The first step to self-care is deciding you matter. You deserve to feel confident. You deserve to feel loved. You deserve to feel whole.
You have to stop telling yourself that it doesn’t matter what you do with your time because no one cares anyway. At the very least, you have to care. After all, you’re the only one who matters.
If other people aren’t paying attention to you, aren’t supporting you, aren’t loving you, that’s outside of your control. The only thing you can control is our own actions, your own thoughts, your own choices.
The first step to self-care is actually giving a shit. It’s deciding that you care about where your career is headed. You care about whether your friendships are stable. You care about what happens to your heart. You care about whether you get enough exercise that day, whether you eat enough that day, whether you take care of your hygiene that day. You care about yourself.
If you don’t care about yourself, if you continue to believe that you are worthless and aren’t going to make it so there’s no point in even trying, then you’re going to get caught in a self-destructive cycle. You’re never going to take a chance on yourself. You’re going to keep coming up with excuses to stay hidden inside your comfort zone. You’re never going to change.
It’s a pretty simple concept. If you don’t care about yourself, you’re not going to take good care of yourself. You’re going to stop trying. You’re going to let yourself waste away. And you cannot let that happen. You cannot forget your worth. You cannot treat yourself so unkindly.
Maybe you’re unable to love yourself right now because you’re distracted by your flaws. Or maybe you made a mistake you consider unforgivable and can’t stop thinking about the past. Or maybe you’re just in a toxic mindset right now.
If learning to love yourself sounds like too big of a leap from where you are right now, you can start by learning to give a shit about yourself.
You don’t have to love your body yet, but you should give a shit about keeping it clean and healthy. You don’t have to love your job yet, but you should give a shit about whether you’re doing the right thing at work. You don’t have to love your life yet, but you should give a shit about continuing it, strengthening it, bettering it.
It’s not going to be easy to change the way you think. It’s not going to be easy to suddenly start giving a shit about yourself after years of not caring at all — but it might be a little bit easier than suddenly loving yourself unconditionally.
Give a shit about whether you make healthy decisions that day.
Give a shit about whether you compliment yourself that day.
Give a shit about whether you’re in a good mood that day.
Give a shit about yourself, because honestly, that’s the biggest step you can ever take toward loving yourself.