Who knows why, but Hollywood star Anne Hathaway has long been a magnet for online hatred. People hate her hair, her voice, the roles she takes, her style, her mannerisms, you name it. For years, the Oscar winner and mother of two struggled with the barrage of criticism—until she realised you need to love yourself first if you want anyone else to do it too.
She put it beautifully and simply: “If you don’t love yourself, when someone says horrible things to you, a part of you is always going to believe them. So I was like, ‘I don’t want to believe these people. I want to figure out who I am. I don’t want to feel like I’m fragile every time I leave the house because I’m so dependent on what people think about me.’
While Hathaway said the process wasn’t easy and she still sometimes struggles, now “I feel I’ve arrived in a place where I have a tremendous amount of love and compassion for everyone else. And best of all, I have it for myself.”
Truth is, self-love is a crucial aspect of mental and emotional health. It involves recognising and accepting our best qualities and our flaws, treating ourselves with compassion and kindness, and valuing ourselves. Here’s 7 reasons why it’s important to love yourself:
- Better relationships. If you love yourself, you’re more likely to have healthy relationships with others. If you have self-love and self-acceptance, you’re less likely to be manipulated or controlled by others or to tolerate toxic relationships. Loving yourself sets a positive example for others to follow and is the foundation for strong relationships. Our connection with others is only as deep and solid as our connection with ourselves.
- Increased self-esteem. When you love yourself, you’re more likely to chase your goals, take risks and strive for personal growth and development because your self-esteem—your belief in your own abilities and worth—is boosted. You’re more likely to find your sense of purpose and pursue passions and interests which lead to fulfilment and happiness.
- Better mental health. Research shows people who love and accept themselves are less likely to experience negative self-talk or experience depression, anxiety and low self-esteem. Loving yourself helps you feel more secure and confident, which can lead to improved mental health.
- Increased resilience. People who love themselves are better able to handle life’s challenges. They’re less likely to be discouraged by failures, are able to see obstacles as opportunities and are more likely to bounce back from setbacks.
- Improved creativity. When you love yourself, you’re more likely to be open to new experiences and express your unique perspective and ideas at home and work without worrying about what others will think. This will give you a sense of freedom and satisfaction.
- Better physical health. If you love yourself, you’re more likely to avoid harmful behaviours like substance abuse and more likely to follow healthy ones: regular exercise, nutrition, proper sleep, consistent self-care.
- A stronger self-understanding. Loving yourself can lead to greater self-awareness and personal growth because you’re more likely to explore your thoughts, feelings and motivations.
Self-love is an essential component of a healthy and fulfilling life which enables you to lean into life wholeheartedly and with confidence.
Be Curious. Be Courageous. Be YOU! Because YOU are worth it!
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