You need to love yourself first before loving anyone else. I personally would also like to believe that if you want to be loved, you need to learn how to love yourself, too. In fact, Self Love is at the root of it all. And I am not meaning being selfish and egocentric, but accepting yourself and appreciating the person you are.

Inspired by the concept of Self Love and the healthy relationship with yourself, I decided I want to expand on this topic in February – the month of LOVE. The relationship with your inner self is at the core of any other relationships you have or will have, so let’s focus on Self Love this month and inspire ourselves to strengthen this relationship. Here are 10 self love practices to embrace this February.

Create loving, positive affirmations for yourself.

We are always so focused on what we don’t like about ourselves. While being self-critical is good in terms of development and growth, it can also be a toxic way of living. A good idea of expressing Self Love is to focus on the positives. Try by writing down things you like about yourself. And keep those affirmations somewhere close so you can see them daily!

A smile is contagious and I have found for myself that a great way to start the day is to look at yourself in the mirror and smile at your own reflection. Try to do this every morning for a week or more and you’ll notice the change in your mood.

Smile at yourself.

Take care of your mind.

We often get lost in all the work and chores we have to do, but give yourself a couple of minutes of complete silence every day. Gо out on the terrace, breathe in and out, meditate. Let go of all the negative thoughts and tell yourself how important you are.

Nowadays, pretty much everything is about how we look and we got lost in the understanding of what’s truly valuable. You are valuable because you are YOU, not because of your body. You are valuable because you are funny, smart, caring, you name it! :)

Your value isn’t equal to how your body looks.

Stop comparing yourself.

Comparing ourselves to others comes natural, but it can be emotionally dangerous. Embracing who you are and how you are is the best favour you can do yourself. Love yourself the way you are, and do not let comparison put you down.  You are worthier than you think.

Seize the moment and the opportunities you get. Trust yourself and don’t let your fears guide you. Following your passion fearlessly is the route to self love.

Accept the opportunities life gives you or create your own.

Forgive yourself.

We all make mistakes but we need to learn how to forgive ourselves. Let go of embarrassment and self-shaming. You can’t change things but you can control how you accept them.

Let go of toxic people, and surround yourself with loving and caring ones. They will remind you how amazing you are.

Surround yourself with the right people.

Learn to say “No”.

Part of the Self Love journey is understanding what’s good for you and what’s not. You need to learn how to prioritise yourself and that involves saying “No” to things and people that are not good for you.

There’s always this one place where you feel totally at ease, calm, happy, positive, and high on life. Go there when you are through hard times, or imagine yourself being there.

Find your happy place.