- Mental Health»
How to love yourself
When was the last time you looked in the mirror and saw something you liked? Or when was the last time you woke up and felt happy because you were you? There isn't a day that passes by that we don’t see or meet someone who, in our perspective, is better than we are. And we see them and wonder what makes them so perfect and accomplished. We turn around and find someone more handsome or beautiful than we are, and here we are feeling sorry for ourselves, for not being as good as all these people.
Learn About ANT’s
Yes, it’s a sad world we live in. And our thoughts are not making it better. I like the way Dr. Amen describes these negative thoughts. He refers to them as ANT’s (Automatic Negative Thoughts). Once we have formed a negative perspective about ourselves, every thing new we encounter is filtered through that perspective, thus giving birth to these horrifying ANT’s that have the capacity to kill our spirit, our minds, and everything else we hold valuable. To feel proud of ourselves, Dr. Amen proposes that we act as true scientists, questioning all accepted knowledge. In this case, we need to learn to question those ANT’s. Is it really true that there isn’t anything special about us? Are we really worse than everyone?
Once you question these negative thoughts, you will find that they’re simply not true. However, I propose that we do more than questioning. I propose we move to action. For example, think hard about how you feel and where these ANT’s are coming from. What is it that makes you feel inferior? What is it that makes you feel like you have nothing to be proud of? Once you determine the root of your negative thoughts, fight it. Do everything possible to prove to yourself that you can do better than what you are doing. Do you have a hobby you are really good at? Go for it! Do you have a special quality that stands out from everyone else’s? Put it to use! Don’t let depression throw you in bed. Get up and prove to yourself you can be what you want to be, and show the world that you have many things to be proud of.
Stop Watching TV
TV is full of false people. False, perfect people. If we make the mistake of comparing ourselves to what we see, we will be victims of depression. In their effort to sell as much as possible, TV will tell us that we need to be like so and so to feel good about ourselves. It will tell us that we need to buy this and that product to be happy. It will tell us that we are not good enough. The more TV you watch the more chances you have of being unhappy with what you have. Turn off that TV and learn to love yourself!
Stop Reading Model Magazines
The same concept that applies to TV applies to these types of magazines. They, too, are full of false, perfect people. All those models, whether male or female, with their perfect bodies and complexion, never fail to make us feel bad about ourselves. By this time, I’m sure you know those pictures are completely fixed, and the original photo, the one with the real human in it, has been mutilated to give birth to the model you see on the magazines. The strange thing is that, even though we know those pictures are fake, our subconscious mind probably won’t detect it, and subconsciously, we will continue to feel bad about ourselves. Feel proud and throw those magazines away!
Stop Comparing Yourself
This is probably one of the hardest things to do. Our minds go to comparison mode automatically. But fight it! Remember that when you compare yourself to someone else, you are comparing your inside to their outside. Nothing good ever comes from these comparisons. I will, however, dare you to compare yourself to yourself some years ago. That is the only way we can truly measure improvement. How were you doing a few years ago? Have you improved in any aspect of your life? Have you learned more about life?
Don’t Let Your Happiness Depend on Others
There will always be someone who tells you you’re not good enough. Or someone who tells you you’re fat, or ugly, or anything else just to make you feel bad. It is an inevitable fact of life that you will have to deal with this kind of people at one point or another. Don’t let your happiness depend on what any one tells you. And most importantly, don’t let their words affect your self-esteem. If they’re talking trash about you, they have their own issues to work out. It’s their problem, don’t make it yours.
Choose the Right Friends
Surround yourself with the right people. Anyone who makes you feel bad about yourself cannot possibly be your friend. Befriend people whose qualities you admire, and who make you feel good and proud about who you are. Befriend those who will help you love yourself.
Take Interest in Others
Helping others is a good step to learning to love yourself. Take interest in the young and in the elderly. Make yourself available to listen to their problems. They will surely appreciate it, and you will feel good about helping a fellow human, thus taking you another step in the ladder of feeling proud and loving who you are.
You must take action to learn to love yourself. The feeling won’t come out of nowhere. You must change your negative thoughts; change any activities that are making you feel any less of who you are, and make a change of friends if necessary. Even though it may seem like a hard and difficult journey, it is a worth one to take.