Happy Valentine’s Day Beautiful Souls!!  On this holiday, so often we begin to think about all the special things that we want to do for the people we love in our life.

When in recovery, it is equally and even MORE important to remember to take extra special care of yourself and actively practice LOVING YOURSELF!!

Here are 6 ways that you can take action to love on yourself this holiday:

1. Take yourself on a dinner date.

When I was early on in recovery, this was no only awkward but incredibly uncomfortable!!  I didn’t know how to sit with myself, let alone eat out by myself.  The first time I went to a restaurant by myself, I kept looking around thinking that everyone was looking at me.  I was very self conscious, and it took some time and practice for me to really get comfortable with my own self and company.

Practice dating yourself!  When we are in recovery, one of the biggest fears I hear from women in letting it go is that– “I don’t know who I am without the ED.”  To overcome this fear, pretend that you are dating yourself!  Just like when you meet or are dating someone new, what would you do?  You would spend time alone with them, ask them questions to get to know them better, and inquire about what is most important to them.  I invite you to do the same thing with yourself!  Use journal prompt questions to ask yourself about your passions, your loves, your emotional wounds, hurts, and beliefs about life.  Get to know yourself better so that you can begin to fall in love with yourself and become your own best friend.

This Valentine’s Day, treat yourself to something nice.  Go out to dinner and take your journal with you.  Sit with yourself and build your relationship with yourself.  Even if it is uncomfortable, this is a great act of self love for yourself.

2. Hot bath

I sometimes underestimate the value of radical self care.  At the end of a long day or week, one of my favorite things to do is soak in a hot bath with some kind of luxurious scented Epsom or Bath Salts.  It is a powerful way to cleanse your aura, relieve stress and clear your mind.  Putting on some relaxing music or lighting a candle during it is also an amazing healing ritual and a wonderful way to love and take care of your energy and physical body.

3. Self Massage

This is one of my favorite things to do!  I use a high quality massage oil, pure almond oil or organic lotion to do a self massage on myself when I am in need of it.  My most needed place that I do self massage is typically on my feet!  They get so sore from all the activity I do and I have high arches, so it feels really good to do a deep massage with my hands or rolling on a golf ball.

Breast massage is also a very healing ritual!  Our heart is connected to our breasts and can be a powerful way to release emotions, relax and give love to ourselves.  Here is one of my favorite instructional videos on how to do this: Breast Massage Routine

Self massage is one of the best ways to release tension fast and is another way you can love on yourself this Valentine’s Day.

4. Mirror work

This is a powerful tool to begin to deepen the connection you have with yourself and your soul.  Standing in front of a mirror or holding a hand mirror close to your face, look into your own eyes.  Make eye contact with yourself.  Holding your gaze, begin to speak to yourself kindly, lovingly.

Say to yourself, “I love you, I really really love you!  You are the most beautiful woman in the world.  You deserve all of the happiness and love you desire.  I am truly grateful for you, you can create anything your heart desires!!”

Allow yourself to drop down into your heart center and begin to evoke deep feelings of love and gratitude for yourself.  Imagine your heart expanding and radiating out love first surrounding your body and then see if you can extend it out to take up space in the room.  Radiate this love pouring out from your heart, and feel what it feels like to truly love yourself.

Remember this is a practice, so if at first it feels awkward or difficult, that is normal!  For most women it takes some time to build up this connection with Self and begin to deeply and completely love and accept yourself.  This Valentine’s Day, do a couple of rounds of loving affirmations focusing intently on how it FEELS to love yourself.

5. Write a love letter to yourself

What better practice to do this Valentine’s Day then writing yourself a love letter!  Buy yourself a pretty card, or find some pretty paper to write on.  Begin by writing, “Dear ______,” and then write all of the wonderful things you can think of about yourself.  For example:

“Dear Lauren,

You are the most amazing woman ever!  What I love most about you is your passion and drive and your willingness to work on yourself to overcome your struggles.  You are a wonderful mother, a powerful coach and I admire your desire to help and serve others from such a loving place.  You can accomplish anything you put your mind to!  I believe in you. I love you.

Love,

Lauren”

What I love to do is write these little love notes to myself and then hide them in places I will find later.  What a fun surprise when I come across and open my love notes to myself!  This Valentine’s Day, be intentional and write out the many things that you can learn to love and appreciate about yourself.

6. Create a vision board on Self Love

Vision boards are a wonderful visual representation of your goals and dreams.  What you can do is create a Vision Board on loving yourself!  You can purchase a large canvas, posterboard or just use a large piece of construction paper, and collect magazines that you can clip things out of.  Make sure the magazines you are cutting things out of are from wholesome magazines (not overly focused on body/superficial shit), and if you don’t have any you can simply look up images online and print them out.

Collect images, colors, patterns, words and quotes that inspire you and are representative of what you want to create in your life.  Arrange them on your board and then what you can do is type or write out your commitment to loving yourself and put it in the very center.  Display your vision board where you will see it every day and remind yourself that loving yourself is one of the most important things you can do for yourself each and every day.

I hope you enjoyed these 6 things you can do today to LOVE YOURSELF– now choose one and go DO IT!!  These are not only important now, but each and every one of these self love activities can become a part of your regular self love practices and routines over time.

Let me know how it goes and which one is your favorite, enjoy!!!

Sending SO much love and healing energy your way beautiful soul.  And remember– THIS is the way towards FREEDOM.

In light + love,

LAUREN LOVE

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