God asks us to love others as we love ourselves. We need to fill our own cups with kindness and compassion so that we can share that love with others, yet sometimes we put ourselves last on our to-do lists. So here are some ways that will help you love yourself more so that you can love others better.
1. Discover God's perfect love for you by reading the Scriptures. Psalms is a good place to start. Consider this verse: "I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well (Psalm 139:14).
2. Write down a list of all your talents, gifts, and abilities. Ask your friends and family to add to your list. Then, if you're feeling unworthy or less than whole, read your list. (In our family, we celebrate Christmas Eve by creating a love box for each family member. We write down those things we love about each family member and then place it in a box. It's one of our most cherished possessions!)
3. Each morning, ask God to help you feel His infinite love for you and then find at least one way to share that love with someone else.
4. Stop the negative self-talk that says you are worthless or less than wonderful.
5. Choose friends that build you up.
6. Forgive yourself for being human and imperfect.
7. Do not allow the words or actions of others to determine your self-worth.
8. Memorize some positive affirmations that remind you of your worth. Here's one: I am loveable, and I am loved. As I child of God, I have divine qualities and gifts. When I ask for His help, God gives me the power to use these gifts to bless myself and others.
9. At the end of each day, thank God for creating you and for using you as His instrument to make the world a better place.
10. Do one loving thing for yourself each day. Spend a few minutes meditating. Read something that inspires you. Take a walk. Call a friend.
11. Find someone who needs your love and do one loving thing each day. That will radically increase your feelings of self-worth.
12. Set healthy boundaries. You cannot be all things for all people and maintain healthy balance in your lifetime. Sometimes the most loving thing you can say is "no."
13. Trust that the Lord is working in your life, even during the difficult times. Commit to memory these words from Proverbs: "Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths."
14. Do not compare yourself with others. (If you haven't already, read the previous post.)
15. Allow God to show you how much He loves you. Consider these words: "Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure (1 John 3:1-3).
Allow God to hold you in the arms of His love today. He loves you infinitely and will teach you how to love yourself more completely. As we ask for His help, He will reveal His love to you.
© Carol Brown