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  • Writer's pictureClaudia Kent

Learning to Appreciate Inner & Outer Beauty: A Guide to Self-Love

Self-love is the act of accepting and appreciating oneself, flaws and all. It involves caring for your inner and outer self to achieve overall happiness and positive well-being. As society bombards us with narrow beauty standards, self-love becomes a necessary tool to combat the negativity and embrace our unique qualities. It's time we recognise the power of self-appreciation, and understand that it’s not narcissistic to take pride in oneself. Let's begin our journey towards self-love and positivity!

Understanding Inner Beauty

Everyone is unique, but we are trained to compare our looks to others or media-fed beauty standards. Accepting ourselves, flaws and all, is critical to developing a positive self-image. When we focus on being internally healthy and happy, it shows on the outside too. Embracing our flaws can sound daunting, but it is truly essential. Not everyone is blessed with perfect skin, toned muscles or lustrous hair, and that's okay. We are unique and beautiful in our ways, and it is time to embrace that wholeheartedly. Instead of comparing ourselves to unrealistic beauty standards, we should celebrate what makes us different. Developing a positive self-image means ensuring that we communicate kindly with ourselves, with encouraging self-talk instead of negative self-talk. Recognising our worth as individuals and developing inner happiness lets us radiate outward positivity. By setting aside time for activities that bring us joy, we would focus on building internal peace that projects externally too. Remember, it's okay not to conform to beauty standards, that does not define our worth. Embrace yourself, flaws and all, prioritise your adventures, and focus inside-out.

"Beauty is not a competition; it is a celebration of our individuality and the magic that lies within us."

Challenging Societal Beauty Standards

Let's be real, society has some strict beauty standards, and if you don't fit into this particular mould, good luck feeling good about yourself. It seems like we're constantly bombarded with images of what we "should" look like. But here's the thing: those standards are ridiculous and impossible for most people to meet. Rather than feeling bad about ourselves, we should be rejecting those ideals altogether. Who cares if we don't look like the airbrushed models in magazines? We're real people with real bodies, and that's something to be celebrated. Promoting body positivity is all about embracing what makes us unique. It's about recognising that beauty comes in all shapes, sizes, colors and abilities. We should be highlighting diverse beauty standards, not just the ones that fit into a narrowly-defined box. Our differences are what make us beautiful. Rejecting narrow beauty ideals is a major step towards self-love. When we stop trying to fit into someone else's idea of beauty, we can focus on what truly matters — feeling confident and happy in our own skin.

Mindfulness and Self-Love

When it comes to building self-love, practicing mindfulness is key. Start by expressing gratitude for everything you have, from the big things like your health and home to the small things like your morning coffee or that cute dog you saw on your walk. Taking time to appreciate these things can shift your mindset to a more positive one, helping you cultivate self-love. Meditating is another helpful technique for self-awareness and can promote self-love. Focusing on your breath and staying present in the moment can help you tune out negative self-talk and instead focus on your inner peace and happiness. Additionally, consciously replacing negative self-talk with positive affirmations can help you build self-love. Next time you catch yourself thinking "I am not good enough", flip the script and instead affirm "I am worthy and capable" or "I am beautiful just the way I am." These positive affirmations can really start to sink in and boost your self-love.

"Mindfulness teaches us to embrace our thoughts, feelings, and experiences with kindness, paving the way for a deeper level of self-love."

Building Self Love

Self-love is a journey, not a destination. Start by taking small steps every. Start by looking in the mirror and saying one positive thing about yourself every morning, even if it's as simple as "I have beautiful eyes." Over time, you'll start to see more and more positive things about yourself. Embrace your unique qualities and talents. Nobody is perfect, but everyone has something special about them that makes them unique. Focus on your strengths rather than your weaknesses. Don't beat yourself up over small mistakes or failures. It's okay to make mistakes and it's okay to fail. It's a part of life. Instead, learn from your mistakes and use them as a tool for growth. Most importantly, love yourself unconditionally. This means no matter what happens in life, you will always be there for yourself. You will always be your own biggest supporter. Remember, you are deserving of love and kindness just as much as anyone else. Take it one step at a time, be patient with yourself, and remember to always love yourself unconditionally.

To sum it up

Self-love is the key to self-confidence and development. Accept yourself for who you are, embrace your flaws, and don't let societal beauty standards define you. Recognise the power of loving and being true to yourself.

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