Self love is like feminism, sexism or minimalistic lifestyle, where there is a lot of fodder, everyone talks about it but no one has the patience or time to understand what it means. We often misread self-love for being self-centred, self obsessed or maybe an egoistic maniac who just doesn’t care for the world as long as he/she is happy?

This is clearly not the case. Self love is not ONLY about you.

Self-love is humble, enriching and endearing. Self-love has got nothing to do with self-obsession, self-praises or being a narcissist. It’s more about trusting, understanding your conscience, nourishing your beliefs and nurturing your capabilities.

Lord Buddha extracted the crux of it by saying, “You, yourself, as much as anybody else in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.”

While the idea of self-love is different for each individual, but these 10 points will tell you why you should even bother practising it.

1. Do What You Love

Pursue and do what you love and whatever that makes you feel alive. It is probably the greatest gift you can give yourself. Respect and value your dreams, passions and ambitions. Chase them with all the enthusiasm and vigour.

2. Wear Your Personality

Even though science says one has as many as 7 doppelgangers’, but no one can actually hijack an individual’s personality because everyone is his/her own master. Every individual is gifted with special traits and a unique and different personality. Acknowledge, feel confident and wear every bit of your personality every day. One should not fear of what others think; just celebrate your slightly different persona.

3. Feel Free, Accept Yourself

Self-love is not about putting yourself above all but to love yourself above everything, and accepting yourself in all circumstances. Being open and compassionate towards your own self and enjoying one’s true worth (despite all the flaws) wholeheartedly is what that counts.

4. Pamper Yourself

“Date yourself. Take yourself out to eat. Don’t share your popcorn at the movies with anyone. Stroll around an art museum alone. Fall in love with canvases. Fall in love with yourself.” —Anonymous

Flatter yourself, indulge in the things you love and become your own best friend. One should feel secure and seek happiness on your own. The love, respect and worth one associates with other beings can be achieved by simply doing the same for oneself.

5. Be Gentle, Judge Yourself, But Don’t Go Overboard

One doesn’t need validation, approval or any kind of authentication from oneself. From the mechanic and shopkeeper to the random cabbie and the watchman, everyone out there is watching as well as judging you, the least one can do is not hop on to the bandwagon and be one’s own critic. Believe in the fact you are good. Believe in self-worth. Don’t become your biggest critic.

6. Accept Reality

Running away from reality will get you nowhere. To accept reality, one needs to open up fully and be true to themselves; love the imperfections and faults. Memories, good or bad, cannot be erased. One needs to be even with reality because that’s the only way how you can move ahead.

7. Don’t Pity Yourself

An essential part of self-love is not tying yourself down, not blaming yourself and most importantly, not feeling apologetic for anything that has gone wrong. If it has gone wrong, believe the power in you; chin up, know your calibre and walk ahead. Self-pity is the worst that can hit anyone.

8. Don’t Punish Yourself

Who doesn’t mess up things? Everyone does, but the real deal comes in when you accept that the damage is done and decide to let bygones be bygones. It is easier to forgive others than oneself. So don’t ponder over things or fiddle with your sanity.

9. Start Expecting From Yourself

Why would you want someone else to come and make you happy? Set targets and personal goals for yourself, work furiously towards them and meet those expectations. Accomplishing a task that you truly believed in will make you feel gratified.

10. Express Thyself

Don’t feel ashamed to call a spade a spade. Feel confident; express yourself in the truest way possible because that what makes you who you are. Leave no place for an iota of doubt.

Eat, what your palette desires, love yourself endlessly and pray for the best.