Love Yourself Strong, Valentine’s Day and Everyday

love yourself strong

It’s Valentine’s Day, the Universal Day of Love!

Are you showing yourself any love today?

Even with all the happiness going on around me today, I can still remember one Valentine’s Day in particular, in my junior year of high school, where I certainly did NOT feel the love.

The boy I liked officially broke up with me the day before Valentine’s Day! As you can imagine, I was devastated. Ok, I know – a little dramatic, but hey, I was 17.

I mean seriously, the day before?

Looking for Love

I cried a lot that day back in high school. With no special Valentine, I received no special roses, no box ofcouple in love sitting on dockcandy, but more than that, I felt like I an extreme loser getting dumped. And of course, I was also quite concerned with what my friends would say, thinking that THEY would think I was a loser, too.

As a teenager, I thought I needed everyone’s validation. I was looking for it externally in all the wrong places (the candy, the boyfriend, and my friends’ opinions), but what I didn’t realize at the time was the power that God has given us all for self-love, strength, and internal validation – and that it was within me all along.

Fast forward to Valentine’s Day today. How’s your Valentine’s Day going?

You may or may not be seeing flowers delivered, or candy and teddy bears exchanged as tokens of a declaration of love to that special someone. But if you don’t have a special someone this year, don’t worry. You will be OK.

Validation

It’s true that Valentine’s Day can feel like one of the best – or the worst – days on the calendar. That said, if you don’t have someone to share it with this year, there is definitely no reason to go wallowing in self-pity or doing anything drastic like binge eating a carton of Ben & Jerry’s. The question this Valentine’s Day, and everyday really, is, where does your validation and strength come from?

And let’s ask another important question. Do you show yourself love, or are you too hard on yourself?

My dad used to sing a song to us when we were younger about the more love you give yourself, the more love you’ll have to give away. I definitely agree.

The Chatter

Try this exercise and see where your internal instincts take you:

When you look into a full-length mirror, what is your first impulse? Do you give yourself grace, or do you pick out your flaws and harp on the fact that your clothes are a bit too snug? Are you frustrated at your love handles, and curse at how you’re STILL trying to lose the “last ten pounds”?

If you are like most people, you probably answered, “yes” to at least one of those questions (or you’ve come up with a few of your own). But what if you changed that mindset, changed, the chatter in your head, and gave yourself the internal validation instead of trying to get it from the image you see in the mirror?

You can start right now by immediately stopping the negative self-talk and the critical commentary in your head. Then, focus on some of the awesomeness that is YOU, and be grateful. Remember, God only made one you, so that means you are pretty special!

Replace the negative talk. Speak to yourself as you would a friend, respect yourself as you would an elder, and most of all, see yourself as a whole person, worthy of love and honor, not one full of flaws.

Love Yourself Strong

But what if you have real issues with weight loss goals? Let’s face it, just “talking nice” to your mirror may give you some temporary internal validation, but it sure isn’t going to get you healthy and fit or make your jeans any looser if you are not taking any action.

So OK, you need to work on your weight loss goals. It’s not a sign of weakness to acknowledge that you need to put in some effort. It’s a sign of strength that you are willing to do it.

Tell yourself that. Everyday.

Then get real, and accept that there is work to do. And then, and make a plan.

HERE is a plan that works. Follow these “6 Ps”:

  • Proper nutrition
  • Physical exercise
  • Plenty of sleep
  • Positive relationships
  • Perseverance and faith
  • Patience

All of those? YUP, ALL of them.

If you are truly ready to love yourself strong and eliminate the negative self-talk for good,  you will know, because you will be ready to take action.

It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves. ~Edmund Hillary (first man to climb Mt. Everest)

Once you begin, don’t stop until you’ve met your goals. That’s where the perseverance comes in. And the patience. Trust the process, have faith that God won’t give you any challenge you can’t handle.

Follow the plan with commitment, and you will see. In time, the results will come, and you will learn to look in the mirror and love yourself strong – with or without a Valentine.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

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