If you want to be a healthy, happy person, it’s very important to learn to love the person you see in the mirror. Although loving yourself can be very challenging if you grew up in a dysfunctional family, it’s definitely worth the time and effort!

Whether you feel stressed, anxious or depressed, or whether you are in a challenging relationship or going through a divorce, learning to love yourself is a crucial step in your healing process. When you honestly love yourself, your love overflows to everyone around you and everything in your life begins to sparkle and shine!

Self-love is the essential ingredient of a healthy, happy life. It gives you the self-esteem to believe in your abilities and pursue your dreams. It helps you make healthy choices. It allows you to achieve satisfaction and fulfillment. It frees you to give and receive love in loving, supportive relationships.

10 Ways to Practice Self-Love:

I. Say loving, positive words to yourself in the mirror every day. A good phrase to use is “I love you, just the way you are.” You can also compliment yourself sincerely on anything you do well that day.

2. Love your inner child. Take a few minutes to relax and imagine yourself as a child and say the kind, loving words to that little person that he or she always wanted to hear, for example, “You’re beautiful and special and important to me!”

3. Find ways to express your honest feelings and needs. Expressing your honest feelings and needs helps you to know who you really are. If there’s no-one you trust, start by writing in a journal. In time, you’ll learn to express your feelings to others as well.

4. Write a list of everything you value or appreciate about yourself. Start with simple things like your honesty, your caring or your sense of humor. Then let your list naturally grow to include other positive qualities you often overlook in yourself.

5. List of all of your successes. Start with the challenges you survived in your life and then move on to all the ways you’ve learned and grown through the years.

6. Make time in your life to do the things you love to do. Notice what excites you or fascinates you and make time to do those things more regularly.

7. Become the person you want to be. Practice in small ways being more kind, more loving, more generous and more successful. Then watch what happens over time.

8. Set clear boundaries about what you will and will not tolerate in your life! For example, “I’m very happy to listen to your feelings if you use I-messages, but I will absolutely not tolerate being criticized and put down!”

9. Imagine having the life of your dreams! Write in your journal about what your dream life would be. Then read it daily and imagine it to be already true until it manifests!

10. Find ways to laugh and have fun regularly! Your inner child loves to laugh and play. No matter how challenging life is, there’s always something to laugh about!

Healthy self-love will literally change your life from the inside out. It will definitely take work and effort, but you’ll never be sorry for the time you spent learning to love yourself. And whatever you do, don’t forget to have fun in the process!

Author's Bio: 

Kari Joys MS is an author, psychotherapist and energy healer in Spokane Washington. Through her work, Kari transforms stress, anxiety, depression and abuse issues into self esteem, inner peace and light-heartedness. Check out her website at http://www.Kari-Joys.com or her Facebook Fan page at http://www.facebook.com/EmotionalHealing.KariJoys.