14 Feb 2019 26 comments

Let’s Talk… Self Care & Falling In Love With You.

How I became happier in my skin…

Although I didn’t really plan to post this around Valentine’s, it seems fitting somehow – a little reminder for my gals to partake in a bit of self-love! I’m all about being good to yourself, and in the last year I’ve been really trying to practice what I preach when it comes to loving and looking after myself.

I’ve changed a lot in my late twenties, I’ve gone from being someone who wasn’t really happy in their own skin, to someone who feels confident and empowered, and I think now I have a very healthy relationship with myself. I am who I am, my body is functioning and serves a purpose and I am knowledgable and willing to learn, and above all else, I’m a good person and my family and friends love me for that.
I don’t want to be someone who is first and foremost pretty; there is, and always has been, so much more to me than that. To focus on something that doesn’t do me justice is futile.

When I was writing this post I thought about how far I’d come in the last few years, and the things I’d tell my younger self if I had the chance. I sometimes wish I could go back in time and shake myself out of the bad cloud I was under, but instead I can hopefully impart some of my wisdom on to you wonderful people – so here we go…

On Being Happy With My Appearance

A few years ago I would rarely get my photo taken, I wasn’t a big fan of how I looked and the whole experience made me anxious. Not ideal when you’re a blogger, lemme tell you!
Nonetheless, I persevered – I didn’t want to be upset by my appearance; I wanted to remember happy moments and enjoy seeing photos of Jordan and I, of me and my friends. Oddly enough, if there’s one thing that has helped me feel happier in my skin, it’s becoming more confident in front of the camera!
These days I’m so used to seeing myself in photos that I just see my face, I don’t really attach any emotions to it or fixate on anything. It’s like when you look at a photo of a friend, compared to how you look at a picture of yourself – with a friend, you just see your friend. You don’t hone in on the bits you don’t like about yourself – you just recognise a person you know.
This is something that just came with time, or maybe age, I learned to focus on the positives – I started smiling more in photos (and in life!) and taking more photos for myself, not just with the intention to post on Instagram.

Of course, I made some lifestyle changes too – I got in to a routine with going to the gym, started eating better and just generally made choices that would be better for me in the long run, and it’s all done wonders for how I feel about myself on the whole. I think a positive attitude helps in all areas of your life, you’ll be surprised at what you attract with a good outlook.

On Being Kind To Myself

There is something in being nicer to yourself (and um, other people!), it really does impact the way you feel about and see yourself. I used to look in the mirror and silently point out my blemishes or hangups – without even noticing that I was doing it! – and it really didn’t do a lot for my self-esteem… funnily enough.
Now I try to pick out things I love about myself; my eyes look bright, my hair is shiny, I have a dimple when I smile. Little things that make me, me.
I don’t put myself down online or to my friends either – I remember a time a friend was complaining about a body hangup to me (something totally insignificant!) and I thought “wait, mine is way worse… I’ve never been concerned about that before, should I be?!” it was like the anxiety was contagious. It changed things for me, and now I try to always focus on being good to myself.

On The Ol’ Self-Comparison Conundrum

I am very thankful that I never really give in to feeling down because I’m comparing myself to people on the internet; I know enough to know that not everyone’s life is as it seems, even the most perfect girls will no doubt have something going on behind the scenes.
Saying that, there have, over the years, been girls that haven’t made me feel good about myself – I know it’s not their fault, but if I’ve ever felt like someone’s elses content isn’t bringing me joy, I’ve simply unfollowed. Life is definitely too short to be dealing with irrational envy, your Instagram feed should only inspire you and fill you with joy!

On Surrounding Myself With People Who Love Me

If there’s one thing I am proud of, it’s my friendship circle. I’ve put a lot of time and effort in to my friendships and I think it shows. I really fine-tuned my relationships in my twenties and I learnt a lot from it; I cut out people who made me feel unhappy or unsafe, and now I keep a tight circle of very close friends who I can trust completely.
As soon as I realised I could completely be myself around the people in my life – and not just a watered down version of myself, the full weirdo that I am – I felt like I could truly relax and embrace the who I am.

My friends and I fully support each other; we motivate each other when we need it, celebrate each other’s successes, and we’re there when things don’t quite work out either. We know we’re human and capable of failing, we’re understanding if someone isn’t being their usual self and we try to work through difficult times together.
I never feel like I’m walking on eggshells with them and I know they have my back completely. I feel carefree and secure because of it.

Honestly, it’s a bit of a journey this whole self-love thing, but it’s doable – and totally essential! I can’t believe how far I’ve come in the last few years, I feel like a brand new person.
What are some of your self-love rituals? I’d love to hear how you look after and love yourself…

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  • Your friends sound wonderful! What a beautiful post and you’re right, perfectly fitting on Valentine’s Day.

    Deanna | luxandvitae.com

    • Thanks Deanna, what better way to spend it than honouring your friends! I feel so lucky x

  • Self love ♥️and care is the greatest gift to ourselves. Love your post.

    🌸🍃ROSES FOR FRIDAYS 🌸🍃| by mia | A Creative Lifestyle Blog

  • Self love and self care are so important but so overlooked by most people. I find mental self care has become even more important now that I have two kids and barely any sanity or time left for myself. Glad you’ve made great strides to love yourself, because it’s not always easy!

    Angela at Blush & Pearls

    • You’re totally right, especially as you are a mum you must have all the necessary tasks welded into your routine that you forget to take time out for you – it’s too easily done. Self care can come in small doses too so you can build it up and up. Thank you, it has been a long road of twists and turns, but I am there now eventually. x

  • This isn’t so important I think self love is number one thing and something I am learning to do.

    Candice | NatalyaAmour.com

    • Hey Candice, it’s definitely one of the best things to do for yourself! Takes a bit of practise and getting used to but I’m sure once you find your own rhythm with it, it will be a breeze and you will totally feel the benefits!

  • I’m all for self-love and care! It’s something I’ve definitely struggled a lot with, like many other woman. It’s a learning experience and something you get better the older and wiser you get. I’m with you with wishing it was possible to go back in time and say a few words to your younger and in my case so much more emotional self.

    Happy Valentine’s Day!
    Juliana | Ohhjuliana

    • Hi Juliana, it definitely is a journey isn’t it. Some days, all it takes for me is a few candles and a bubble bath! Absolutely, I think a lot of women these days would agree!

  • Self care is so important. I can totally relate on not wanting your photo taken in the past – I still struggle with accepting how I look like… but I’m learning to embrace it and not get so obsessed about it.

    Zoey | https://www.zoeyolivia.com

    • Hi Zoey! It was honestly such a struggle for me at the time and I’m so glad that I don’t feel half as bad as I did at the time. Embracing you in your own skin at any age can be such a struggle, especially in today’s digital age which is plagued with totally unattainable beauty standards!

  • I completely agree that when you see a picture of someone you love you don’t overanalyse them, so why do we overanalyse ourselves? I’m working hard to accept all pictures of me, rather than focusing on the things I think are wrong in it. Lovely post <3 x

    samanthafrances.co.uk

    • Hey Samantha, it’s bizarre isn’t it? Negative thinking can really snowball if you don’t get ahead of it quick enough! Glad you enjoyed reading the post. x

  • Such a lovely and positive post to read Kate, I’m definitely on a journey of self-love and when I look back at my teens I feels sad for how I felt about myself! I think age plays a massive part in it all
    jodiemelissa.com

    • Hey Jodie, I totally agree, I feel bad about how harsh I can be on myself sometimes. I’m trying way harder to give myself mini compliments, even it’s just for putting a wash on that day!

  • Loved this post. I feel like everyone compares themselves to someone. It’s so unhealthy yet we all do it! Especially with social media. I completely agree we should be focusing on ourselves not wishing to be like others ❤️

    Arianna | Southernbelleforever.com

    • Here, here! Couldn’t agree more, I can’t wait for self-care to become everyones new habit. What a healthier world we would live in! x

  • Loved this post so much <3 Yes, we all fall into that unhealthy cycle of comparing ourselves to others, but at the end of the day, self-love is so important! Thanks for this little reminder, especially today of all days! Happy Valentine's Day to you as well!

    XO, Elizabeth T.
    http://clothestoyouuu.com

    • Hi Elizabeth. You couldn’t have out it better, comparing yourself to others can be so toxic! Happy Valentines to you too and I’m glad you liked the post! x

  • Such a lovely post! Thanks for sharing. Xx
    https://www.thoughtsinstyle.com/

    • Thanks for commenting! So glad you liked it. x

  • This post was super inspirational, thank you for sharing!!
    Miki x

    http://littletasteofbeauty.blogspot.com/

  • This post couldn’t come at a better time. I started a 14day self love challenge on Valentine’s Day and I’m planning on blogging about it after. It’s very new to me and I need all the tips on how to love myself as I feel I kind of love myself less than before and this post gave me exactly that! Love it x

    Kristen
    The Social Unicorn | https://thesocialunicorn.co.za/

  • I absolutely loved this post<3 So glad you're loving yourself and feeling more confident in your own skin. I know what you mean about the whole photo thing. When you take photos of yourself, it's hard not to judge, but it's so unhealthy! When I'm 80 years old, I know I'll be thankful for the photos I took. So I don't want to be too harsh on myself and not keep a photo of my friends and I, simply because I'm not crazy about how I look in it in the moment.

    http://www.lifeslittlemusings.com

  • Each year that I get further into my twenties the more content I’m becoming. I’m so glad to be over those horrible teenage years filled with self doubt!

    http://www.thejessicalife.com