I'm passionate about the topic of Self-Love.
Learning about Self-Love has changed everything: my relationship, my health, how I treat others, how I treat myself, and how I make choices.
I've come to understand that the most important thing in my life is to cultivate Love from within - to practice the Art of Self-Love.
But it hasn't always been that way.
6 years ago, if you tell me: “Hey Milena, I think you need to learn more about self-love!” I’d get annoyed.
I'd say: "What’s your problem? Of course, I love myself! Everyone likes me, I've just won an award. I'll soon be the next president in my organization. I even have a boyfriend!" - All of which had nothing to do with self-love.
If you tell a fish to notice the water, it'd say: "Which water?"
Like that fish, I was so buried in self-hatred that I wasn’t aware of how badly did I treat myself
I was a woman in my early 20s wanting nothing more than to prove herself. I got things done. I got busy. I volunteered. I had a boyfriend. I hustled for the next recognition, the next award, the next promotion. I was trapped in an endless loop of pleasing, performing, perfecting - the kind of downward spiral that comes with a cost.
It happened slowly, and then all at once. Suddenly, in the midst of it all, I caught myself driving home at 10:30 PM in the cold. My back hurt, my head ached, my nose was running because I had another flu. My stomach was screaming because I didn't have dinner. And in my heart, I felt nothing but a dull emptiness. It was gonna be another night of crying to sleep. I had just broken up with my ex, again, for the 3rd time.
When I arrived home, the house was dark. I had dinner without feeling any taste in my mouth. I pushed open the door of my room, dropped my heavy bag on the floor, sat on my bed. I cried.
I was broken. Physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually. Now, in introspective, it's understandable. I didn't give a damn about myself. But back in the time, I didn't know.
I didn't know that I didn't love myself.
6 years ago, had Fairy Godmother appeared and told me: "My dear, here's your problem: you don't love yourself." I would have known what to work on and saved years of being trapped in that desperate loop.
That's why I wrote this article. To help you start your self-love journey, which will help you can transform and thrive in all aspects of your life.
Here are the 13 sure signs that you’re urgently in need of self-love:
You’re not taking care of your body. You’re not sleeping enough. You can’t remember the last time you exercise. Frequently skipping meals, or eating stuff you know isn’t good for you (processed food, fast food, unbalanced meals).
- You're not taking care of your mind. You’re constantly in stressed out, anxious, exhausted. With no breaks, and recreation time for you to recharge.
- You always worry about what other people think. This makes you do things that aren’t authentic to you, just to protect your images, please others, or avoid conflict.
- You say Yes when what you want to say No.
- You don’t feel confident - feeling small and say “I don’t belong here.”
- You're afraid of being found out to be a fraud: you’re not as good as they think you are.
- You feel that you don’t deserve what you have. when something good happens, or when an opportunity shows up, you self-sabotage.
- You're not open to receive in a relationship. Kind behaviors of your partner make you uneasy. You are afraid that he/she may love you too much.
- You constantly experience emotional disturbances: sadness, anger, desperation, helplessness, depression, anxiety...
- You blame, shame, and guilt yourself. You say to yourself “How can I be so stupid?” after making a mistake.
- You’re putting up with a disrespectful, even abusive relationship - whether verbal or physical abuse. You justify for their bad behaviors: “He’s the love of my life.” “He’s just having a tough time right now.” “He just doesn’t know how to express his love.” Or “It’s going to get better. He promised so.”
- You hold a grudge, unable to let go of the past and forgive, including forgiving yourself.
- You’re not taking your aspirations, your wishes, and your dreams seriously. Maybe you’re even working hard to make others’ dreams happen, instead of yours.
Did you see yourself in any sign above?
For me, I know I used to have all of those signs. I didn’t write this list down from imagination but from my own experience.
"Now what?" You may ask me "I know that I don't love myself. What should I do next?"
Let's take the first step
It is: to be aware of your own thoughts, feelings, and actions. I invite you to observe yourself in the next 3 days. Notice when any self-hate sign comes out. And begin to ask questions:
- Why do I put up with this unhealthy relationship?
- Why don’t I eat better while I know that healthy food will make me feel better?
- Why do I say Yes to go to this party while all I want is to be on the bed in my pajamas with a book?
Get curious about yourself. Change always starts with self-awareness. So start with that.
I’d love to know: Which of the signs above do you see in yourself right now? What's the 1 sign you want to take actions to change the most, and why? Reply in the comment below.
With all my love,