One of the biggest challenges in life is accepting yourself. As hard as it is, learning to accept yourself is probably the most important thing you have to do to be happy. No matter what challenges you have faced in life, you have the opportunity to accept yourself and learn to like yourself.
Part 1 of 3: Learn to Love Yourself
Step 1. Be a friend to yourself
Often we expect more from ourselves than from others. Try to treat yourself the same way you would treat your closest friend. Don't tell yourself (either out loud or inwardly) things you wouldn't say to someone you care about.
Step 2. Be proud of your strengths
Researchers have proven that focusing on cultivating and rewarding our strengths will increase our chances of leading a more fulfilling life.
- List your three strengths. You can write down your strengths specifically (like, "I'm good at chess") or generally (like, "I'm brave").
- Include at least one specific advantage and one general advantage on your list.
- Take the time to appreciate these advantages. Say out loud, "I like myself because I'm brave."
- Think of ways to enhance each advantage. If you write, "I'm good at chess," consider entering a chess tournament. If you write, “I'm brave,” you might be able to go white water rafting.
Step 3. Forgive yourself
If you can't accept yourself, you may still have pent-up guilt. Forgiving yourself is not easy, but it can change your life. To try to forgive yourself, perform a guilt-releasing ritual.
- Write a letter containing your secret. Describe all the things that make you feel guilty in detail.
- Destroy the letter. Throw it into the sea or burn the letter.
- Say to yourself, "I'll let my guilt go."
- Repeat this ritual as many times as you need.
Step 4. Be kind to yourself
Many people convince themselves that taking care of themselves is selfish. In fact, being kind to yourself is one of the most responsible actions you can take. As you take better care of yourself, you will begin to feel that you deserve that kind of treatment. As a result, you will soon accept yourself. Here are some ideas available:
- Set a specific time to rest. Allow yourself to relax at such times.
- Exercise. Pump your endorphins! Once you're at the gym, thank yourself for getting there successfully.
- Get enough sleep. Don't sacrifice basic human needs. Adequate sleep will help you to be physically and emotionally fit.
Step 5. Make an affirmation
Affirmations are simple and meaningful statements about yourself. Imagine a statement and use an erasable marker to write it on the sink mirror. Say this statement out loud when you wake up and again every time you look in the mirror. It's okay if you feel silly at first! That silly feeling will pass and over time, it will help you to accept yourself. Some examples of affirmations include:
- I'm a great writer.
- I'm tough.
- I love you, …. (fill in your name).
Part 2 of 3: Finding Yourself
Step 1. Find your uniqueness
Uniqueness makes a person memorable, attractive, and confident. Begin your journey to self-acceptance by making a list of the things you love. Don't let other people's opinions influence you.
- What genre of music do you like?
- What kind of dishes do you enjoy?
- What color do you like?
- What stylish clothes do you like?
Step 2. Develop your own style
In order to accept yourself, you must accept and cultivate a sense of "being yourself." Look at the list of hobbies that you have created and apply the things on the list.
- Wear clothes like you see in magazines.
- Download songs from singers you like.
- Order food from restaurants you like.
- Try to do something that is unique to you at least once a day.
Step 3. Expand your horizons
Chances are, you're only exposed to a small part of what life has to offer you! Expand your passions by finding new things to enjoy and new ways to express yourself.
- Travel to new places.
- Try a style, dish, or music you've never tried.
- Try to do something new once a week.
Step 4. Express yourself
Expressing your creative side will bring you closer to yourself. Finding a place to express your unique inner self will help you to connect with yourself and others, heal old wounds, or just have fun. The only person you should amaze is yourself! Over time, this container of creativity will help you accept yourself.
- Write a journal.
- Go dance.
- Make a collage.
- Do this once or twice a week.
Step 5. Pay attention to your core values
Take some time and make a list of your five main values. Do you believe in integrity or honesty? Is it straightforwardness or kindness? Is it courage or style? By forging your core values, you'll better understand what you need to accept yourself, as well as what you need from a friend.
Part 3 of 3: Opening Up to Others
Step 1. Pay attention to the people around you
If the people around you are negative and judgmental, you will have a hard time accepting yourself. Find people who support you. Look for people who accept themselves. Minimize spending time with people who are always complaining or sparking unimportant drama.
Step 2. Build a support network
Building a network of people who support you is important in order to accept yourself. Support networks can be formal, such as a therapist-led support group, or informal, such as a group of friends. By empathizing with others, you can also increase your ability to empathize with yourself.
- Attend meetings or plan gatherings where your friends can gather and receive support.
- Do that at least once a month.
Step 3. Be kind to others
Researchers have proven that when we do good to others, we not only become happier, but also live longer! Doing good to others makes you accept yourself. Strive to be kind to others selflessly, and you will soon accept yourself better.
- Compliment the cashier on the jacket.
- Give up your seat on the bus.
- Volunteer to help the poor.
- Good deeds can be small or large.
Step 4. Be grateful
Whenever you start to doubt yourself, take your mind off it and focus on being grateful. Make a list of five things you are grateful for right now. Take the time to look at each item on the list. How do you feel about having the things on that list?
- Think about a physical trait that you like. Do you have nice hair?
- Think about your personality. Are you smart in school?
- Think of the people in your life. Are you close to mother?
Step 5. Aim for self-acceptance
When we don't accept ourselves, we sometimes don't accept others either. The opposite is also true. If you stop judging other people and try to accept them, you will soon accept yourself. If you notice that you are judging another person's actions, choices, or identities, stop. Remind yourself that it's none of your business.
- Read personal motivation books for additional theoretical background on self-improvement or self-esteem.
- Try to communicate more with the people you meet every day. You will suddenly feel better about yourself, and others will see you as the person you are.
- Buy a notebook! Most of the steps above involve taking notes or writing. Buy a notebook to record your journey towards loving yourself.
- First of all, learn to love yourself! Sometimes it's hard to get other people to love you when you hate your own qualities and qualities.