With Valentine’s day approaching, love is in the air. But what if we change the way we look at this ‘couples’ holiday and practice self-love instead? After all, the relationship you have with yourself is the most important. At Zany&Shy, we believe true self-love isn’t just about the small actions, like a facemask or a bubble bath; it’s about developing habits that remind you to put yourself first. To do so, appreciate yourself, look inwards, and create habits and practices that make you feel special.
Enjoy our favorite Zany&Shy self-love ideas this Valentine’s season
"You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection"
Say Goodbye to Negativity
There are things in life that drain you and others that charge you. In all its forms, negativity is a drainer, be that negative talk to yourself or negative energy from those around you. Practice self-love by eliminating those from your life that don’t make you feel good; you are amazing, and anyone that doesn’t make you feel that way doesn’t deserve your company! Instead, surround yourself with people who raise you up, love you, and encourage you to be the best version of yourself. At the same time, feel free to set boundaries and say ‘no’ to plans or requests that don’t serve you. If you don’t feel like going out for dinner, explain why, and allow yourself time at home for self-love and self-care instead.
Self-Love Ideas: Quit social media! It doesn’t have to be forever, but allowing yourself a break from scrolling social media is a really great way to look out for yourself. Take some time to unfollow any accounts which aren’t making you feel good - for example, those that don’t align with your values or set unrealistic body expectations.
"Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see a shadow"
- Helen Keller
Stop Comparing Yourself to Others
Comparing yourself to anyone, be that in your relationship, finances, or work life, will never make you feel good. It can deplete your self-love as you judge yourself against others. Because of this, it’s vital to remember that you never truly know others’ lives, especially those you see on social media. What might look like perfection rarely is. In fact, they might be looking at you and comparing themselves!
"Comparison is the thief of joy"
- Theodore Roosevelt
Practice Self-Love: Look at those you compare yourself to and turn inwards. Dig deep and ask yourself:
‘Why am I feeling this way?’
‘What is it they have that I want?’
‘Why am I judging myself?’
Use the answers to these questions to inspire you towards the life you deserve!
Find Joy in the Small Moments
Practice self-love and the art of being content in your life by finding beauty in the small things. This could be getting out in nature and breathing in the goodness of fresh air, flowers, and trees. Or perhaps it’s doing small activities that bring you joy, like growing veggies in the garden or creating a beautiful table arrangement for dinner. These small but wonderfully joyful moments are a great way to practice self-love. It allows you to switch off from the buzz of life and focus entirely on yourself and the present moment.
If it’s hard for you to switch off and practice mindfulness, there are plenty of videos, apps, and books you can find to guide you through the process. Yoga, for example, is fantastic for the body and the mind, supporting you with breathwork and the meditation necessary for self-love.
"Great acts are made up of small deeds"
- Lao Tzu
Repeat Positive Affirmations
What better way to practice self-love than appreciating yourself aloud daily? Write down 10 positive affirmations about yourself and start your day by reciting them, reminding yourself of how wonderful you are. If you’re worried you might forget, leave notes for yourself around the house, on the mirror in the bathroom, or the fridge. If you’re having a bad day, just seeing these little reminders of how well you’re doing will reset you on the path to happiness!
Affirmations to try
"I am confident"
"I am loved for who I am"
"I am enough"
"I am motivated"
Look After Your Body
Looking after your body is one of the main ways to practice self-love. The whole nervous system is linked, and our body is affected by our mind and vice-versa. For that reason, it’s essential to think holistically, looking after your body and mind as one, and always appreciating the mind-body connection.
Start by incorporating some form of exercise into your daily routine (an excellent way to look after your mental health) or spend some time cooking nutritional and delicious meals. Additionally, look after your muscles by booking in for a massage or taking a soak in the bath with some essential oils.
Self-Love Ideas: As part of your meditation, thank your body for everything it does for you: your lungs for helping you to breathe, your mind for supporting you in your creative endeavors, and your feet for moving you from A to B. This gratitude is another way to practice self-love.
"Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live"
- Jim RohnSelf-Care Ideas for Powerful Women
What does beauty mean to you? It isn’t necessarily what we see in magazines and across influencers’ well-curated Instagram feeds. We are all beautiful in different ways, but sadly, the pressure of society and the digital world place an unrealistic beauty standard on women. What’s more, this pressure is felt by the people we look up to, causing them to use filters and photoshop on their photos, which continues the cycle of unrealistic ‘beauty’.
Beauty standards are constantly changing, whether culturally or because of the trends of the moment. By rewriting this narrative and assuring ourselves that we are beautiful, we can all go some way to living happily in our skin. Practice self-love by reminding yourself that you are gorgeous, both inside and out. After all, beauty is a feeling that can help you wear your smile with confidence!
"Beauty begins the moment you decide to be yourself"
- Coco Chanel
Do What You Love
Doing the things you love is the perfect way to practice self-love. Think about the incredible feeling you get when you do something you are passionate about and the sense of freedom it gives you. Consider also trying new things; that feeling of achievement and success will boost your self-love. For example, maybe you want to learn a new language or try surfing for the first time? Challenge yourself and enjoy the feeling of pride!
Self-Love Ideas: Part of learning new things and practicing your passions is achieving your goals. Whether they’re small or big, working towards your goals gives you a profound sense of fulfillment.How to Set Goals
Simple yet effective, treating yourself to something special is a beautiful way to self-love. This might be different for everyone, whether buying a piece of jewelry to celebrate your success at work or treating yourself to a nice dinner at your favorite restaurant. Whatever it is, know that you deserve to be spoilt!
"The most important relationship is the one you have with yourself"
- Diane Von Furstenberg
Zany&Shy Gift Guide
It’s tough to practice self-love if you carry trauma, unresolved sadness, or anger. Spend some time turning inwards and acknowledging the feelings that come up. For example, do you feel stressed or anxious? Try to determine why and how you can move away from these feelings. This might be simply forgiving yourself for something that happened in the past, journaling and writing down your feelings on paper, or finding a therapist to help you work through your challenges.
You deserve to live a life of joy, contentment, and inner peace; allow yourself to do this by practicing self-love and taking care of yourself.
Declutter Your Home
As the saying goes: “Tidy house. Tidy mind”. Surrounding yourself with clutter can lead to feelings of overwhelm and confusion in your mind. This can make you feel stressed and contribute to low-self esteem. Taking the time to declutter and organize your home is a great way to practice self-love and self-care, whether it’s color-coding and clearing out your wardrobe or rearranging your kitchen to make better use of the space. By living in a space you can be proud of, you increase your feeling of self-love, which has a knock-on effect in other areas of your life.
Self-Love Ideas: Working from home? Many of us are working from home due to the global pandemic. Working and living in a messy space can cause a lot of stress, leaving us unable to draw the line between work and pleasure. Find yourself a peaceful corner of the home to work and organize this space to support you with productivity. Make sure the rest of the house is a sanctuary to retreat to once you’re done with the working day.
Practice Compassion and Care for the World
Helping others is scientifically proven to affect the brain positively. It gives us great joy to spread love and practice compassion, knowing that we’re doing some good in the world. Practice one act of kindness a day, be that helping someone across the road, picking up trash, or planting a tree to support the earth’s healing.
"As you grow older, you will discover you have two hands, one for helping yourself, the other for helping others"
- Maya AngelouHow to be More Environmentally Friendly
Every woman deserves to feel special, and we can control that by using that practice of self-love. With this in mind, Zany&Shy works with a mission to make every single customer feel confident, radiant, and empowered, whether that’s through small everyday acts or pure indulgence. There’s no right or wrong when it comes to self-love, so start incorporating these healing, nurturing, and peaceful habits into your daily life and feel your happiness soar!