How To Love Yourself First

How To Love Yourself First

Guest Article Written by Kat Narelle, Founder of Gracious Minds

Self-love is not selfish

The idea of self-love is a perplexing conversation, especially for women who are natural-born nurturers. Many of us find that practicing self-love is an impossible mental state to be in without crossing over the threshold of becoming selfish.

Woman in ocean. Photography by Gracious Minds.

Is it possible to love oneself in the same capacity of loving others?

The truth is you cannot love yourself and others in the same capacity. In fact, your relationship with yourself sets the tone for every other relationship. More importantly, loving yourself is not abandoning the ones you care about.

Self-love is showing care, love, and appreciation to oneself that extends far past the superficial into your core. Self-love has positive thoughts and emotions about yourself, that will not cause harm to others. Self-love is taking care of the human body that has been granted to you and displaying gratitude for the blessings that were given. Caring for yourself that deeply, will, in turn, enable you to care for others – gifting a more genuine, authentic care without resentment and upset. 

It is possible to love yourself and others without the emotions of guilt and an ultimatum to choose. Here are 3 tips that will help you to practice self-help so that you can preserve the authentic capacity to love others.  

Photography by Gracious Minds. Woman in shower, eyes closed, water running over her
  • Become self-aware of the things that make you happy.

How can you be on the road of self-love, if you haven’t a clue as to what makes you happy? What are your enjoyments of life – big and small? Make a list of all the things that give you joy in life and all the things that don’t. It’s essential to identify both. Boundaries are not just to protect others from you, but also protects them from the resentment and anger that naturally comes from overexerting yourself to others and saying yes to requests that you loathe.


  • Self-love enables you to love others more genuinely.

Self-love promotes seeking to improve oneself, which will result in you becoming a better person for others. When you work on improving yourself, you’ll have a greater capacity to love for others, and in turn, having the ability to accept love from others. The exchange of that genuine love with others and others with you will allow room to practice guilt-free self-love.

  • Practice gratitude.

Taking an appreciation toward your life’s blessings and having gratitude for everything positive around you will increase your capacity to love yourself and others. You’ll find misery and pain in the world, but also beauty and happiness. Practice daily gratitude by taking a few moments to write the things you are grateful for. It’s not enough to just think it, but by writing it, hardwires it into our subconscious minds allowing it to take root to our core.

Become conscious of following these 3 tips throughout your daily life. You will grow to love “loving yourself.” You will carry the key toward unlocking the true balance of self-love and loving others and learn that it’s far from being selfish after all.


Words & Photography by Gracious Minds


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