Do you like spending time with yourself? Going on a solo date or watching a movie all by yourself – do these plans sound fun? Do you find yourself adorable in a natural look? If your answer is ‘no’, then darling you are depriving yourself of the most precious care i.e. self-love. Thanks to the advancement of technologies and social media, self-love is now a buzzing popular phrase among zen Z, as it is the most obvious thing that we all are into now. But you are not the only one who finds it confusing to decode the idea of self-love and explore the ways to cultivate it. 

Sometimes the most obvious things get totally overlooked and slips from our priority lists, just because they are so usual. Self-love and self-care are one of them. Depriving yourself from goodness and care is the most dangerous and long-standing abuse one can go through, as the therapists say. So we will dive deeper to uncover the most crucial form of love and the ways to nurture it. Get along with us to find ways to love yourself the way you pour your heart out for others. 

What is Self-Love? 

To be in love with oneself means to appreciate, respect, enjoy and value who you are. It’s all about how you feel about yourself and how you express those feelings. Loving your own self enough reflects significantly in your mental health, mindset, lifestyle and the way you treat people or let them treat you. Not realising your own value is the fruit of a lack of self-love that often ends up offering people license to mistreat you or disrespect your boundaries. 

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However, self-love is not about being overly self-obsessed and self-absorbed, those are the traits of narcissism which leave a negative impact on your overall growth. Loving yourself means knowing where you stand, your strengths and weaknesses and treating yourself with care, standing up for yourself when needed. While the ways of expressing self-love may widely vary from person to person, possessing a high sense of empathy for your own self benefits your social relationships and mental and physical well-being. 

Is Self-love Essential for A Positive Mindset? 

Yes, totally. When you prioritise yourself, you spontaneously take care of the needs of your body and mind, says therapist Nina Polyne. A Plethora of studies have proven that people who have lower self-esteem tend to have a pessimistic mindset. Dealing with an inferiority complex, lack of self-confidence, self-harming tendencies, and desperate urge for validation from people are the symptoms of a lack of self-love. 

With a strong love for yourself, positive elements like mental peace, mindfulness, optimism and a healthy lifestyle follow you. It is crucial to realise that self-love is directly linked with your growth and well-being, both mentally and physically. As the essence of self-love lies in prioritising yourself, and once you take it seriously anything that may affect you negatively will be eliminated from your life automatically. 

Can the Absence of Self-love be Harmful? 

What do you think is why clinical depression and anxiety have become a prominent feature of modern generations? We have been taught to love people and nature since we were kind, but nobody ever told us how to love ourselves. This is also a reason why a large number of people can't be happy in their relationships because they could never love themselves in the first place. As therapists suggest, without loving yourself first, you can not love anyone else. And if you think it’s just about the relationships, it is not. 

Many people struggle with setting their boundaries because of low self-esteem which entitles others to treat them poorly. Not knowing one’s own worth is the reason why one depends upon validations from others. Someone who knows how precious they are, will never even think about doing self-harm. Once you become your own bestie and are at peace with yourself, you won’t even care about the world’s judgements. 

Symptoms of Lack of Love for Yourself.

As strong self-love has such profound positive impacts on your body and mind, lack of self-love, on the contrary, has some significant drawbacks. Here are some strong symptoms that can detect an extremely low level of self-love. 

  • Neglecting personal needs and self-care.
  • Being unable to refuse something. 
  • Engaging in self-harm and self-sabotaging actions. 
  • Low self-esteem and a constant feeling of not being enough. 
  • Seeking reassurance and validations excessively. 
  • Fear of criticism and failure. 
  • Being unable to cut off abusive or toxic relationships. 
  • Constant self-criticism and comparing to others unfavourably.
  •  Facing difficulty in setting and withholding boundaries. 

  • Ways to Cultivate Self-Love. 

    It’s time to forgive yourself for all the times you have been neglected and become harsh on your precious self. It’s never too late to fall in love with yourself. Trust me, self-love is the best present you could have ever gifted to yourself. Here are some ways to cultivate and nurture self-love upon which therapists believe. 


  • Know Yourself.

  • Self-love starts with self-care and it's all about investing in yourself, investing your time, money and empathy. The highly marketed version of the true self-care version that involves scented candles, flowers, bath bombs and "me time" may work for some people and there's nothing wrong with that. But we all find happiness in different things. If you love reading books or gardening or maybe taking a massage, spend some money on those hobbies of yours. You don't need to stress about whether other people find it interesting or not. Knowing what makes you happy and making it a priority can be your form of self-care to start with. 

  • Be Compassionate and Empathetic to Yourself.

  • While most of us are not aware of it, practising negative self-talk is cancerous to our mental and overall growth. You have all the potential to accomplish your goals, but if you keep criticising yourself constantly for your shortcomings, it will demotivate you by making you feel worthless and hopeless. It’s okay to make mistakes or fail at times even after trying your best, nobody is perfect. But you need to treat yourself the same way you would treat your friend after committing the same mistake. The important step towards self-love is being your own friend. The world is hard enough darling, and you are the only one who can offer yourself empathy and peace. 

  • Celebrate Your Small Wins.

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    Celebrate the progress and wins, no matter how inadequate they seem. Stop being harsh on yourself in the course of fulfilling the baggage of expectations society puts on you. It's okay to make small progress at a time and celebrate even the smallest wins that you have achieved. We all have our own pace in life, so stop comparing your achievements in the light of others. Consider setting minor and realistic goals and after achieving each of them, celebrate your victory by giving yourself some treats. These small accomplishments and appreciation will motivate you and boost the momentum to achieve the final goal. 

  • Learn to Say ‘NO’.

  • Knowing when to refuse something that you don’t want or that makes you feel uncomfortable with a firm ‘No’ reflects your self-confidence and self-love. Having no plan for the day is not the same as wanting to make plans for the same, if you don't want it, feel free to refuse that. Whether it's about a party, a friendly invitation to drink or sexual encounters, setting boundaries and ensuring adherence to the same is a crucial form of self-love. 

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    Now you may find refusing any offer or request difficult because you don’t want to be rude to them. Well, you can always explain why you are not in for it, if they really mean a lot but compromising with your will is not worth it. Always choose to protect your needs first before responding to others' wishes, and if there's a conflict between these two, opt for what you really want, not what others want you to do. 

    •  Admire Your Body. 

    Body positivity is a major form of self-love. Many therapists have recognised this common trait among people who lack self love usually unsatisfied with their body and looks, and struggling with an inferiority complex. If you can't admire the person you see every day in the mirror, how will you take care of her? 

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    Your body is unique and it bears the history of your life. Every inch of your body has witnessed your growth throughout all these years. All your curves and scars collectively shape you into the person you were meant to be. Don’t ever think that you are inadequate or any less attractive. Once you start admiring your own charming body, compliments from others will become secondary. 


    Only if you knew, how perfectly wonderful you are you would have poured love out on yourself too, as you do for your close ones. However, it's never too late to start choosing yourself. We hope that you understand by now that without loving yourself achieving long-term goals in future like a fit body, good mental health and a healthy lifestyle is not possible. The key to unlocking your unhindered growth is to prioritise and fall for yourself. It's time to shower some love on your own self that you've been investing in others so far. Just believe in yourself and start taking small steps towards self-love. It's totally worth it.  

    February 28, 2024 — Hunnit