Valentine’s Day has come and gone.  The hearts and cupids are packed away until next year, but the real unconditional love for yourself shouldn’t be stored up in a plastic container in the closet.  You should have that self-love out and active every single day! Even if you have to re-introduce yourself to who you really are, so that you can fall in love with yourself for the first time, make the time to do exactly that this spring season.  

Self-love is the key to personal rejuvenation. The events of your life have formed you into who you are, yet the challenging or negative events may have also worn you into guarding your heart so fiercely and forgetting the fragile essence of you.  If the intense doses of life’s medicine have formed your emotional guard into a strong fortress of protection against disappointment, barring any form of pure joy or willingness to explore new terrain, below are five ways to help you revive and renew your lease on self-love!  

#1 Enjoy a cup of tea in silence.  Take the time to savor each warm and inviting sip of comfort as you slow down to enjoy the moment.  Some teas, depending upon variety, do offer an added dimension of a soothing quality (such as chamomile or lemon balm), but it’s really up to you to relish the simplicity of the occasion.  The whole act of slowing down to take in the warm beverage is not about selecting the most expensive tea or stressfully deciding whether or not to go with chai or green! The matter of inhaling the aromatically therapeutic, mood-enhancing liquid for your drinking time provides a quick second of beauty for you to pause and recapture a breath of peace and quiet for a mental recharge.

#2 Take up a new hobby.  Scientists have found that outlets such as hobbies or pastimes restore one’s youthfulness of mind and overall health, and who doesn’t want to turn back the clock to recapture a less stressful time?  There are all sorts of hobbies that may be pursued – from artistic to athletic – but if relaxation through a hobby isn’t your “cup of tea” (see what I just did there?), then you must attempt to unearth something that will provide a balance to your work and personal responsibilities.  Reclaim the time to rediscover your passions; they may ultimately lead you to further creative pursuits and self-appreciation.

#3 Remember what makes you giggle. Maybe even create a new punchline for your life!  Laughter is good for the body and soul. That is the literal truth.  Laughter and humorous memories are stunningly efficient (and inexpensive!) healers for everything from a broken heart to a sore thumb.  According to the Mayo Clinic, the endorphins released during laughter and humorous times light up the centers of your brain that control pain relief. Strong chuckles stimulate your heart, lungs, and muscles, too, and laughter has even been proven to improve your immune system and mood.  Go figure. Sweep away your dusty past cobwebs of mental, emotional and physical fatigue, depression, stress, anxiety and distraction with a little giggle of lighthearted humor – reminding you that life can always take a funny turn.

#4 Spend time outdoors.  Whether you are drawn to hiking, walking, surfing, picking buttercups  (no judgment here) just go for it! It is widely known that the springtime can be a beast on the sinuses for some, but do not allow that to deter you from reaping the wonderful and healing benefits of Mother Nature!  Self love abounds outdoors.

Outdoor sunshine is good for improving mood and general health in the provision of vitamin D, but the potent and uncontained oxygen received while being in a nutrient-rich and unpolluted environment can assist in boosting one’s creativity, concentration, memory and energy.  Nature pumps up your clarity and inspires the freedom of heart, mind, and spirit for you to truly be who your soul strives to become.

#5 Celebrate the fresh springboard of each new day.  Spring is lush and ripe for new beginnings – new birth – yet every single day is a golden opportunity for your renaissance of self-love!  There is no special time to turn things around in your life. May no seemingly insurmountable event brainwash you into believing that you cannot restart.  Each day is the prime time to refresh your situation and flip your mindset and perspective. Use each of your precious days to readjust yourself back to what matters to you and your ultimate wellbeing.   

You have to love and value yourself before you can be your best for the world.  If you don’t take the time to evaluate who you are, what’s important to you, and what you need in order to be your best self, then you can’t offer anything worthwhile to yourself or to anyone else.  You are the genesis to self-renewal. You are the wellspring to your comeback. This spring, may your spirit bloom. May your mental buds and physical blossoms of newness grow straight from the restored place of love and appreciation of who you are.