Love Yourself and Let Yourself Be Loved

Love Yourself and Let Yourself Be Loved
Gema Sánchez Cuevas

Written and verified by the psychologist Gema Sánchez Cuevas.

Last update: 28 July, 2022

Pleasures should be inserted into life like commas into a sentences. It’s essential that we do things that we enjoy, that we take advantage of the opportunities that are presented to us without thinking too much about it. Without expectations, simply with the desire to experience life. Thus, love yourself and let yourself be loved.

Loving oneself is complicated but it’s essential so that others may love us as well. Fall in love with your body, flaws, virtues, with each and every thing that awakens your passion, with the way you smile and walk through life.

“When I was 5 years old, my mother told me that happiness was the key to life itself. When I went to school, I was asked what I wanted to be when I grew up. I answered, “Happy.” They told me I didn’t understand the question, and I told them they didn’t understand life.”
-John Lennon-

Truly love yourself

Loving oneself is a fundamental part of feeling well, so that others may love us, so we can enjoy and be happy. Sometimes it’s complicated, because we criticize ourselves and can become our own worst enemy.

girl hugging heart

Self-esteem is the evaluative perception we have of ourselves. In other words, it’s how we see and value ourselves, and it has four fundamental elements according to the Argentinian psychologist, Walter Riso. They are as follows:

  • Self-concept: What you think about yourself
  • Self-image: How much you like yourself
  • Self-reinforcement: How much you reward yourself
  • Self-efficacy: How much confidence you have in yourself

In order to reinforce these four elements that make up self-esteem, to live at peace with ourselves and be more happy, we suggest some simple actions you can take to appreciate all the good there is within you.

Don’t compare yourself

During adolescence we begin a detailed analysis of our physique, down to the pore, and the result is that there’s always something in excess or something lacking. We criticize the color of our hair, our legs, our teeth. We insist on finding our defects. We also compare ourselves to other people. People we consider more attractive, therefore making us feel bad.

Comparisons are detrimental, because the concept of beauty varies greatly from one person to another. It’s a totally subjective concept. What we may consider beautiful, another person might consider ugly or vice versa. Therefore, comparisons are useless.

“Wanting to be somebody else is wasting the person that you are.“

-Marilyn Monroe-

Discover and highlight the things you like about yourself. Dress how you like, not how others expect you to dress. If you feel good, that’s what matters. There will always be someone more handsome or ugly than you. But who cares? You have unique qualities that no one else has. Discover them and their true potential.

Invent your own concept of beauty

The concept of beauty isn’t only something subjective, it also depends a great deal on the era. For example, some time ago, a chubby, white woman with red lips was considered beautiful, while the current definition of beauty is radically different.

lady holding tiny moon

Therefore, the best thing to do is create your own concept of beauty. Walter Riso affirms that the following premise is the healthiest one to apply:

“You can decide what’s your own version of beautiful. It’s not easy, but it’s worth trying. Just like in order to dress well, you don’t have to docilely follow the fad and conform. In order to like yourself you don’t have to use external concepts. You don’t have to be like anybody in particular. There are no theoretical and scientific reasons that justify the superiority of one form of beauty over another. The important thing, therefore, is not to be beautiful, but to like yourself.”  

Reward yourself

When our partner doesn’t take care of us, ask how we’re doing, call us, or express interest in us, we might doubt how much he or she cares about us.

In the same sense, if you don’t reward yourself, dedicate time to yourself, and express affection, your self-esteem will be null or insufficient. Self-love, by principle, isn’t very different from loving other people.

Therefore, take care of your body and mind, do things you enjoy, things that bring you pleasure. Smile and go out and share that smile. If you like going to the movies, go. If you like bike riding, go out and ride. If you like to read, buy some books and read them.

Get rid of repressive beliefs

According to Walter Riso, the repressive beliefs that keep us from reinforcing our self-esteem are the following four:

  • The cult of habit. It is the worship of a series of behaviors that are considered normal and which we should all have, but that kind of behavior will not allow us to innovate and change.
  • The cult of rationalization. It will turn us into robots, simply accustomed to assessing our feelings to see if they are convenient. There are some things that aren’t made to be thought about but simply experienced.
  • The cult of self-control. Trying to control every feeling and emotion. Of course, a balanced self-control is necessary in order to prevent destructive behaviors, but we must not strive for absolute containment of feelings and emotions.
  • The cult of modesty. It will make you not value your success or efforts. This is not about boasting over your achievements, but about recognizing our potential, without excuses or blame, in order to be realistic, see your qualities and appreciate your efforts.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.