Last Updated on February 8, 2024
The term, self-love, seems simple enough, right? Love yourself.
Why, then, is it so incredibly difficult for us to do?
Perhaps self-love is so hard to achieve because of the nature of human beings. We are complex afterall.
As a reasoning, intelligent species, we have the ability to use logic. We ought to be able to say, life is better when we love ourselves.
Our relationships, our workplace life, and our enjoyment of recreation would all be better if we approached them from a place of self-awareness, self-confidence, and self-love.
For those with a religious belief, it ought to be easy to love oneself as Christianity teaches that we should love ourselves as God loves us. We are his creation and therefore are worthy of self-love.
Yet, somehow it is not that easy, and we struggle to accept ourselves as we are.
In addition to the logical part of our brain, we also have a part of the brain which governs emotions.
Emotions often contradict logic and can create a complex way of viewing our interactions with others and our performance in our careers.
We are our toughest critics.
How many times has a work colleague, your boss, or even a good friend given you a compliment, and your response has been, thank you, but…?
We find it difficult to accept compliments, but are always ready with the reasons we are not deserving of those accolades.
When we write a resume or have a job interview, it can be extremely challenging to talk about our strengths, skills, and good qualities.
We seem to be pulled in two directions: encouraged to better ourselves and believe in ourselves and our capabilities, but also discouraged from recognizing and talking about our strengths.
Why does this dichotomy exist?
When we are young, we are taught not to brag or be boastful. We are told not to think too highly of ourselves as this shows pride and we should not be prideful.
So, we must be confident but also humble, capable as well as unassuming.
It is easy for us to sit back and let others be brave, but this doesn’t help us to achieve our potential in our careers or in our personal lives either.
Learning to love ourselves is about recognizing who we are, what we believe, what our strengths and talents are, and celebrating these things about ourselves.
We always feel we have to measure up to something or someone’s idea of perfection.
Really, we ought to be only concerned with pleasing ourselves, but in our society today it is harder than ever to ignore what various media tell us we should aim for, and that anything less than that is not okay.
When I was growing up, television advertisements and ads in magazines provided the image that we ‘should’ be trying to attain.
As a teenager, I didn’t know that these photos of models in my favorite mags were touched up.
However, I did recognize that they were attractive and that’s what I wanted to look like. Well, that really wasn’t possible given that when I looked in the mirror I saw a true, untouched image unlike the ones in the magazines.
Yet, because I didn’t know this secret, I was unhappy with myself. I saw myself as less than the image of perfection presented to me.
And so it began, my lifelong struggle to accept myself for who I am with all of my seeming imperfections.
In our society today it’s even worse. What has made it so? The advent of social media.
Every day, twenty-four hours a day, we are bombarded with messaging that we are not good enough.
Young people today are constantly on their cell phones, iPads, or laptops. They are inundated with images of people who look fabulous.
You could say they look too good to be true, and that’s because it isn’t true.
Advertising on social media is as bad or worse than it was when I was watching TV ads. The ability, by anyone, to manipulate a photo means that virtually nothing can be trusted to be the real deal.
People today, both young and old, constantly feel like they are not good enough, they do not measure up to those they see online, and they feel they can never attain this model of perfection.
It is not only in the area of looks that we get a constant onslaught of ‘perfect’ images.
We are also made to feel deficient in our lifestyle compared to all of the people posting about their fabulous vacations and exciting adventures.
We are left feeling like the quality of our life is crappy. We feel unhappy and as though we are lacking the ability, the smarts, and the talent to live the kind of life that others are living.
It is easy to feel inadequate and to become overcome with feelings of deficiency which lead to sadness and depression.
Depression is at an all-time high, particularly among youth. The average teen and young adult spend an inordinate number of daily hours on social media.
They fear missing something that could put them at a disadvantage among their peers. Due to FOMO, or ‘fear of missing out’, people leave their phones on all night.
Consequently, their sleep is affected which makes it harder for them to deal with the challenges of the next day.
On and on it goes and the result is a mental health crisis with anxiety and depression topping the list.
How do we combat this?
How do we learn to accept ourselves for who we are and start loving ourselves?
In the list below you will find 31 days of self-love messages. We present it to you as a challenge.
The challenge is to look at one of these messages each day, ponder it in the light of your life, and think about how worthy of loving yourself you are.
These ideas are enough for one per day in any given month of the year, but you can jump in any time, and if you miss a day, just pick up from where you left off the next time you’re able to squeeze in the time.
I encourage you to make it a priority because what could be more important than self-love?
31 Days Of Self-Love Challenge
1. “Make A List Of Your Short-Term And Long-Term Goals”
2. “Evaluate Your Morning Routine”
3. “Nourish Yourself”
4. “Learn To Become Your Best Friend”
5. “Letting Go Of Negative Thoughts”
6. “Try Mindfulness Meditation”
7. “Write A Positive Note To Yourself On Your Mirror”
8. “How’s Your Support System?”
9. “Spend A Day Off Of Social Media”
10. “Go Phoneless For All Three Meals”
11. “Get To Know You”
12. “Keep A Journal Of What You Eat For The Day”
13. “Say No To Something That Doesn’t Make You Happy”
14. “Unplug And Unwind”
15. “What Would You Be Amazed Of Now?”
16. “Do Something For Others”
17. “Write Yourself A Letter To Read In The Future”
18. “Buy Yourself Something That You Love”
19. “Hit “Refresh””
20. “Spend Some Time With The People That You Love”
21. “Schedule Playtime”
22. “Do Something That Makes You Laugh Out Loud”
23. “List 10 Things You Are Grateful For In Your Life”
24. “Organize Your Workspace”
25. “Take Yourself Out For A Spa Day”
26. “Do Something That You Are Good At And Really Enjoy Doing”
27. “Give Yourself 5 Compliments Throughout The Day And Write Them Down”
28. “Write Down What You Are Proud Of. “
29. “Plan For A Brighter Tomorrow”
30. “Accept Your Own Self”
31. “Treat Yourself To Your Favorite Dessert”
Frequently Asked Questions
What Are Some Examples Of Activities In The Self-Love Challenge?
Activities in the Self-Love Challenge may include daily affirmations, journaling exercises, mindfulness practices, acts of self-care, and engaging in activities that bring joy. Each activity is designed to contribute to a positive and nurturing relationship with oneself.
How Long Does The Self-Love Challenge Last?
The duration of the Self-Love Challenge can vary, but it is often structured as a 30-day challenge. Participants commit to incorporating self-love practices into their daily lives for the specified period to experience positive shifts in mindset and well-being.
Can The Self-Love Challenge Benefit Mental Health?
Yes, the Self-Love Challenge can benefit mental health by promoting positive self-talk, reducing stress, and fostering a more compassionate relationship with oneself. Engaging in activities that prioritize mental well-being contributes to a healthier and more resilient mindset.
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