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In the wake of Valentine’s Day, we often focus on all the romance and forget the most important relationship we have—the one with ourselves. How can we honor this relationship? Practice self-love. Some think self-love is selfish, but it’s exactly the opposite. You see, when you love yourself, you begin to love others more deeply. And on top of that, others begin to see and love you more deeply. This romance season, begin your practice of self-love, and see how the world around you changes.
Here are some ways to start:
There’s no need to wait for someone else to write you a beautiful note and tell you how wonderful you are. You are wonderful. You are beautiful. And you are worthy of love. So, begin writing love notes to yourself.
There are different ways to practice this: You can write a letter to yourself as you are today. Or you can write to a younger version of yourself, who was struggling at the time. You can even write a letter to your future self. Sometimes, they’ll write you back—which is pretty cool.
This is a powerful and healing practice if you do it regularly.
This is a specific mediation to nurture positive feelings about yourself. Picture yourself, or a younger version of yourself. You can look at an old picture or even use a mirror! Look yourself in the eyes, and tell yourself: "I love and accept you just the way you are." Repeat this several times, and remember, there’s no one more worthy of your love than you!
I know. Here we are with gratitude again. But this time, it’s a little different. Instead of looking for things around you, begin to practice gratitude for you. Ask yourself, “What about myself am I grateful for?” And, “Why are these things important?” It’s this second question, the “why,” that allows you to feel gratitude. Remember, gratitude is not a thought, it’s a feeling. It’s the magical key to start feeling good about yourself.
There's nothing quite as powerful as forgiving yourself for past mistakes. Yes, you may have screwed up. Yes, you probably could have done things differently. But the reality is, you’re human. And you make mistakes like every other human on the planet.
My favorite definition of forgiveness comes from Dr. Jampolsky. He says that forgiveness is giving up hope that the past can be different. It acknowledges the past and frees us from having to live it over and over again. And while forgiving others is important, self-forgiveness is a missing ingredient. Self-forgiveness unlocks you from the past and allows you to create a new future yourself.
You can say anything, no rules here! Thank your toes for helping you walk. Seriously, when’s the last time you thanked your toes for anything? And think about what life would be like without your toes. Or compliment yourself on your smile, your artistic ability, or how great a cook you are. Anything, just start being kind to yourself.
As I’ve been getting older, I use this regularly when I look in the mirror. Almost every day I see new wrinkles and gray hairs. Of course, my first reaction is still, “What are you doing there?” And then I catch my myself, look endearingly at this changed part of me, and say, “Welcome to family.”
This one practice has completely changed my relationship with myself. And bonus, it’s helped me see others differently as well. We are all growing and changing.
In the end, self-love is about treating yourself as a friend. You accept your friends, you forgive your friends, you say kind things to your friends. Self-love is about becoming your own friend. Treat yourself as you would treat a dear friend. Because no one is more deserving of your friendship than you.
And you can be your own friend every day.
Want to learn more about practicing self-love? Join the Self-Love Revolution!
Things are weird. Times are changing. It seems like just when we’re starting to get a grip, there’s another surprise. When it comes to beauty, we've had to adapt on our own due to salon closures, keep an eye on preparations and protocol changes during those closures, try to know what we’re doing before booking an appointment once they reopened, and maybe even brave the journey back to the salon. Whether you live in a place where salons are open, you’ve experienced a second shutdown, or you straight up haven’t had a haircut since March, we can all probably agree that we’re expecting some differences in the salon and spa world thanks to COVID.
We wanted to gauge how everyone is thinking and feeling about all this, so we put out a poll on our Instagram, asking you all what you expect from beauty salons right now.
Here’s what you had to say...
53% of you have returned to the hair salon by now, while 47% of you have not. This makes sense, because every area of the country is different when it comes to cases, closures, and mandates, and every person is different when it comes to risk and safety.
While many hair salons have begun operating outdoors due to government regulations, 58% of you said you’re fine with getting your haircut indoors, while the other 42% are more comfortable keeping it outside.
58% of you said you’d rather go to your hair salon than have your stylist come to you. I get it, home is a safe space, probably shouldn’t let any outsiders in.
69% of you said you’re “totally!” going to tip more for services once you start receiving them again. During this time without our stylists and aestheticians, I think we all realized how much we need them and appreciate them, and many of us are willing to show them a little extra gratitude to make up for the time we spent apart.
But, most of you aren’t. 56% of you said you have not cut or colored your own or a friend’s hair, because it was too risky, while the other 44% just “had to!”
Only 29% of you have returned to nail salons, while the rest are sticking to at-home manicures. Maybe we’re all just getting really good at it? But probably, it’s because a lot of them are still closed down, or because it’s a little more difficult to get a pedicure outdoors (we need our massage chairs!).
Our last poll question asked about what differences you’ve all noticed when heading back to the salon, and you all had a lot to say...
It’s a beautiful thing to see how the salon and spa community has come together, taken precautions, and adjustments, all so they can continue to help us look and feel our best. If you haven’t spoken to your stylist lately (or even if you have), don’t forget to shoot them a thank you and let them know you appreciate them.