What is self-love? While many can describe what self-love is, they don’t understand how to put self-love into practice.
Self-love is not just about loving how you look in your favorite outfit, but how you feel and how you nourish your body, mind, and soul.
Learning to love yourself is difficult challenge. We tend to put everyone first and ourselves last. Society even tells us that caring for ourselves and thinking of ourselves first is “selfish.”
But how can you continue to care for others with such great love when you can’t love yourself?
Let’s start your self-love journey with these 30 days of journal prompts for self-love and healing!
What Is Self-love?
The Brain and Behavior Research Foundation describes self-love as “an appreciation for oneself” that grows through physical, mental, and spiritual growth.
Self-love not looking in the mirror and liking what you see. It’s loving yourself from the inside out and cultivating that love with activities and decisions to keep it blooming.
What Does Self-love Look Like?
Self-love is about staying true to you are at the core of your being. Therefore, self-love should not be confused with self-care.
Self-care includes daily activities that need to be completed to take care of your body and mind.
Activities like showering, brushing your teeth, washing your face and more are examples of self-care.
Although these self-care activities are encompassed in what self-love is, here are some more examples of self-love to help you get a better understanding.
Self-love looks like…
- Forgiving past and present errors or failures
- Saying positive things about yourself
- Asking for help
- Being assertive when you need to be
- Setting boundaries with people in your life
- Accepting who you are flaws and all
- Challenging yourself and holding yourself accountable
Why Do You Need To Practice Self-love?
The more you love yourself, the higher you value yourself. With higher value comes a lower tolerance for accepting defeat and accepting inappropriate behaviors from others toward you.
Those who practice self-love are less likely to allow themselves to be used or abused by others.
One key component to self-love is setting boundaries. Boundaries are our way of “putting our foot down” and not accepting behavior from others you do not want to tolerate.
If someone is pushing your boundaries and going against how you want to be treated or your belief system, you have every right to say no without feeling guilty.
Implementing boundaries with those around you lowers your likelihood of tolerating abuse from others.
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30 Journal Prompts For Self-love And Healing
1. Make a list of five things that make you happy right now
Things that make you happy don’t have to be your friends in family. Look around you and think about what puts a smile on your face.
Your favorite pair of heels? Sunflowers? Anything that picks you up when you’re in a bad mood.
2. How do you know when you’re practicing self-love?
Use this question to explore what self-love means to you and how you can begin to focus more on it to make a routine.
3. What prevents you from really loving yourself, and how can you work to change that?
This is a tough journal prompt! Dive into your inner most feelings and think about what keeps you from fully loving yourself and treating yourself how you should be treated.
Now, ask yourself how are you going to begin to work through that “thing” hindering your self-love.
4. Tell in great detail about a time in your life that ranks among your very best
Remembering the good times from years past can help a current depressing situation seem a little more brighter!
It’s important to look at these past happy memories and think about why they were so happy and what were you doing differently in your life to promote that happiness at the time.
5. When do you feel the most pressure or stressed in life?
Discovering what people, activities, life and work events create stress in your life. Stress triggers are key to figuring out and possibly reducing them.
6. What are your three most pressing concerns?
What is bothering you the most right now in life and what three things are most important? This could be work related issues, children, marriage and more.
7. Describe at least five characteristics that set you apart from others
Look deep inside yourself and reflect on what makes you great! Remember you’re a unique individual and there is no one else like you in the world. So what traits do you possess that make you YOU?
8. Recall a time when you had to overcome adversity and how doing so made you a better person
These type of journal prompts for self-love and healing will help you remember how strong you are!
In our weakest moments in life we tend to forget how we have overcome adversity before. Therefore, you can do it again!
9. Make a list of your top five interests
Hobbies and interests help us remember who we are and what we like to do for fun. Life is not all about just surviving, but enjoying the time we have and filling our lives with joy along the way.
10. Jot down a self-defeating thought. Then write the opposite to counter that belief
Think of the most negative thought you think about yourself, your life, or a particular situation. Then, write down a positive thought to counter that defeating belief.
This exercise is a cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) exercise that helps take your negative feelings and thoughts and conditions your mind to reverse your negative thoughts into positive ones.
11. Describe a goal you’ve never managed to accomplish
This can be more than one goal you haven’t accomplished. Not only should you describe the goal, but think about what stopped you from accomplishing that goal.
12. Do you have any words of wisdom for your younger self?
This could be triggering for some people, especially if you’ve had past trauma experiences in your life. But focus on what words of wisdom you would give your younger self.
13. What do you want others to say to you that they haven’t yet?
Maybe you need a compliment from others to feel good about yourself. Or maybe you just want people to acknowledge how much you are working toward your goals in life.
14. How do you establish appropriate boundaries in your relationships?
This is a tough one, but so important for increasing self-love. Boundaries are hard to establish especially with those closest to you.
But establishing appropriate boundaries is essential for preventing others from walking all over you.
15. What are you holding on to that you need to release?
This could be a very short list or a very long list. It doesn’t matter how many regrets you have. Writing them down is one way of releasing these regrets!
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16. Create ten positive statements about yourself. Now recite them daily!
Positive affirmations are a sure-fire way to turn negative thoughts about yourself into positive one.
Do reframe your thinking, the ten positive statements for yourself need to be recited daily until their not just sayings on a piece of paper, but a way of thinking!
17. Describe in detail your ideal future you envisioned for yourself
Future dreams are hard to hold onto. Over time, those dreams become broken or even shattered by the current events in our life.
While others may hold onto their dreams without falter, other people may change their dreams.
Either way, describing your ideal future gives you goals to work towards in life.
18. What are you currently enthusiastic about?
Talk about what makes you happy right now! This will help you to focus on the positive things in life and how it relates to self-love.
19. Explain your current goals and the “why” behind you are pursuing them
Forget the past! Focus on your future goals and why you want it to come to be.
20. How do you see yourself and your life in the next five years?
Think ahead with the way your life is going now. What direction are you going in? Where do you see yourself in five years from now?
21. When do you have the most self-confidence?
When do you feel the most comfortable, secure, smart or pretty? What makes you gain self-confidence?
22. List three admirable qualities of yourself that you like the most
What do you like most about yourself? This can be hard for some, but think deep on what you like most about yourself and list three of your best qualities.
23. What makes you feel most alive?
When do you feel the happiest? You don’t have to go skydiving to feel alive! Although some do, you could simply feel most alive when laughing with your children.
This question should make you realize how you can appreciate the little things in life and how those little things have a big impact on how you feel.
24. Where in your life do you need to “slow down”?
Life moves fast! Sometimes we get caught in the rush of things. Chasing dreams, money, children and more we forget about enjoying the good moments as they come alone.
Where in your life in particular do you need to slow down to enjoy yourself, family, and your life overall?
25. When have you felt the deepest sense of love?
Love comes in many forms. It doesn’t have to be a significant other in your life.
It could even be a past lover or a deceased family member that provided you with a deep sense of love for them and yourself.
26. What shortcomings and failures do you need to forgive yourself for?
Read this question again! The question is not asking you to list your shortcomings and failures. That’s not what you’re focusing on!
Instead, we are focusing on shortcomings and failures from your past that you need to forgive yourself for.
In other words, by writing down past failures, you are releasing them once and for all and they will no longer control your thought pattern or hold you back from your current and future dreams!
27. What current behaviors are detrimental to your self-love?
Make a list of behaviors that interfere with you loving yourself. What stops you from loving your mind, body, and spirit?
28. How did the darkest moments in your life transform you into the person you are today?
These types of journal prompts for self-love and healing help your transform your thinking!
Instead of thinking and possibly reliving the worst moments in your life, think of those dark moments in a different way.
How did the worst moments of your life transform who you are today as a person? In other words, those dark moments may have helped you to become the amazing person you are today!
29. What is it that you fear the most? What would your life be like if you let go of all your worries?
Everyone is afraid of something. I have a very long list of fears that I am currently working on conquering those fears.
But, what are your day-to-day fears that cause you the most worries? Now, think about how good it would feel to not have those worries anymore!
30. What self-doubts are preventing you from living the life of your dreams?
Negative thought patterns can and will with time destroy the way you see yourself, which is the opposite of self-love.
These types of self-defeating thoughts can stop you from living the life you want to live. Your dream life! What are those doubts?
Self-love is an all-encompassing definition for loving every part of yourself. You accept yourself flaws and all for who you are. Even accept your past failures and your current shortcomings to see yourself in a different light.
With self-love you are no longer a weak or failing individual, you are someone special who has learned from past failures and turned those failures into strength to help reshape the life you have now.
Better yet, those same experiences, traumas, and shortcomings also helped shape you into the person you are today!
After you finish these journal prompts for self-love and healing, I hope you notice yourself thinking more positively, forgiving yourself, and finally accepting yourself as you are and for who you are!
Self-Love and What It Means | Brain & Behavior Research Foundation (bbrfoundation.org)
What is Self-Love and Why Is It So Important? (psychcentral.com)