Imagine that you are in a wonderful, loving relationship where you are loved exactly how you want to be.
You get flowers and thoughtful gifts, consistent words of affirmation, and all the hugs and kisses you could ever want.
This person is also always ready to spend quality time with you doing things you enjoy.
They show you that they care.
A love so good that you never have to doubt it.
Now imagine if that lover was…..you! Well, it can be if you take the time to learn how to love yourself better and give yourself all these wonderful things.
In this article, I will tell you how to love yourself better using the principles in The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman.
If you don’t already know, the five love languages are:
- Words of Affirmation
- Acts of Service
- Receiving Gifts
- Quality Time
- Physical touch
How To Determine Your Primary Love Language
According to the Love Languages book, we all have a primary and a secondary love language. Your primary love language is really just your favorite way to receive love.
If you aren’t too sure what your primary language is, you can do these four things to figure it out.
First, think about how you tend to show love to other people. When a friend calls you crying over a break up do you immediately run over to spend time with her?
Do you start telling her how awesome she is and that she deserves better? Or are you more likely to send her a cute gift to cheer her up? Usually (but not always), we tend to give love in the ways we expect to receive it.
If you are one of those people who give love differently than you receive it, then you can try thinking about some of the things you tend to complain that other people don’t do for you.
Are you always telling your boyfriend that he needs to hold your hands more when you guys are out in public? Do you get annoyed when your friends forget to get you a gift for your birthday? These can be signs that you are longing for someone to show you love in those ways.
Another good way to figure out your primary love language is to see where your mind goes when you dream or fantasize.
You might not feel comfortable vocalizing your wants and needs but fantasies don’t lie.
Fantasies give us an idea of our perfect scenario. So what are you doing in your daydreams? Are you a famous supermodel/nobel award-winning scientist that always has people telling you how you are the perfect mix of brains and beauty? Or do you dream of traveling the world and having amazing adventures with your boo?
You can use a combination of these three ways to find your primary love language. But if all else fails, you can take the love language quiz here.
Why You Need To Learn How To Love Yourself
The truth is that we all need love.
I mean, it’s a basic human need.
Unfortunately, a lot of us have gotten comfortable with depending on other people to give us the love we need. From boyfriends and best friends to family and even random strangers on the internet.
While these other relationships are great to have, the most important relationship in your life is the one you have with yourself.
Take some time to think about it now.
Do you constantly talk down to yourself? Tell yourself that you aren’t pretty or smart enough? Do you make choices that you know are bad for your mind and body? Do you end up sabotaging relationships because you feel like you don’t deserve love?
These are all self-defeating behaviors that come from a lack of self-love.
But the good news is that you can actually learn how to love yourself and that will lead to a higher level of confidence, less approval-seeking, increased happiness, and a better relationship with those you care about.
So are you ready? Let’s get into my tips for how to love yourself better using the 5 Love Languages.
Words of Affirmation
If words of affirmation is your primary love language, that means that you prefer for people to tell you how they feel about you. In your case, the right words mean way more to you than actions. To apply this to self-love, you need to really focus on the words you speak to yourself and the thoughts you let into your head. Here are some ideas of ways to show yourself love using words of affirmation:
- Get a journal and write down 5 positive things about yourself every day.
- Write down encouraging and motivating words on sticky notes and leave them all-around your home.
- Start your day with positive affirmations reminding yourself how great you are and how great your day is going to be.
- Whenever you find that you are talking down to yourself, immediately stop and say two nice things to yourself.
- Write an uplifting email to your future self.
If quality time is your primary love language, you value the time you spend with your loved ones more than any gifts or words they can give you. If you are wanting to practice self-love with this love language, quality time does not have to mean time alone. It can also mean spending time with people who make you happy. Here are some tips for you to love yourself better using quality time:
- If you have an interest that your friends and family don’t share, join a club and do it anyways.
- Take a social media break and devote some of that time to self-improvement activities like meditation, reading, or learning a new language.
- Take yourself out to dinner at your favorite restaurant or go to a movie you’ve been dying to see.
- Prioritize yourself when making your plan for the day. Don’t get so caught up in doing things for other people that you neglect yourself. Also set boundaries at work. Turn off your work emails/calls at a certain time.
- Take a day to do absolutely nothing but Netflix and chill. And don’t feel guilty about it.
Acts of Service
If your primary love language is acts of service, you enjoy people showing you love by doing things for you.
And not just anything. Things that make your life better or easier. Without you having to ask them. Doesn’t that sound great?
To apply this to yourself, you can think of it as doing things for your future self. Things you know your future self would be very happy or proud to have accomplished. Here are some ways you can help out your future self:
- Take time to work on yourself and improve parts of yourself that you’ve always wanted to. For example, I’ve created a workbook that helps you better understand yourself, identify your dating patterns, and practice intentional dating. You can get a copy of that here.
- Declutter and organize your space Marie Kondo style. Get rid of anything that doesn’t bring you joy.
- Do a social media cleanse. Unfollow or unfriend anyone who stresses you out, or who constantly puts out content that is not in line with your values.
- Take one day to meal prep healthy meals for the rest of the week.
- Take an afternoon and make these moves to get your finances in order.
I think this love language is pretty self-explanatory. You love to receive gifts. And now after reading this article, you don’t need to wait for anyone else before you get a gift. You can just give them to yourself!
Here are some ideas for some gifts you can give yourself:
- Invest in yourself. Take that class, attend a networking conference, or sign up for therapy.
- Sign up for a subscription box that fits with your interests. That way, you are giving yourself a little gift to look forward to each month.
- Pick a really fun item on your bucket list and start saving towards it.
- Book a hotel in your city and take a staycation.
- Outsource the chore you hate the most for one month.
If your primary love language is physical touch, that means that you receive love best through physical contact. You need to literally feel love.
You are probably wondering, how can I FEEL love by myself? Well keep reading for some simple tips on how to do this:
- Treat yourself to a massage or buy a vibrating massage mat from amazon.
- Get a bubble bath and some sweet-smelling lotions and have an at-home luxury day.
- Establish a skincare routine and use it to wind down every night.
- Get a foam roller and take some time each day to stretch your body.
- Invest in some deluxe bedsheets and cozy blankets.
In the words of Dr. Gary Chapman, “Love is a choice you make every day.”
So with these suggestions, I hope you make a commitment to loving yourself each and every day.
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