Loving yourself for who you are is so much easier said than done. And with millennials being the generation most predisposed to perfectionism, thanks to social platforms like Instagram, the notion of self-love has never been more important.
A whole new wave of inspirational influencers are finally setting the record straight and teaching us how we can love ourselves in a realistic way – and it all starts with a little bit of self-care.
From using social media in a more healthy way to setting yourself boundaries, 7 empowering women reveal how to accept your flaws and do your thing when it comes to your well-being.
We’ve put together their inspiring tips and the simple life changes you can make to help you feel like you, but better.
1. Felicity Hayward – “Aspire to be the best version of yourself, not someone else.”
Inspirational plus-size model Felicity Hayward, the pioneer behind digital movement #SelfLoveBrings Beauty, believes the key to self-love is taking a break from the online world. She says, “We are all constantly absorbed in our mobile phones and it’s important to take that break from your notifications and have some time for yourself.”
And despite having over 190k followers on Instagram, the blonde beauty understands that ‘likes’ don’t mean everything.
“When out at dinner with friends, we put all of our phones upside down in the middle of the table, first one to check their phone pays the bill. It’s important to remember organic interaction when you spend time with ones you love.”
2. Sophie King/Soki London – ‘Be your own number 1 fan’
London-based blogger and model Sophie King, the talented young woman behind lifestyle blog Soki London, aims to help her 17k followers ‘squeeze the juice out of life’.
But what is her secret to staying so grounded and happy among all the chaos? The beauty and travel enthusiast focuses on positive ‘self-talk’, saying,
“We will happily call ourselves overweight or criticise our hair, but we are talking in a way we would never speak to someone else. Why have lower standards for yourself? If you wouldn’t say it to someone else, then don’t say it to yourself!”
And as for incorporating self-care into her every day, Sophie uses her morning routine to focus on her goals for the day ahead.
3. Amelia Goodhead – “Be patient with yourself and learn to appreciate the person you are in this moment.”
With 27k followers on her vlog, luxury lifestyle blogger Amelia is adored for her dreamy travel, beauty and food content. But despite her life seeming picture-perfect, the London-based influencer relies on self-care to keep her happiness in check.
One of her go-to ways to feel centred and less stressed is writing lists, “Start by emptying your mind onto paper then narrow things down a little more, you’ll be amazed at what comes out!”
And even if it’s just for 20 minutes a day, the YouTuber relies on walking to help ease her stress levels. “Get outside. Breathe in that fresh air and let the natural light hit your face, it’s fantastic for your mind and body.”
4. Abbie Nicole – “Once we are at peace with ourselves the world becomes a much brighter place and we become happier people.”
Plus size babe and beauty blogger Abbie Nicole insists the secret to loving yourself simply starts with pen and paper. The mental health advocate suggests writing down 10 positive things about yourself into a pocket-sized notebook you can carry around with you.
“Cover all different aspects, from your appearance, personality, traits and things you’re great at. You can refer back to them every single day or when you’re not feeling your best.”
We’re all so used to pointing out the things we don’t like about ourselves but counteracting negative thoughts with positive ones can really boost your self-esteem.
5. Rachael Sealy/ UKafrolista – “Give yourself permission to be loved, unapologetically with no terms and conditions!”
Rachael Sealy, founder of afro-beauty and women’s empowerment blog Ukafrolista, abides by one simple rule when it comes to self-care – ‘treat yourself’.
And while she’s not suggesting to spend your whole pay check at once, the body positivity advocate ensures you shouldn’t rely on someone else to make you happy. “Treat yourself to a spa day or even a date night. Eat out somewhere new, get a massage or manicure. Do something that will make you feel pampered and loved.”
And even though she has over 26,000 followers on Instagram, she isn’t letting the social media world take over. “I only follow accounts I want to, not that I feel I need to. This allows me to maintain what I see and what is feeding my mind.”
But how can you take on her mantra? “Each month, unfollow those who no longer inspire you and find someone else who does. Don’t take anything as too literal.”
6. Kiri Nowak – “Self-love should be the single most important goal in your life”
Mental wellness and lifestyle blogger Kiri Nowak, who admits to suffering with anxiety herself, advises young women to challenge negative thoughts in order to love themselves.
“If you think something bad might happen stop and ask yourself ‘do I have any evidence that this is actually true?’ In a lot of instances these worries are lies that [we] dream up in [our] world of worry.” And just like Felicity, she thinks it’s important to take some time out from the online world.
“I’m currently trying to read a book in bed instead of scrolling Instagram, reading helps to distract my mind from those sneaky end of the day worries.”
7. Elizabeth Dhokia – “Self-care needs to be holistic, it is physical, mental and spiritual.”
Wellness blogger Elizabeth Dhokia, who has been discussing the topic of self-love for a decade now, focuses on the idea of setting boundaries.
“Being a nice person doesn’t mean you need to be a walk over. Decide what you are, and not, willing to do for people. It’s perfectly acceptable to walk away from a relationship if someone crosses a boundary with you.”
Which also goes hand in hand with her life mantra of ‘be kind to yourself’. Why not set yourself your own mantra that you can stick to everyday?
Whether you incorporate more ‘you’ time in your daily routine or simply use your phone less when you’re out with your friends, these influencers are proving that sometimes you just need to put yourself and your inner happiness first and the rest will follow.