February is the month of love in my eyes, thanks to Valentine’s Day, so I figured it would be the best time to remind you babes that before you choose to LOVE anyone else ya’ll gotta choose to love thy (your) self first. Yes, love is a choice – more on that in a bit.
Since I was a kid, I thought finding a significant other would be easy. I’d meet someone I’m attracted to, we’d have fun together, then this person would become my boyfriend, we’d love each other, and possibly get married. I’ve learned, in my wee 27 years of life, there is so much more to a relationship than attraction and love. A good relationship blossoms from a friendship, respect for one another, similar values, and attraction. And, that takes time to develop. Also, the universe and God do their thing too. Social media and movies have made being in love and relationships seem like an easy thing to nab, but relationships and love involve work and commitment. And, most importantly the choice to love.
Lets be honest, how many times has a family member or significant other done something that hurt your feelings? Mom, Brother, Best Friend? I’ve been hurt by them and I’ve totally done things that have hurt their feelings, but that doesn’t mean we stop loving each other. We’ve never done anything severe to stop loving one another, but through it all, love is a choice. Through the good and the not so good times we still choose to love each other and it’s not easy – I promise this will explain how to love thy self.
Before I learned how to love myself, that statement (love thyself) made me roll my eyes. It was vague and hard to gauge, because I didn’t know how to love myself. Is that giving myself a hug? Telling myself I love you?! 🤷🏽♀️ It has taken me a while (almost my entire 20s of being single) to figure it out and I’m still working on it, but I really wanted to share what has helped me love myself, because loving ourselves is so so so important. Loving yourself shows others how you deserve to be loved, it encourages you to do and be the best version of yourself, but it also helps you be happy with who you are.
Love in any relationship takes effort and the choice to continue to love your significant other, through the good and bad, so you have to understand loving yourself is going to take the same effort too. You have to make the decision to love yourself and work at it. It’s not easy and I’m constantly figuring it out, but below are some ways that have helped me learn how to love myself and I hope they can help you too.
“Don’t be with someone because you’re scared to be lonely. Being alone is a luxury. “
I’m scared of forcing a relationship with someone I know is wrong for me, that doesn’t get me, than I am of feeling lonely. I’d rather be alone, because I could always choose what makes me happy, than suffer around someone that doesn’t. Relationships are more than date nights, making out, and calling someone your own.The person you’re in a relationship with should be a friend, care about your well being, be there when you need them the most. Simply be a support and an addition to your life, not your 🌍. If someone you’re dating isn’t that, but you’re too scared to be alone, trust me, embrace being single. There is no need to be scared of being lonely. Being single is gift we need to embrace. The independence and freedom is a luxury. You can learn about the things you like and don’t like. You can travel, chase after your dreams, but most importantly you can learn about yourself. Loving yourself is choosing time with yourself than forcing it with someone that doesn’t get you or make you happy. When you’re happy doing you there is no thought of loneliness.
“Stop hating yourself for everything you aren’t and start loving yourself for everything you already are.”
As a blogger it’s so easy to compare myself to others that are more successful or have more followers than me. I’ve shared a bit of that comparison trap in my Cheers to 2017 blog posts. I’ve doubted everything about myself and thought it was the reason why I wasn’t as successful as other bloggers or Youtubers was because of what I’m about. That comparison trap made me sad and super negative, but one day I started to focus on what I really enjoyed sharing, what I liked and things started to change. I noticed my following grew as I started to be more me and I’d get DMs from babes telling me how much I’ve inspired them with my honesty and realness – things that are so me. I realized others started to love me for me and not for what I wasn’t and I started to love those things about me too. When I stopped forcing myself to do and be what I wasn’t, I discovered I was really happy not trying to fit in. I’ve been able to evolve IMLVH and that makes me sooo unbelievably happy. I’ve learned loving myself is embracing what I like to do and embracing who I am.
“Walk away from what no longer deserves your presence.”
Loving yourself is walking away from people (friends, dues, and family) that don’t treat you right. Sometimes we seek their approval, but that has no power over who you are, embracing yourself and your happiness. You have the power to feel happy and you don’t need people in your presence that don’t add happiness and love to your life.
Bad Friends are those that make you feel bad about not doing what they want to do. They aren’t kind, they make fun of you, or make you feel bad. Real friends support you, lift you up. encourage you try new things, and ya’ll allow each other to be honest about likes and dislikes. If friends make you feel bad for who you are, who you want to be, and what you like – they no longer deserve your presence
Douchie Dudes are the dudes that don’t treat you like a human. Those that make you feel crappy about who you are and don’t realize the importance of treating you with respect. Loving yourself is walking away from dudes that see you less than you are – strong, smart, beautiful, and something to be reckoned with. The dudes that deserve your presence respect you and see you for everything you are.
Mean Familia are the family members that are just as toxic as a bad friend and a douchebag. I know my Mom has had to walk away from family members that don’t treat her with respect and love – like family should. It breaks my heart that family can be destructive, when they should be the most important source of unconditional love, but sometimes they’re not. When your own family is negative and not treating you with the love and support you deserve, loving yourself means walking away from blood and surrounding yourself by others that treat you like family.
“Lastly, do things that make you happy.”
If you don’t know what makes you happy, don’t worry. We’re constantly evolving and our taste changes – trust me it took me a while to figure out what makes me happy. But, the best way to find out what makes you happy is to pay attention to the giddy feeling inside from whatever you do.mWhen you start paying attention to those feelings and trusting the excitement that comes from whatever you’re it, that becomes a good rule of thumb and gauge to find out what makes you happy. For me it’s choosing fun nail colors, waking up early for a workout, and investing in something I really want, like my Gucci Slides (Shared a full vlog on how to save for Gucci Slides). As you choose to do the little things that light you up, you’ll get more courage to embrace the bigger situations that light you up. The more I chose the things that make me happy (working on my blog, creating Youtube videos, being a homebody, who wears vintage denim, and loves self-help books) the happier I’ve become. Loving yourself is choosing what makes you happy.