In the short 21 years I’ve lived on this earth, I’ve read a gazillion love stories, watched about a zillion rom-coms and listened to more love songs than I’m willing to admit. Everyone wants to find love or ‘the one’ and, in the age of social media, the ideal Prince Charming should only be a few clicks away.
So whilst I was daydreaming one day, I thought, “What is the greatest love story of all time?” Is it Romeo and Juliet? Chuck and Blair? Kim and Kanye? Kanye and Kanye? I can’t deny that these couples are all ultimate couple goals (except maybe Romeo and Juliet; they should’ve maybe talked through the plan first), however I don’t think that they’re the greatest love stories of all time. I think, in this age, everyone is too quick to find Mr or Miss Right and, as a result, spend less time on themselves. Life is short and to find the love you want or deserve, I really think you should love yourself first.
“So how do you love yourself?!” the reader exclaimed. Well, if I had a simple answer I’d be shouting it from the rooftops and selling it to the highest buyer, believe me. Loving yourself is hard and, for some reason, we are our own worst critic. Why? Is it the media? Mean people? The media again? Nonetheless, we all go through days where we feel awful but if you buckle your seatbelts I have a few things that I’ve learnt in starting my quest for the greatest love story…
Treat people how you would want to be treated:
Remember that time you were wearing that outfit that you weren’t quite sure about? Then BAM! Someone was like, “OMG I love your outfit!” Your response was probably first an awkward “thank you” or “oh, this old thing” but inside, for that moment, you felt good didn’t you? Well, studies showed that paying other people compliments actually makes you feel better too. One theory behind this is that to appreciate something in another person you have to recognise it in yourself. By complimenting another person’s good trait, you are subconsciously rewiring your brain to think positively about your surroundings.
Listen to music that puts you in a good mood:
Okay, so anyone who knows me is probably irritated by the fact that I always have my headphones on but I have good reason! Singing and dancing can actually put you in a really good mood, particularly if it’s a feel good or empowering artist like Pink or Beyoncé. I’m not afraid to say that I spend most of my day just dancing and singing away in my room. I do, however, have to apologise to my neighbours. I bet they were jumping for joy the day I moved back in with my parents.
Dress in clothes that make you feel good:
Some people like a little red dress, others prefer a baggy shirt and leggings. It doesn’t matter what you wear as long as you feel comfortable. Be unique and authentic to you. If you feel comfortable and confident in what you wear, then wear it. I am 21 and I am constantly wearing baggy T-shirts with either SpongeBob or Disney characters on it. They make me happy and have actually been really good conversation starters.
Try and get rid of negativity:
This was undoubtedly the hardest thing for me. Negative people or negative thoughts are toxic. It took me a really long time to filter through the people who actually were authentic and those who didn’t really believe in me and brought me down. It’s hard and, in some situations, you can’t easily get rid of those negative people. Maybe they’re family that you can’t just push out of your life or colleagues that you have to work with. My advice in this situation would be to find that one thing that drives and empowers you to be the best you. Anytime I didn’t believe in myself, I would watch movies like Pursuits of Happiness or listen to Steve Jobs’ 2005 Stanford speech to help put my life into perspective. Steve Jobs and Chris Gardner both had many setbacks along the way and still managed to pull through and be successes in their own right. Sometimes the only thing that’s stopping you from being you is your own mind.
Do one thing each day to better yourself:
It could be going for a walk, mindful meditation, reading a book, volunteering, learning a new skill or just putting on a face mask. Doing one thing each day to better yourself will not only keep you occupied, but it also enhances you as a person. You could even pick up a new hobby along the way.
So, ladies and gentlemen. Put down that rom-com, step away from the computer screen (after reading all the posts on The Olive Fox of course) and enjoy being you. The greatest love story is loving yourself. Love yourself like Kanye loves Kanye and get to know the real you. You are awesome and it is time you start appreciating it.