How you can be a better lover... to yourself
Updated: Oct 9
You spent the night before perusing the aisles of Walmart searching for the best box of Valentines to pass out to your classmates the next day and you can hardly wait to get your hands on all of the heart shaped, sweet treats coming your way. Oh, the excitement of secretly choosing a special card to give to your crush!
Do you remember a time like this as a kid in elementary school?
Valentine’s Day was celebrated without exclusivity, no one was left out or made to believe that they weren’t deserving of a few corny Valentines and loads of Hershey’s Kisses. This “day of love” looked nothing like what it would transform itself to be as you grew older. You're not boo'd up? How dare you celebrate this day! Oh, but I soon realized that not only could love be celebrated 24/7/365, but the love of myself was just as precious.
This year, for Valentine's Day, I got to revisit a piece of my younger self by going back to my elementary school and teaching a group of 25 fourth and fifth grade girl's about self love. (just for context: I volunteer/mentor with these group of girls once or twice a month) While I can't speak for everyone, I know I certainly did not have anyone talking to me about self love at 10-11 years old.
Looking at and listening to these young girls talk about what self love meant to them and whether or not they felt confident in themselves made me realize that we all can learn how to be better lovers to ourselves. Imagine being able to go back and tell your younger self all the things it took you years to simply grasp.
As "trendy" as self love may seem on social media these days, it's one of the most valuable things that you will need in every area of your life. Whether you're in a relationship or not, there are times where it will just be you. And when you're in the bathroom alone staring at your reflection in the mirror, you'll have to decide if you love everything about the person looking back at you.
Being a better lover includes, but is not limited to: reaffirming yourself when you feel negative thoughts creeping in, honoring your body by adopting better lifestyle habits, opening yourself up to healing, not going back to toxic situations that suck the life out of you, breaking up with self-deprecating thoughts and words and the list goes on.
Self-love can be the gift on Valentine's day that keeps on giving. Watching each one of the 25 fourth and fifth grade girls go around in a circle and say what made them special or unique or what they're great at, I saw that not only do we often times struggle with simply acknowledging our beauty/greatness (inside and out), but that we could all be a little gentler with ourselves.
While falling in love with yourself is easier said than done, I believe it's a process that yields a grand reward. So, if you haven't... start today. What better day to start than on the day that explodes with celebrations of love?
I mean, even if you don't completely believe in this so-called holiday.
And while you can't go back in time to tell your younger self the things you wish you could, you can become the person your younger self would be proud of. So, on this day, take a little extra time to love on yourself.
You are whole. You are enough. You are worthy of love and to be loved by others, but most importantly by yourself.
Happy Valentines Day to all of the lovers, single or in a relationship. To those healing. To those learning to love. To those growing in love. To those blissfully loving themselves.
We can all be better lovers to ourselves and we can start today.
Thanks for reading, and don't forget... be great! xo.