Yesterday, we squared away your starting point in the post You Are Worth the Effort, but I bet some of you were reading that post wondering to yourself – yeah yeah but what do I do now? Well, now, you stack the deck in your favor. You gather your resources, your inspiration points, your support system, both online and off.
In order to be successful in learning how to love yourself – you need help. You will be the most successful and the least isolated if you find a way to surround yourself with allies and role models. Understandably, not everyone has access to people like this in their daily life, but, luckily, enormously gorgeous online support networks are being built stronger every single day. Spend an afternoon checking out some blogs, twitter accounts or facebook pages. Fill up your google reader with inspiring sites. [If you don't know what a google reader is - hit us up in the comments and we'll help you out.]
I encourage you to think about those people who inspire you, those people who are living lives that you are scared to even wish for yourself. Fill up a gigantic piece of paper with adventures/attributes/circumstances/fashion/love – whatever you can think of that you want to manifest into your life. Do not censor yourself. You don’t need to show this to anyone, it is just a starting off point. The purpose of this exercise is to illustrate for you just how lovely your life could possibly be.
Before you move on any further, I truly recommend that in the interest of treating yourself sweetly, you take a second to create yourself an emotional safety plan. Sometimes, when you set out to conquer your fears and feelings of inadequacy head on, past hurts, shame, and emotions come up that you’d tucked away somewhere deep. Unfortunately, we don’t get to a place of hating our bodies overnight or without reason.
The very first step in learning how to love yourself, for real and for good, is to make the decision to treat yourself with relentless compassion. There will be days when you can’t pull yourself up and when you find yourself speaking negatively about your body. Treat yourself sweetly, reach out to your allies, reach out to me, and know that you’re doing good work.
Additional Reading for Self-Love Beginners:
- What Loving Your Body Really Mean + Why It Probably Won’t Kill You
- The Marzipan Manifesto
- Learning to Love Yourself, Even When You Feel Awful