It Is Selfish to Love Yourself?
Many people shy away from self-love. They think they don’t deserve love, or they think that giving themselves affection is selfish. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Loving yourself is not selfish. It’s imperative. Here are some of the most critical reasons you need to love yourself.
Life is a gift.
Your life is God’s gift to you. God made you in his image, and he loves how you are. Loving yourself shows God that you appreciate the gift of your life. You deserve love and respect — not just from others but from yourself.
Loving yourself helps you love others.
Loving yourself is not selfish because it opens the door to loving other people. When people don’t love or accept themselves, they are often very critical of other people. They’re always analyzing their own flaws, and by extension, they tend to notice other people’s flaws.
When you give yourself unconditional love, this pattern changes. You become less critical and more loving of other people. You see the good things in yourself, and you start to notice the good things in other people as well. You become kinder and more forgiving.
You become more confident.
People who love themselves notice their positive attributes. They understand their strengths, but they also acknowledge their weaknesses. They know they are not perfect, but they’re still proud of who they are.
Having these feelings about yourself makes you more confident. When you can stand in the bathroom and look at yourself in the mirror with affection rather than judgment, you walk taller. You become more confident. You become better prepared for life’s challenges.
Change becomes easier.
Although it may seem counterintuitive, self-love is critical if you want to make changes in your life. People who don’t love themselves often just see themselves as bad. They assume this is just who they are, and they think they can’t change.
People who love themselves are aware that they have flaws, but they don’t seek to punish themselves for their flaws. Instead, they embrace a growth mindset. They look for ways to change so that they can grow as a person. They want the best for themselves.
Self-love leads to better boundaries.
When people don’t love themselves, they may put themselves at risk. They may subject themselves to toxic behavior or relationships because they subconsciously think that they deserve these relationships. When you love yourself, you expect other people to treat you with kindness and respect.
You become more likely to notice when things are wrong in a relationship or an interaction. You set healthy boundaries. This allows you to live a happier and more emotionally healthy life.
You take better care of yourself.
When people don’t love themselves, they don’t take care of themselves. In contrast, self-love leads to self-nurturing. Think of the other people you love. You want them to be safe and comfortable. In that same vein, when you love yourself, you want yourself to be safe and comfortable.
By extension, you end up taking better care of yourself. When you love yourself, for example, you know that you need to eat a healthy breakfast and get a good night’s sleep. Although that may not always be possible when you’re juggling a busy life, you’re more likely to make good decisions when you love yourself.
In contrast, people who don’t love and respect themselves often make bad decisions. They may drink too much, avoid exercise, or engage in destructive behavior.
Self-love gives you more time and energy.
When you love and take care of yourself, you often end up with more energy. By loving yourself, you create a reality where you have more time and energy for other people. Because of this, self-love is not selfish. It’s often the first step to improving your relationship with your family, friends, co-workers, and other people in your life.
Self-love isn’t about expensive spa days or taking countless photos of yourself. Instead, it’s about accepting yourself and giving yourself kindness. This, in turn, helps you be kinder and more compassionate to the people around you.
Loving yourself can also help to strengthen your relationship with God. If you don’t love yourself, you will have a hard time truly loving God or others. As 1 John 4:8 says,
“Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.”