It’s past midnight and as I’m trying to filter my thoughts and go through my day before I shut my eyes for the night. sifting through the files in my head something reminded me the year had less than ten days to go and I felt, “so? I know”. And then the same voice asked, “how come you haven’t done that thing you wanted to do? You’ve been going about from one event to another, working your ass off but you haven’t done this for YOU”.
For me? “Yes”, I responded to myself. “Do you even love yourself enough?” Now that thought made me angry at the truth right in front of me that maybe… just maybe I don’t love myself as much as I should because I haven’t done that one thing I told myself I was going to do and that’s how I started thinking about self-love.
We hear the word “self-love” enough in trying to get by this thing called life. We are encouraged to love ourselves and that often involves taking yourself out to fancy places, buying fancy stuff for yourself, spoiling yourself the way someone would spoil you and treating yourself to all the good things of life especially if you’re a woman. (Come to think of it, what do men do to spoil themselves, I truly want to know) That’s the self-love we’ve been taught but the self-love I found out about today, being the 22nd of December and also my friend, Teniola’s wedding in a bit, LOL. The kind of love I realize we should have for ourselves is the kind of love that anybody cannot give to you, that’s what I believe it is to truly love yourself. Coming through for yourself on those things you know are important to you, your growth, your physical and your mental health.
Telling myself that I didn’t love myself enough because I haven’t done what I planned to do is because I realize I’ll be angry with myself for not doing what I planned and because I love my mental space and I don’t want to have to be at war with my own self, I should give myself that piece of mind by actually doing that which my mind needs by achieving those little or big goals.
Now this feeling of not loving myself enough is present even with the realization that I do love myself but it came out because I didn’t see what I need for myself as important enough as I see what I need for my work where I being paid salary,(what can this baby gyal do?).
When we make self-love look like just spoiling yourself because you have no man or woman, we defeat the purpose of the idea of self-love because I don’t think doing things like that because there’s no one there to do it will make you happy. But the question you should ask yourself is, does spoiling yourself truly help you? Does it make you happy or does it bring you face to face to the reality of your loneliness or single life? I feel it’ll do the later because you’re telling yourself you need those activities and traditions to feel good and be happy and that my dear is confining because you don’t and ultimately, you’re messing up your mind by believing what you shouldn’t.
Self-love comes with knowing yourself and understanding what you like and don’t like about you and looking for a solution that is healthy for you to resolve what you’re going through. Self-love is you eating right because you know you love yourself so much you don’t want to be the reason you break down.
Self-love is changing your boxers every day not because you have a girl that’ll see them, but because you love yourself so much you want to always feel fresh when you rock a fresh boxer.
Self-love is brushing twice a day, not because you’re not tired, but because you want to wake up and not be irritated by your own breath; yea sometimes we forget and doze but the times we remember, let’s treat ourselves to such healthy luxury.
Self-love is reading enough to build your brain muscle because you want to be proud of what comes out of your mouth when you open it and you want to be confident when you tell people you are and you’re doing it not because of the thumbs up you’ll receive from people, but because how the feeling of learning will make you feel… I don’t know about you but it makes me feel good.
Self-love is coming back home tired but still hitting the shower because you know your body deserves it after the long day. Self-love is all these little things and more but not just the jacuzzi bath and taking yourself out.
I personally have issues with the idea of people trying to prove something like taking themselves out, buying ourselves expensive gifts because we don’t have a partner and I’m sorry to say this but as ladies, we’re usually on this table, Then we do it and talk about how we took ourselves out and how we bought things for ourselves like we’re trying to score some point. Let’s stop. That’s not all that self-love is about, that’s the way to live this thing called life especially as an adult; you buy things and take yourself out once in a while but don’t let it look like you’re trying to prove something, don’t even feel that way and if you do, which we sometimes do, purge yourself of such notion.
You should take yourself out even if you have a partner or not just as you should buy yourself stuff if you have a partner or not. What your partner is buying for you should have nothing to do with what you have to buy for yourself, but that’s a conversation for another day. And who says everything you buy for yourself shows you love yourself? We sometimes buy expensive stuff for ourselves that are obviously harmless and against our lives, growth and success as humans.
Self-love is doing those little things that make it look like you’re too into yourself but you’re just trying to give yourself the best life you can, as affordable as you can afford.
Self-love is treating your hair nice when it’s time to. It’s opting for the better product, not because you have all the money to spend, but because you know your body deserves more than the available alternative.
Self-love is eating as at when due so as not to starve yourself but also not eating too much so as not to make yourself sick. (I am balancing on this table because of my recent terrible eating habits and I think it’s high time I look for a healthier table to occupy and I know I’m not alone).
Self-love is coming through for yourself and the goals you’ve set because if you can promise someone else and come through for them, why can’t you for yourself? Why disregard the words you give to yourself because you know or you feel your disappointment towards yourself doesn’t mean as much as others will. Well, I think we should start changing that #NoteToSelf.
Self-love is treating yourself to a good pedicure or spa treatment because you want your body to look like it truly is at least once in a while, let your body say thank you to you.
Self-love is what you do that makes you feel good, makes your mind feel good, makes the entirety of who you are feel really good. In most cases, it comes in form of decision that requires action. Like telling yourself you want to do something for yourself and actually going ahead to getting it done, that’s not just self-love, it’s also self-respect.
Self-love is NOT doing what you think people should do for you, that might just be societal expectations talking and deciding for you, but definitely not because you love yourself. Doing things because society expects you to takes a lot of thinking before and after the action that might not be good for your mental health, so how then do you love yourself if you don’t think to protect your mental space from society?
If you love to go out, do it even though you’re in a relationship. Don’t start doing it when you break up with your partner and you don’t want your partner to think you’re not having a good time with life after them, that stress is not just worth it. If you enjoy fine dining, by all means, enjoy it even in a relationship, don’t wait till you break up and you start disturbing people’s timeline with yourself alone in a restaurant with delicious looking food and hashtagging self-love… that hashtag is for attention and you know it and the fact that you’re feeding that need, it shows you don’t love yourself enough… I’m sorry, but I think that needs to be said to you just as I needed to say it to me.
From all I’ve said, you’ll realize we really don’t need so much wealth to love ourselves and although I know I didn’t mention all the self-love activities that’s because I don’t know all, so you can share some of the things you do to show love to yourself and of course I’d love to know and learn more but most importantly, I’d like us all to practice genuine love for ourselves more than we already do.