Throughout my life, I've encountered scores of people who don't appear to love themselves. They say negative things about their appearance, their lack of success at work, not being a good parent or child, or not making the right choices in life. While it is true that we all grapple with issues related to any of these items, we should spend more time on itemizing and being grateful for our positive attributes and successes, and less time on what we feel is wrong with us, negative experiences, or perceived failures. This article provides some tips on learning to love ourselves for who we are.

1. Make a list of the things you like about yourself. These items could relate to your physical appearance, your emotional status, your mental acuity, the type of friend or parent you are, how you relate to people at work, or any other positive attribute that comes to mind. Add to this list as you identify additional items you like about yourself. Keep this list in a place where you see it daily. It will remind you of your unique strengths, talents, skills, attributes, and gifts.

2. Make a second list of complements that you have received from family members, friends, coworkers, neighbors, and others. Again, add to this list every time you receive a compliment, if it is different from those already on your list. You will begin to see a pattern of the positive attributes that others see in you. Remember to keep this list in a place where you can review it daily. If you are experiencing difficulty in developing this list, ask people you trust what they love most about you.

3. Make time for yourself every day, even if it is just for 15 minutes. During this time, review your lists. They will remind you of what you and others like about you. This can be uplifting when you are having a rough day. Spending time with yourself can also allow an opportunity for you to examine issues, resolve problems, or recharge your batteries. By allowing yourself this special time, you are taking care of yourself, which is part of loving one’s self.

4. Learn how to enjoy those times when you are alone. Engage in activities that make you feel good and give you comfort, whether this is watching your favorite TV program, reading a good book, going out to your favorite restaurant, or taking a hot bubble bath. When you can be comfortable in being alone, doing those things you love most, you are showing yourself how much you value you. If you do not enjoy being alone, examine what is behind that. Assess why you need to constantly be around other people. What are you hiding from? What don't you want to face?

5. If you constantly berate yourself or can't understand how people can love you, you might want to consider counseling or therapy. Whether your issues come from childhood traumas or a series of negative experiences, it is never too late to put the past to rest and move on. We can't change the past but we can definitely shape our future. A counselor or therapist can help you to see how past experiences have resulted in current feelings and behaviors. Once you understand this and know that you can't change the past, you will be in a better position to move forward and begin exploring ways to appreciate you for the person you are and love yourself.

6. Spoil yourself, as you deserve it. Pamper yourself by doing what makes you feel good or loved. If it is spending a day at the spa, going on a vacation, or spending time with loved ones, set aside time to do it. Although I think you should spoil yourself daily, make sure you do this at least once a week. And don't feel guilty... you deserve it!

If you are experiencing difficulty in loving yourself, take time to develop a list of your strengths and attributes, take note of the compliments people give you, take time every day to relax and remember what makes you unique, learn how to enjoy your alone time, seek counseling or therapy if you need to work through past issues, and remember to spoil yourself, at least weekly if not every day. You are a loving person, and are loved by more people than you can imagine. Learn how to love yourself... you are your most important asset!

Copyright 2010 © Sharon L. Mikrut, All rights reserved.

Author's Bio: 

If you want to make positive changes in your personal and/or professional life, and create the life you desire and deserve, then working with Executive & Life Coach, Sharon L. Mikrut, is the solution. Although her specialty is in partnering with nonprofit executive directors and managers to maximize their resources in a competitive environment, she is passionate about working with all individuals committed to personal and/or professional growth. Visit her website at or Empowerment blog at and sign up for her free monthly messages.