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How To Really Love Yourself

Ever since the various self-actualization movements came into existence during the 1970s, the term "love yourself" has been thrown around so much that it seems to have lost most of its meaning. It's easy to tell those who are sad, frustrated or disappointed with the way that their lives have turned out that all of their problems would disappear if they would only love themselves more. However, effective ways to achieve this goal are rarely discussed among those who advise others to give their self-esteem a boost by boosting their self-love. In fact, they frequently make it sound as if falling in love with yourself is as easy as falling for a fascinating new lover. However, that simply is not the way that human nature works. Following are some ways that the average person can increase his or her self-esteem and live a better life as a result.

Increasing Self-Esteem Through Actions

How people spend their time can have a significant impact on how they feel about themselves. Doing things that benefit others is an excellent way to elevate self-esteem. This does not mean that it's necessary to spend most of one's time performing charitable work in order to have a strong sense of self-worth. However, a certain amount of selfless charity work can improve anyone's perspective.

A Good Self Image Doesn't Depend on Putting Others Down

Those who harbor negative feelings about who they are as human beings frequently attempt to compensate by putting others down. This always backfires, however, and leaves the person who puts others down feeling worse than before. This type of behavior often becomes such a habit that some people aren't even aware of it when they put other people down.

The Perils of Bluffing, Boasting and Bragging

Many people unknowingly attempt to increase feelings of self-worth by boasting, bluffing, bragging and otherwise puffing themselves up. Like putting others down, this behavior has the opposite of the desired results and is always easy for others to see through. Those who use this tactic to boost their feelings of self-worth frequently find that the behavior becomes so ingrained in their personal interaction patterns that they don't even realize that others are not reacting to them in a positive manner.

People who have developed healthy levels of self-esteem spend very little time actually thinking about themselves. On the other hand, those with negative self images are constantly thinking about how others see them and sometimes become so socially immobilized that they have a substantial amount of difficulty functioning in social environments. Ironically, people who spend substantial time wondering how others view them are frequently blind to the normal signs that indicate whether they are being seen in a negative or positive light. Those who experience true self-love are comfortable around others, but more significantly, other people are at ease around them. The most effective way of knowing what people truly think of themselves is to observe how other people feel when they are in their presence.

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