Self-love is important. Its presence or lack of presence in our lives affects everything—from our health to our choice of work and mate. Armed with self-love, we feel braver, and we're less likely to act in self-sabotaging ways or to audition for the love and attention of others. Rather, we expect to be happy, to live fulfilled lives with people who care about us.
That said, self-love is often the hardest love of all. We know ourselves well, and it's all too easy to focus on our perceived flaws and failures. While it would be wonderful if our inner voice were a cheerleader, urging us on to ever-greater heights, many of us spend our days listening instead to our inner critic—a voice whose superpower is finding new, inventive ways to tell us how insufficient we are.
The good news is that you can change that by making self-love a practice. While the idea of self-love may seem big and nebulous, the practice of it can be exactly the opposite. You can start a self-love practice today that's fun, concrete, and easily incorporated into your daily routine, with actions that engage you creatively and stir your imagination. From that place of playful expectation, evolution is not only possible, it's inevitable.
Here are five examples of simple yet powerful activities you might include in a self-love practice.