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Self Love The AFTER Company

Self-Love Through Loss

It comes as no surprise: Valentine's Day is a little less appealing when you are in the throes of grief.

When coping with loss, you’re usually not in the mood to celebrate. Sure, you feel love and want to share that with others, but chances are you’d prefer that to be on your own terms. Being forced to feel something doesn’t go over well with the bereaved, and holidays bring an expectation of happiness that isn’t appreciated when you’re in mourning. When you’re hurting, there’s something off-putting about seeing so many people smiling. Celebrations can feel very “wrong” when you’re coping with the loss of a loved one. After all, something very significant is missing from the picture. 

However, it’s important to remember that you are still here

Practicing self-care and developing a strong sense of self-love is a powerful way to nurture that which remains. It’s easy to let pain and disconnection from others make you cynical, but there is no benefit in letting apathy take the wheel when it comes to loving yourself.

You can do yourself a world of good by turning your Valentine’s Day into inspiration to work on developing your sense of self-love. Don’t beat yourself up for sitting out of traditional festivities! The only person to whom you owe a thing is yourself. Losing a loved one is hell, and it gets in the way of a lot of things – one of those being self-care. Grieving minds scramble easily. In a world upside-down, you can lose sight of what you want and need.

12 Points of Guidance on Self Love

  • It’s hard to listen to yourself when there’s so much mental noise to compete with! Calm the mind through guided meditation. We love this Spotify playlist. If you are easily distracted, light a candle and focus only on the flame.
  • After loss, being sure of your needs may not be as straightforward as you remember. Taking the time to ponder, address, and analyze those needs is an important step in developing your self-care habits.
  • Caring for yourself isn’t just taking baths and getting manicures; it’s valuing and prioritizing what is in your best interest.  Of course, if you want to do this mental exploration in a warm candlelit bath, there’s no harm in that.
  • While caring for yourself isn’t all about pampering, it can be a helpful tool.
  • Permit yourself to feel good. It seems silly, but when you’re grieving this can be challenging. It’s not going to solve all your problems, but there’s nothing wrong with a little indulgence. Maybe it’s time to treat yourself to something special or get that massage you were thinking about.
  • You are alive, and you deserve to love and be loved. It’s an elegant approach to turn that love inward, allowing yourself to reciprocate your own feelings of caring and kindness.
  • Self-love is centered around self-compassion.
  • True, sympathy for others comes much more easily than tenderness for your self. However, in taking the time to focus on what it means to be kind to yourself, you are making a very important step toward strengthening your sense of self-love.
  • Think about those things you may do for others and try to come up with a similar gesture to do for your self. Ponder some sympathy ideas for a friend and note the differences in your desires. What works for you? What doesn’t? What can you do for yourself that would make you feel the most comforted and loved?
  • When you devote attention to your mind and body, you are making yourself a priority. When you prioritize yourself, you are investing in your emotional health. Grief support does not exclude self-support.
  • Becoming more comfortable with your existence in the present is a major part of self-love. This is especially important to those who are grieving, since accepting the present is also a huge part of that process. It can be as difficult as it is important, though, and that’s all the more reason to be kind to yourself.
  • Accept that you are a work in progress and try to embrace that.

All of that to say, don’t fall into the cycle of comparing all the other developing humans to yourself. Allow yourself to be, and make yourself as comfortable as you can in doing that. Take the time to celebrate the work in progress that you are!

Don’t let the heart-shaped candy distract you. What needs the most of your loving attention right now is you

You deserve it.  

We offer you love and light always.

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