Updated: Apr 16, 2019
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What is self-love, and how does it compare to self-worth and self-improvement? Why are any of these terms important to our mental health and well-being?
"the instinct by which one's actions are directed to the promotion of one's own welfare or well-being, especially a regard for one's advantage."
"the sense of one's own value or worth as a person; self-esteem; self-respect."
"improvement of one's mind, character, etc., through one's own efforts." (Dictionary.com)
Let's use a simple formula with the previous terms:
Self-Improvement + Self-Worth = Self-Love
This formula will help us have a clearer understanding of self-love, what it's made of, and how to achieve it. Self-growth and improvement have become such an integral part of my own mental health journey. Focusing on these goals for myself, while practicing self-love and relearning my self-worth, allowed a clear and healthy path towards recovery and daily management of my mental health through self-care.
Below are a few self-love quotes to inspire your journey, followed by self-love journal prompts for personal improvement, growth, and development!
Feedback from a loyal Rose-Minded reader:
"I love this exercise and plan to use it with my groups. Also the prompt for goals/thoughts on one’s life is something I’m going to use for a New Year’s group activity. Thank you Kay!"
Cynthia Lee, L.P.C., C.A.G.S. Psychotherapist Outpatient Clinic
“The best day of your life is the one on which you decide your life is your own. No apologies or excuses. No one to lean on, rely on, or blame. The gift is yours – it is an amazing journey – and you alone are responsible for the quality of it. This is the day your life really begins.” – Bob Moawad
“When I loved myself enough, I began leaving whatever wasn’t healthy. This meant people, jobs, my own beliefs and habits – anything that kept me small. My judgement called it disloyal. Now I see it as self-loving.” – Kim McMillen
“There came a time when the risk to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” – Anaïs Nin
“I found in my research that the biggest reason people aren’t more self-compassionate is that they are afraid they’ll become self-indulgent. They believe self-criticism is what keeps them in line. Most people have gotten it wrong because our culture says being hard on yourself is the way to be.” – Kristen Neff
“You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.” – Buddha
Self-Love Journal Prompts
How do you treat others you love? How is this different or the same as how you treat yourself with love?
What are a few obstacles that seem to challenge your practice of self-love?
Make a list: Brainstorm new ways to practice self-love while overcoming the previous obstacles/challenges.
In what ways do you accept yourself and the things you cannot change? In what ways do you not accept yourself?
How do self-acceptance and appreciation affect one's perception of themselves?
How is your self-love influenced by others' perceptions or actions toward you? Explain how, and if negatively affecting your life, how to possibly change this.
What does self-worth mean to you (in your own words after reading the definition above)?
How do you think one's self-worth influences their self-love?
Analyze your own self-worth. What are some areas you may need to work on?
What does self-improvement mean to you (in your own words after reading the definition above)?
How do you think self-improvement and self-love are related?
What are some ways you've shown self-improvement lately? What are some areas of your life you could work on?
Name some major ways these areas can impact your life if improved upon. Then, think back a little bit and try to think of a few ways they already have (the practice or lack of).
A journal is a highly recommended method, not only by Rose-Minded but researchers alike, for tracking, analyzing, and improving your mental heath. Self-improvement can be great motivation to begin using a journal; to see other ways expressive writing can improve mental health, check out 11 Scientifically-Proven Reasons Journal Prompts are Essential to Your Mental Health.
If you suffer from a specific mental health disorder then also check out Rose-Minded's helpful journal guides. The journal guides are packed with in-depth journal prompts for anxiety, depression, and bipolar disorders.
See more on each guide by clicking the problem you, or someone you know, may be experiencing!
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