While Valentine’s Day is about romance, one of the most important relationships is that which we have with ourselves. It’s critically important to show ourselves some love so that we can show love to those around us.

According to the Brain & Behavior Research Foundation, “Self-love is a state of appreciation for oneself that grows from actions that support our physical, psychological and spiritual growth. Self-love means having a high regard for your own well-being and happiness. Self-love means taking care of your own needs and not sacrificing your well-being to please others. Self-love means not settling for less than you deserve.”

But why is self love so important?
Practicing self love not only can reduce stress, anxiety and depression, but it opens us up and gives us more energy to focus on others. It can also create a greater sense of satisfaction with one’s life, thereby reducing our dependence on others and increasing the value we put on ourselves.

Focusing on ourselves with love can help to foster successful relationships and enable us show our love to others. It can provide us with strength in knowing who we are, and it helps us to set healthy boundaries.

How to love yourself.
Start with a few basic practices:
Get a massage
Listen to music
Reduce or eliminate negative self talk
Nourish your body with healthy food
Stretch your mind and body with yoga
Take a warm bath
Unplug for an hour or two
Write in a journal
Loving ourselves supports our physical, spiritual and emotional well-being. The bottom line, according to PhychCentral.com? “Self-love means that you accept yourself fully, treat yourself with kindness and respect, and nurture your growth and well-being.”