4 easy self love tips to stay positive and happy. Being a woman in today’s digital world can be hard so it’s more important than ever to practice self-love!
As a blogger, a lot of my time is spent on social media. Not just sharing, but also interacting which inevitably turns into scrolling. I mean we all know what it's like to get caught in the rabbit hole of social media, right? While mindlessly scrolling can be fun, it's also something that we need to be mindful of.
Scrolling through an endless feed of gorgeous photos can lead many of us into the mindset of comparison.
We see what people are sharing on social media and we start to compare our lives against that. Maybe it's someone's looks. Or maybe someone's relationship. Maybe it's someone's perfect breakfast bowl. Or even someone's kitchen.
We get jealous and instead of feeling inspired and happy for that person, we get down on ourselves. We focus on what we don't have and compare the life we're living with what we're seeing in our feed.
Here's the problem with that: your feed is curated. It's not real life. What people are sharing on Instagram these days isn't a true look inside their life. It's a snapshot. And it's showing the good.
So comparing ourselves to what we see in our feed is basically pointless. Because our feeds are made up of tiny little glimpses into the life of the people we follow.
Look at my feed for example. Do you think all my food looks like that? No way! I wouldn't have enough hours in a day to make all my meals looks like that. Each one of those photos took me at least 3 – 4 hours to put together. From the cooking, the styling, the shooting, the editing, and the posting.
Most of the time my food is messy. It's a hodgepodge of leftovers and it's me in my pajamas, sitting on my couch watching Netflix. Not so glamorous, now is it?
But the comparison game on our feeds isn't actually what I wanted to talk about today. What I wanted to focus on was Instagram Stories (and other platforms like that).
When Instagram Stories came out, we (as in us bloggers), didn't really know how they were going to work. But it ended up being a place where you can get a little more personal, you can build a stronger connection with your followers and you can be a little more real.
I use stories to bring you behind the scenes in my kitchen and show snippets of my life that aren't necessarily “feed-worthy”. But the more and more I am tuned into stories, the more I realize that just like our feeds, these snippets are also curated. They're the parts of our life that sure, might be a bit less glamorous, but we still control what we're sharing.
One of the things that really hit home to me recently were comments I was getting about my skin. I kept getting messages that I had perfect skin. Or that she wished she had skin as good as mine.
And here's the truth…it was a filter.
There's a filter on Instagram stories called the “beauty filter” and it does just that. It smoothes out your skin, evens out your tone, and makes your eyes pop. But it looks real, so it's almost unnoticeable. And I realized that people watching me thought that's how I actually looked. They were comparing my filtered face with their unfiltered skin.
But most importantly, they were looking at me, hiding behind my filter, and thinking that was real. Here I was promoting natural beauty and I was perpetuating this message that I'm not good enough as I am.
Self Love Tips in A Digital World
Now I don't want to this post to turn into a rant session, because that's not my goal. My main goal is to help you on getting out of the comparison trap that social media inevitably brings us down.
Because it's easy to be scrolling through your feed or watching people on stories and think they have the perfect life. The perfect house, the perfect relationship, the perfect skin, etc. When in reality that person could be dealing with some major life issues that they've just chosen not to share.
So I want to give you some tips for self-love in this crazy digital world we're living in.
1. Do An Audit of Your Instagram
First things first, it's time to do an audit of who you follow on Instagram. I want you to spend 15 – 20 minutes, scrolling through all the pictures on your feed. And think about how you feel after looking at each. Are you feeling inspired? Are you feeling happy? Or are you feeling down about yourself? Or do you find that you're comparing yourself to that person?
If so, it's time to unfollow. Even if it's someone you know or it's a friend, if their pictures and posts aren't adding positivity into your life, then you need to remove them from your feed. If you don't want to unfollow them, you can also just hide all their posts so they won't show up as you're scrolling.
I recommend doing this exercise every few months. It's actually quite liberating and you end up with a feed that is totally curated to help you feel GOOD instead of bad.
2. Balance The Negative With a Positive
Comparison is something everyone struggles with. Literally everyone. So to say, “just stop comparing yourself to others” isn't helpful. Instead, I want you to try and actually notice when those times happen. When they do, flip that conversation around in your head to something positive about yourself.
Let's take the skin example. If you're scrolling through your feed or seeing someone who has “perfect” skin and you feel jealous, catch yourself. Instead of focusing on how “bad” you think your skin is, focus on something you love about yourself. Maybe it's your eyes, the color of your hair, your butt, your smile. No matter what it is, take that thing you're comparing and turn it into something positive.
3. Set Phone Free Times
In today's world, we're constantly bombarded with messages. From social media to advertisements, to videos, you name it. Information is getting thrown at us all the time and a lot of times the products you're seeing promoted are things that are going to make you “better”. Essentially the underlying message is that you aren't enough as you are right now.
One way to help avoid that is to set some phone free time. I like to put my phone away at 8pm every night and not look at it again. I've also stopped scrolling on social media while I'm in the bathroom (TMI?) or before bed. I have a Kindle, and also have the Kindle app installed on my phone, so whenever I find myself mindlessly scrolling, I'll switch over to my book instead!
4. Practice Gratitude
I'll be honest, this has been something I've wanted to start forever and just haven't been able to make the habit stick. Gratitude is something that we all need more of in our life. So many of us are constantly thinking about what we don't have instead of appreciating what we do.
This process can be super simple: keep a small notebook or journal beside your bed and either when you wake up in the morning or before you go to bed, write down three things that you're grateful for. They don't have to be self-love related; they can be anything from, “I'm grateful for my warm bed” to “I'm grateful for a fridge of healthy food” and everything in between.
This practice can really help shift your lacking mindset into one of appreciation and ultimately self-love.
Do you practice self-love?
We'd love to hear from you! What sort of things have you incorporated into your life that help you have more self-love and positivity? Let's open up this conversation and try to help each other feel good about ourselves!