“Your greatest responsibility is to love yourself and to know you are enough.” – Anonymous
What is the first image that you think of when someone says “self-love”? Perhaps your mind conjures images of manicures and a candle-lit bubble bath. This is the image of self-love and care that the media has fed us, making it challenging for some men to indulge in the necessary practice.
Statistics from the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) tell us that nearly 1 in 10 men experience depression and anxiety. Men die by suicide at more than triple the rate of women, and approximately 60% of men experience at least one trauma in their lives.
As a result, men are almost two times as likely to binge drink than women and nearly 50% of men are dishonest about their experiences with depression. For a long time, there has been a stigma against male self-love practices. And it’s time to erase it.
The Importance Of Self-Love – For Everyone
The first step in being able to genuinely love others is to love yourself. Self-love can be described as a transformative process that instills a positive perspective about yourself in your own mind. This gives you the ability to love yourself and then radiate this powerful love outwards.
By forming a healthy relationship with yourself, you’re able to extend this attitude to others in your life. You learn how to relate to the rest of the world in a genuine, affectionate way. It’s important not to misconstrue self-love with being arrogant or smug. Instead, it’s a lifestyle of prioritizing positive speak and appreciation.
Why Are Men Neglected?
Self-love is not only appropriate for women, who are comically known to be more in touch with their feelings and emotions. There’s an age-old stigma that has isolated men from this necessary relationship with self. Over the years, this has proven detrimental to the mental health and livelihood of males around the world.
It’s not unusual for men to struggle with feelings of inferiority, anger, and frustration. There is the constant pressure to appear strong and keep emotions of all sorts at bay. In the process of upholding these unhealthy habits, self-love is neglected.
But there is a different form of strength that is synonymous with confidence and honesty. There is a certain attraction that radiates from a person who is comfortable in their own skin, and able to pass that joy to others by building them up.
With the stigma of male self-love being ridiculed for so long, how do we erase it?
Tips To Practice Male Self-Love
Contrary to (un)popular opinion, prioritizing your mental health doesn’t make you weak. Whether you identify as a male or a female, your mental wellbeing should be a top priority. Here are some easy, daily tips to incorporate into your life to practice self-love.
Understanding & Acceptance
Dita Von Teese said, “You can be the ripest, juiciest peach in the world, and there’s still going to be somebody who hates peaches”. If you constantly put pressure on yourself to compete and compare with those around you, then it becomes increasingly difficult to accept who you are.
Understand that everyone makes mistakes and has room for improvement, and make the effort to accept who you are in the present. Choosing to focus on your strengths instead of your weaknesses will highlight your worth and potential, giving you space to grow.
There’s an outdated stigma that men need to always be strong and never show any sign of weakness. However, knowing that nobody is perfect introduces a very unsettling revelation that by ignoring these weaknesses, they serve as a character blemish (or are completely ignored).
Choosing to practice self-love as a male means to change your attitude towards your weaknesses and adopt an angle of enthusiasm for the opportunity to improve on your flaws. Often, in order to do this, you need to learn to forgive yourself for past mistakes rather than harboring the heavy feelings of guilt, anger, and failure.
Surround Yourself With Happiness
There’s a reason that they say that “birds of a feather, flock together”. The company that you keep, the activities that you enjoy, and the content that you consume will have a monumental impact on your attitude and wellbeing.
Take care to invest in healthy relationships and do things that you love to do. When you’re in a happy space, make an effort to share this happiness with those around you.
Be True To Yourself
Take the time to get to know yourself on a deep level by carving out personal time for reflection. Whether this manifests in the form of a jog, journaling, or going for a long drive. Being true to yourself in your life choices and behavior will allow you to meet your potential in a way that only you can do.
You may find that you need to stop trying to please everyone and comparing yourself to others in the process. This is all a part of tapping into the infinite source of love that is yours to enjoy (and share).
It’s easy to get lost in a world of comparison where you always fall short of what you assume to be the ideal. But did you know that practicing gratitude is a fantastic way to put your life into perspective and make you realize how much you have to appreciate?
Together with mindfulness, gratitude can shape your outlook on life and bring you joy in a genuine way.
Sometimes Additional Help Is Needed
Being able to genuinely love yourself has a direct correlation on your self-esteem. While all of these tips are certain ways to practice self-love in theory, the practical implication may need a bit of external help.
Rather than find love and worth in the arms of another, practicing discourse with someone else can have a deeply positive impact.
Whether you need healing from a breakup or a grounding experience, PS. Love Yourself’s signature and the exclusive program can help you to come back to yourself and make it priority number one.