Have you ever been told you’re not perfect? Have you ever been criticized? There’s a lot of us. When we’re made to feel uncomfortable in who we are, it never feels good.
We tend to think that embracing and loving ourselves is too hard for us, or something that’s one and done.
For those who may have been judged for the whole life, establishing a positive sense of self can sometimes be difficult and confronting. For example some LGBT people (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) have not been well accepted by their social circle or even themselves.
Nowadays more LGBTQ+ people have been feeling comfortable and secure because many people are showing support and understanding on their identities. For example Diamond Serenity is encouraging people to show their pride with the new LGBTQ+ fashion collection.
However it is still unfortunately common that many LGBT people are struggling with developing a positive sense of self.
Especially when criticism and bad words are too overwhelmed on the Internet these days, we must make greater efforts to encourage positivity. We should be made to feel comfortable to embrace yourself.
What Does Embrace Yourself Mean?
What you say to embrace something, it means to not only accept it, but also to gleefully welcome it.
In the same way, to Embrace yourself means happily accept your own identity and uniqueness, and also love who you are.
It is not some tangible thing to do. You don’t have to like and love everything of yourself. Overdoing may turn to narcissism.
To embrace yourself, the most important thing you need to STOP doing is that: negative self-judgment.
This can be very hard. Sometimes you cannot avoid judging yourself for your appearance, your identity or what you did that you wish you didn’t do.
Instead of negative self-judgment, take positive actions. There are few things you can start to do and get to embrace yourself – be a positive and happy you.
5 simple ways to start to embrace yourself
According to psychotherapist Dayna M. Kurtz, self-love is “more of a practice, like yoga or meditation.”
It means we can get to embrace and love ourselves by daily practices.
Here are the six simple and doable ways we can practice to embrace ourselves.
Listen to yourself
Sometimes when we have a negative thought or feeling, we would usually turn to a punitive, critical approach. We would be harsh to ourselves. At this moment, be curious and empathic, and then listen to yourself.
But how? The simplest way is to start asking yourself questions:
How am I feeling right now?
Why am I thinking this way?
Where does this feeling stem from?
What does it mean to me?
What message is this feeling trying to send?
What do I really want to do?
What do I need to do?
By asking and answering questions yourself, you get to understand yourself more. You will be clear about what situation you are in, and is there any solutions to your situation.
It is a good practice to get yourself not to drill in to negative self judgment, but a positive logical self conversation.
Compliment yourself regularly
We often pick on our errors or focus on what we didn’t achieve. However, to start to know how to embrace yourself, you should also recognize the things that you do well. And these positive thoughts help the brain produces serotonin that creates a feeling of well-being.
Start with your appearance. Look at the mirror, when you find yourself evaluating your looks, try to shift the focus and make at least three kind comments to your appearance.
Let go of what others think of you
You will never be able to make everyone like you. There must be someone who would judge you and criticize you. In order to please the ones around, we often bend to fit into the roles that others have set for us. Sometimes you can act like a totally different person because that’s others want you to be. It will betray your true identity and will make you suffer from not being true to yourself.
Actually, you should never aim to make anyone to like you. You can’t be truly happy by only following others’ expectation. Let go of other people’s expectations and start to focus on what you want and how you want to be. Only you would know the best that what can make you happy.
Surround yourself with supportive people
Our social circle affect many things in our life. Take a look on who you are spending time with. Are they being nice and supportive to you? Or are they being mean and harsh? Sometimes your family and friends won’t be all positive to you.
Try to spend your time with those who can make you feel comfortable and being cared, instead of who don’t have your best interest at heart.
Good social circle can have good influence on many sides of your life.
Learn How to Say No
Are you feeling you have been given too much pressure from others’ expectation and demands? It is said that when you can be able to say ‘no’ in a kind and respectful way, your inner self would feel secure and strong.
How to say no? If you are usually pressed to say yes, it can be really difficult. However, learning how to say no is a good practice to start to love yourself more.
Here are some sample you can try to say no: “Thank you for thinking of me, but, sorry, I can’t make it,” or “I can’t make it, but let me recommend someone to you who might be able to help.”
This is another way to make supportive and positive emotions. There must be something you are granted that you can be thankful to. Think of 3 things that you can feel grateful to everyday. This could be anything, from your health to the house you are living or the lovely pet you have.
You may still not be able to accept and embrace yourself just by one snap. It is fine. You just need practice. But don’t need to push yourself too harsh. Tell yourself, you will be fine.