5 Self-love practices to help boost your confidence


Ready For More Self-Love? Read this.

“The key to happiness is loving yourself first.” We know, we know - you’ve probably heard this cliché a million times before. But as far as cheesy sayings go, this one rings completely true! Now, the real question is: How?!

How to love yourself and be confident? We decided to get to the bottom of it and shed some light on the subject. Hint: It requires practice. And at times, lots of it.

But First: What Does It Mean To Love Yourself?

Loving yourself is understanding your greatest strengths – and greatest limitations – and being at peace with both. Self-love runs much deeper than gifting yourself vacations, cheat days, or that nice coat you’ve been eyeing (although these things can still be important!).

At the heart of it, it’s about owning ALL of who you are. It’s being your own best friend and source of comfort. It’s giving yourself the space to be imperfect. And it’s living from courage instead of small fears that limit your potential.

Self-Love And Confidence: Why Is It So Important?

We can promise you this: Improving your relationship with yourself is the most valuable investment you’ll make in your life. Studies show that when you shower yourself with love and compassion, you benefit from more happiness and a decreased risk of depression.

Positive self-esteem leads to achievements, satisfaction, and resiliency through tougher times like illness and disease. On the flip side, a lack of self-esteem can contribute to mental health problems like anxiety, substance abuse, depression, and other high-risk behaviors. It pushes you towards unhealthy habits in hopes of filling that gaping hole that only true self-love can fill.

How To Develop Self-Love: 5 Practices To Get You Started

Your self-esteem is based on the sum of your beliefs about your personal qualities – including both healthy beliefs based in love and unhealthy ones based in fear. These beliefs are powerful influences that guide your thoughts, behavior, and choices in life.

That’s why a dedicated practice of self-love is so important! It helps you shed the unhealthy beliefs you’ve (often unknowingly) accumulated so you can reunite with the most confident version of yourself.

Keep reading for our top 5 practices to help you gain more self-love.

1. Take pride in your efforts, not your characteristics.

Take a look at these two compliments: 1. You’re an amazing painter! 2. You did an amazing job painting! According to a study in the Netherlands, kids who were praised based on personal qualities (like the first example) were more likely to develop low self-esteem.

On the other hand, compliments based on effort (like the second one), were more likely to contribute to high self-esteem. The reason? Praise based on qualities made the children feel like their value was tied to their success, which led to a feeling of shame when they failed.

We can apply this learning to adults, too: Take pride in your courageous efforts instead of the approval you get from the results. And watch your self-esteem steadily soar!

2. Give yourself permission to make mistakes.

“The most powerful teaching moments are those where you screw up.” -Brene Brown

Recovering perfectionists, this one’s for you! One of the most powerful acts of self-love is giving yourself the space to mess it all up. To explore a new career, hobby, or project without the added pressure of doing it perfectly.

When you let yourself make mistakes, you stop with the unattainable expectations that make you feel like you’re never enough. Plus, more breathing room will give you the courage to take risks, grow, and achieve more success than was ever possible under mounting, self-applied pressure. In our books, that’s the ultimate form of self-love!

3. Learn to say no when it’s not right for you.

Hands up if you have a hard time saying ‘no.’ We feel you! Often, we say ‘yes’ because we don’t want to let others down, we feel we owe it to them, or we act from FOMO – even if it means stretching ourselves really thin.

This is a recipe for burnout and the opposite of loving yourself. Instead, honor your energy and spirit by learning to say ‘no’ when it doesn’t serve you. Here are some tips:

  • Ask for some time to respond if you need it. That way, you can first connect with yourself and make the best decision - instead of buckling under pressure.
  • Be candid about the why behind your ‘no.’ People appreciate the straight-up truth.
  • Put yourself first. If you feel like you’re being selfish, you’re not! You’re just being a healthy human.
  • Be direct and firm with your ‘no’ but still kind. You can appreciate the offer and recognize it’s not the right fit for you at the same time.

A self-love practice is about knowing your needs and wants and respecting them at all costs.

4. Relax with an at-home biofeedback device.

Meditation, yoga, and breathwork are all ways to give yourself the love and attention you deserve! These practices become even more powerful when you pair them with an at-home biofeedback device like Reflect.

Reflect’s app tracks your progress, sends you daily reminders so you stay consistent, and gives you a space to journal about your experience. Most importantly, it gives you measurable insights into which practices have the most relaxation impact on your body.

Letting yourself sit in stillness and connect with your inner sense of peace is a practice of self-love that keeps on giving. You’ll feel centered, calm, and capable of taking on anything life throws at you.

5. Celebrate the small things.

Loving yourself means that you don’t need a special reason to celebrate. It’s about carving out time to appreciate even the seemingly small wins. Maybe you were fully present with your loved ones instead of being distracted by a screen.

Or you cooked a healthy meal instead of eating out. Or maybe you woke up early to go to the gym. …These are all wins worth celebrating! The more we take our attention to the tiny wins in our life, the more motivated we are to make great choices that add up to bigger wins over time.

So remember! no need to wait for that big promotion, birthday, or wedding to treat yourself. A practice of self-love is about knowing that the small stuff is just as important as the big stuff. So go ahead and throw yourself a ‘small wins’ party! When we come into this world, we come pre-loaded with an endless supply of self-love.

Although it can be forgotten over the years, a little bit of practice will help you brush off the dust. Follow this guide to reunite with your shining, glowing self in no time!

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Photo of Noga Sapir - Reflect Author, the author
Written by Noga Sapir - Reflect Author

Noga is the founder and CEO of Reflect Innovation. Noga’s work lies in the intersection of technology and design, and how tactility can create unique experiences in the mental health space.

Reflect Innovation was conceived in 2016 when, while completing her degree in Textile Design, Noga developed Reflect, looking to invent solutions for her own struggle with anxiety.

Noga holds a BSc. in Neuroscience from Tel Aviv University and BDes. in Textile Design from Shenkar College of engineering, design, and art.

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