So often we associate guilt with taking care of ourselves and putting how we feel first over the needs of others. We don’t prioritize our own health, self or interests and eventually find ourselves feeling lacking, low in energy, frumpy, anxious and low in self-confidence in life. How can you fill your own cup to over-flowing in the briefest of moments in your day? It’s time to start feeling good about yourself and your needs.
Can I ask you now to drop the feelings of guilt and any other excuses you may hold about why you shouldn’t and couldn’t put your needs and feelings first, and to step into your full self? Your full potential.
Start feeling good about yourself, regardless of the demands or pressures in your life by incorporating these simple steps below into your day.
1. Raise Your Standards For Yourself
Sometimes the littlest of things can make the hugest of differences in how we feel about ourselves. In all areas of your life take a few extra minutes and pay attention to the small details. Get dressed and consider what you are going to wear today rather than wearing the same old thing, put on a little make-up, style your hair, eat well, take more care in the tasks that you do, make your space where you spend most of your time –home, office or otherwise, inviting and a true reflection of who you are.
2. Love Yourself More
Developing a true relationship with yourself is at the core of having great relationships with others (as well as yourself). Self-love is a muscle and it grows through practice.
Everybody has insecure thoughts at times. Not entertaining these thoughts is a skill that can be learned.
It’s a choice you have – to either focus on your self-doubt and how you’re “lacking” or instead invest in your irresistibility and value.
Most of our thoughts about ourselves are not true anyway. No thought has a meaning other than the meaning you give it so don’t take your thoughts too seriously or personally. When negative thoughts show up, instead try saying “thanks for sharing”, acknowledge them, but then return your thoughts and focus to the present.
3. Spend Your Time With People Who Bring Out The Best In You
Relationships and friendships are a chance for you to share your enthusiasm for being alive and an opportunity to give yourself to another in a positive way. If it’s not being reciprocated in the way you would like (or need) then perhaps it’s not worth your energy.
Life is short so choose your ‘ships wisely and be unapologetic about your choices because they will directly influence how you feel about yourself and the choices you do or don’t make.
We all know about it. Daily exercise is the best mood shifter and its effects last longer than the walk, the workout or the pilates class. It’s not about your pants size, but moving often makes you feel better and more energetic. So why shouldn’t we be doing more of it? Whether it’s a short run outside, walking rather than driving the car, or a dedicated workout or exercise class make it a goal to move and sweat a little (or a lot!) in some form or another, every day. To up the anti, exercise outdoors. It will lift your spirits even further.
5. Get Organized. Freedom & Play Need A Schedule
If life is busy and you are juggling many things and many people all at once then it’s important that you also find time for yourself and for what you enjoy doing. Having occasional “you” time keeps you fully charged, and with so many other competing demands sometimes you have to make an appointment with yourself and commit to keeping it.
Whether it’s going for a walk on your own, taking an evening dance class, catching up for girlfriends for dinner or going to the gym, put it in your diary alongside all your other “must do’s”. Having your own life and maintaining your own interests is a natural way to keep yourself centered, allowing you to have more energy to be at your best for others. Even if it is only for an hour once a week, book “you time” into your diary.
6. Embrace Your Unique Qualities
There is nothing wrong with who you authentically are. In fact, the more willing you are to just be yourself, the better you will feel. Sadly, many people are so busy trying to fit into the image of others that they no longer recognize what is special about themselves.
Be authentic and embrace who you are and what you love. Whether that’s reflected in the values you live by, in your clothing, the language you use, the books you read. If it’s not true to you don’t go there. Rather than suppressing your unique qualities embrace them.
7. Engage With Others Everywhere You Go
The secret to start feeling good about yourself is to act like you already feel great and energized. It’s your attitude that matters the most here. Rather than focus internally, shift your attention and start connecting and reaching out to others in your environment, just for fun. Simply start relating to people instead of being wound up in your own thoughts and to do lists. You might feel awkward and shy at first, particularly if it’s not your usual way of interacting with others but stick with it.
Begin by bringing your total presence to whoever it is that you are speaking to and redirect your irresistible energy out into the world. Be engaged in all of your encounters, including your casual encounters. Smile. Use eye contact. Ultimately, as a woman, you are more than the sum of your daily obligations and duties. Quiet that voice within you that says you are being self-indulgent by prioritizing your own feelings above the needs of others at times.
Instead, let how you live your life be an example to those around you on how to live well, feel happy and confident in yourself, be socially active, vibrant and healthy.