You can learn how to have a loving relationship by learning to love yourself first. This sounds selfish but it is true. You have to love and respect yourself first before you can do the same for your partner. Many relationships fail not just because of lack of understanding of the other party but also lack of understanding and love for oneself. Lack of self awareness and self-love can be detrimental to any person as well as the relationships he/she is in. Here are some tips on how to learn to love yourself.
- Set aside some time for healthy introspection. You have to come face to face with yourself.
- Take a hard look at your physical traits. The way you view your body is integral to loving yourself. Eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia are related to one’s body image perception. As yourself: what parts of your body do you love most about yourself? What parts do you dislike most?
In general, are you happy with the way you look? If your answer to the last question is no, and you keep comparing yourself to present-day images of beauty to the extent that you have taken actions that is harmful to your body, then you may not be loving yourself enough. Look positively on your best physical assets and accept your flaws with grace, and not self-hate or disgust.
- Take a hard look at your personal dealings and relationships with others. Ask yourself if you are surrounded by people who provide you with positive reinforcement and generally make you feel good about yourself. If your answer is no or if you find that there are persons or relationships that make you feel unhappy with yourself, then you must make a conscious effort steer clear of people and relationships that are destructive to yourself worth and self esteem.
- Treat yourself right. Get that vacation, and take time to de-stress from work. Nourish yourself and take care of your body. These are just some of the simplest ways to love yourself more.
- Engage in positive self talk. You might be your own worst critic. Mentally, you could be saying, “I’m so stupid” or “I’m ugly.” Catch yourself before engaging in more negative self talk before it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Rephrase the negative criticism into constructive criticism. Instead of saying “I’m stupid,” acknowledge the mistake that you made and make a promise to improve on it.
- Use positive affirmations. You might be psyching yourself to commit even more failure. You might find yourself saying things aloud or unconsciously, things like “I will never find a loving partner/boyfriend” or “I will never get that promotion because...” Rephrase these thoughts by saying, for instance, “I deserve a loving partner and I will find him” or “I will get that promotion because I work hard.” Be your own best friend, and let your thoughts and actions reflect it.