We can all agree that being a teenager in our current society is tough. Social media constantly portrays a toxic image of what’s considered “beautiful.” Relationships (including friendships) are often temporary or changing. They can be for a reason, a season, or a lifetime. Grades are ever present in the back of our minds; you have to stay on top of them, regardless of what you’re going through mentally or emotionally. It can be tough to balance between school, after school activities, home life, and work. It can also be stressful to keep up with new trends so people don’t criticize your look. Overall bullying is a major issue that many teens have to deal with. The list could go on forever. But the toughest issues of them all is self-love.
What exactly is self love, you ask? Wikipedia’s definition of “self-love” is “regard for one’s own well-being and happiness.” We all tend to put ourselves aside for others, criticize ourselves, get caught up in lives that aren’t our own, or stress about what we don’t have. Guess what though? You’re not the only one. We’re ALL on a journey trying to find ourselves, including myself.
Why is self love important?
According to upjourney.com, Sandy Fowler, cofounder of DASIUM and Mighty Parenting, stated “Self-love isn’t just important it’s essential.” Melissa Okabe, a yoga instructor, believes that “Self-love provides a space for introspection and self reflection.” It helps you set boundaries in relationships and for yourself, as well as helping you build character, value, and it teaches you to know your worth. Practicing self love also trains you to have overall acceptance of your mind, body, soul, and appearance.
Ways for teens to practice self love
Now that you know some of the benefits, here’s a list of ways you and teens around the world can practice self-love.
- Forgive yourself and others
- Be patient, self love does not come overnight
- Take care of your body
- Get rid of all the negativity from your life – Ex. toxic friends
- Do things that you truly enjoy
- Spend time with nature
- Take time alone to self reflect and relax
- Express your feelings to a journal or a very trusted person
- Tap into your hobbies
- Listen to your intuition
- Do things to make you feel beautiful – Ex. Treating yourself to a spa day or a new outfit
Self-love is a huge process, but in the end, it’s worth it. Don’t forget that you’re amazing!