If you’re like me and tend to reflect on life, whether you’re reflecting on the past day, week, month or even year, there will come a point where you realise that huh doing that would’ve improved my life so much. I find that when I start thinking this way my mind continues with that downward spiral and I become self-critical of the way I’ve lived my life up to this point.
This is in huge contrast to the fact that I enjoy reading self-help books which all in a way link to the idea of self-acceptance, self-love and self-confidence, in all forms. They teach about ways to start loving yourself and becoming a better version of you. Though this is an idea that I tend to preach to my closest friends, it’s something I’ve struggled with a lot myself, in that knowing that I need to love and accept myself means I’m not already doing that which equals failure.
Instead, I’ve decided to take a step back and look at ways to improve myself so that I can get to that stage of self-acceptance and self-love.
“You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection” – Buddha
Do something that scares you – this may seem like an unusual one in the context of self-improvement, but the idea behind it is to move out of your comfort zone and challenge yourself so that you can grow. Finding little ways regularly that will help you away from your little bubble will help you understand yourself better, you can analyse your responses to certain situations and work on improving that.
Read more – this is pretty much a no-brainer, reading is the easiest and most accessible way to expand your mind, to gain new knowledge and perspectives on literally anything, from world events to emotions, to science and art. This something I prefer over obtaining knowledge through courses for example, because of the fact that books are everywhere. I made a post on reading more, where I spoke about accessing books through your local library via an app on your phone/tablet.
Listen to podcasts – this is by far my most favourite way to improve myself recently, I find that podcasts are more personal than books in that you’re essentially part of a conversation, either between people or yourself and one other person and it’s a great way to put yourself in another person’s shoes and look at their own perspective.
Have deeper conversations with people – this would definitely be put under the list of something that scares me, having deep conversations with friends/family is an intimate way to connect to them, to understand their perspectives and in a way release stressors (essential human coping strategy) that have been affecting you. Though having deep conversations isn’t something I do often enough, I find that after I’m always inspired and happier, it touches my heart.
Practice mindfulness – if you’ve been reading my posts for a while you’ll know that I’m a huge advocate for mindfulness, the idea of being in the present moment, of being aware of what’s happening around you and being able to fully immerse yourself in that. There are many ways to practice this, you could try keeping a gratitude list or journal, meditating for a few minutes either in the morning or evening, being active and doing a yoga flow. It could even be as simple as looking around and picking out what’s happening around you.
This is a finite list of ways you could improve yourself, I have many more ideas in mind so let me know in the comments below if you’d like to see a part 2 in the future!!
“Remind yourself that you cannot fail at being yourself” – Wayne Dyer.
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