads, red and pink decor, and giant teddy bears lining store windows, it’s plain to see that the holiday of love, Valentine’s Day, is just around the corner. While this time is typically spent expressing your love for others—with love letters, proposals, roses, and boxed chocolate—we think it’s just as important to take a step back and remember to love yourself. Don’t know where to start? We’ve done the homework for you; just follow our six steps below on how to love yourself and you’ll be feeling the mushy gushy, loving feelings in no time!
Write it Out
As humans, we tend to focus on the negatives, or everything that is going “wrong” in our lives. We’re our own number-one critics, after all. But if you look close enough, the glass really is half full…we promise.
One of the best ways to bring self-love back in to your day-to-day lifestyle is by writing in a journal. If you don’t have a journal, that’s ok. Simply take out a pen and piece of paper, and write down everything you are grateful for, as well as everything you love about yourself. Read this list whenever you need a feel-good boost!
Need some extra guidance? We adore Gabrielle Bernstein’s latest book May Cause Miracles, which takes you on a step-by-step journey toward self-love and unlimited happiness.
We can’t think of a better way to give yourself a big, fat, juicy kiss than by pampering yourself with a massage. Keep your heart healthy (both literally and figuratively) with a deep tissue massage or relax by letting the stress melt away with a traditional Swedish. Search SpaFinder’s site for current massage specials at spas near you.
Can’t afford to splurge on a massage? Give yourself a full-body massage at home with a high-quality oil such as sesame, coconut or olive oil. According to Dr. John Douillard, this popular Ayurvedic technique of self-massage, known as Abhyanga, is known to prevent psychological imbalances, promote flexibility, and create luscious, glowing skin. The Institute for Integrative Nutrition offers a simple DIY guide to practicing self-massage here, so that you can take it into your own home. Have a partner or someone you can trade massage services with? Check out these five tips for DIY Couples Massage!
Bonus: Give dry brushing a try, a spa treatment known to improve circulation and renew the skin (win, win)!
Nourish Your Body
What better way to say “I love you” to yourself than by nourishing your body with foods that make you feel your best self? Listen to your body to learn which foods make you feel happy, vibrant, and alive (and which foods simply make you feel “blah!”). We like to stock up on clean foods that come from nature, rather than a package. Get some tasty recipe inspiration from Jared Koch’s new book, The Clean Plates Cookbook. Then, craft up a home-cooked meal all for yourself, savoring every last bite. Who said dining had to be in a group setting?
Also, be sure to check out all of our spa-inspired healthy recipes!
Get Your Beauty Sleep
We all know how vital sleep is for our overall health and wellness (mind, body and soul) but if we’re being completely honest most of us aren’t getting enough of it. In fact, studies show that people are sleeping less than ever, with the average adult squeezing in less than seven hours a night!
What gives? Well, technology is partially to blame. As the evening unwinds, be sure to take a break from Pinterest, texting and playing on your iPhone to unplug. If you need more help with prepping your body for a solid night of ZZZs, check out these handy lifestyle tips to create a more peaceful slumber.
Looking for a new bedroom arrangement? Check out these nine feng shui bedroom design tips for an easy, restful, and peaceful night.
Practice Yoga or Meditation
Yoga and meditation are both excellent ways to deepen your relationship with your body and your mind. When you are on the mat (or in your meditation space), you’re given a rare opportunity to be completely alone with yourself and your thoughts. Before you begin your practice, set an intention for yourself, whether it’s love, joy, or gratitude. While these practices are most known for reducing stress, they’re also good for your general health and body. For instance, studies have shown that meditation is good for the brain (it increases mental awareness), and yoga can keep the heart healthy. Who knew? To incorporate into your own life, follow these five steps to a yoga-based meditation.
Explore Your Passions
Feeling a lack of passion lately (and we’re not just talking about libido here)? Don’t worry; with a few simple tweaks, you can get that fiery drive back in no time!
For starters, set aside the time to create a vision board with everything you want out of life (we tried The Lifeboard)—both small and large. Post inspirational words, photo cutouts from magazines, or anything that makes you feel inspired. Seeing these visions in front of you every day can help keep you motivated and in high spirits. Also, check out these five steps to embrace your best you, always.
How do you plan to give yourself a little more love this Valentine’s Day season?
You might also like:
Love Yourself: Top 10 Best Solo Spas
Cardio Workouts: Why It’s Important to Keep Your Heart Rate Up
Gift Ideas for Valentine’s Day (for Him & Her!)
Top 10 Best Spas for a Girls’ Getaway or Bachelorette Party
Comfort Foods Made Healthy: 12 Recipes to Satisfy Winter Cravings
Rachel Chemerynski is a certified health coach and freelance writer living in Boston, Massachusetts. She is the founder of Healthy Chicks, a wellness community dedicated to inspiring twenty-something women to live happier, healthier, more satisfying lives.