You should always put yourself and your own needs on the top of your priority list.
The relationship you have with yourself is the most important relationship in your life.
You should never even think of loving someone more than you love yourself. You can’t expect others to care for you unless you do it yourself.
How many times have you heard all of these sentences? And with reason, because each one of them is completely true.
Self-love really is crucial for both your mental health and overall happiness.
However, what happens when you mask some harmful behaviors and mistake them for self-love?
Yes, that is more possible than you might think, and here is when.
1. Over- or undereating
One of the first pieces of advice you’ll get when it comes to working on yourself is to work on your physical appearance.
It is to hit the gym, and make your body as perfect as possible.
Even though nobody can argue against your desires to be fit, what you need to remember is that loving yourself doesn’t have to do with your looks and your weight.
You can be the most attractive woman from the outside, but if you don’t feel beautiful from the inside, you’ll never think of yourself as enough.
Consequently, you won’t consider yourself worthy of your love.
Knowing all of this, it is clear why under- or overeating is one of the most common self-destructive behaviors most women display.
However, what makes it even worse is that many use the excuse of self-love and claim that they’re actually just taking care of their bodies
when engaging in these toxic habits.
Besides being unhealthy, overeating and undereating are also clear signs of mental issues.
Remember: as long as you’re harming yourself just to be more likeable to others, you don’t care for yourself as much as you think you do.
2. Remaining in your comfort zone
Are you settling for less in life? Do you feel trapped in a career in which you can’t reach your full potential, in a relationship which has become a habit, and in the city you outgrew?
If the answers to most of these questions are positive, the truth is that you’re actually stuck in your comfort zone.
Even though you might see this as a way of running away from unnecessary stress and a way of keeping yourself mentally safe, it is actually a way of silently ruining yourself.
You see, the thing most self-destructive people tend to do is remain in their zone of comfort.
It is spending their entire lives afraid of change and surrounded by the people and the circumstances they’re familiar with.
Yes, it is true that you shouldn’t push yourself too far over your limits and that you shouldn’t be putting impossible goals in front of yourself just to meet other people’s standards.
However, it doesn’t mean that not having faith in your own abilities is a good thing either.
Being afraid of trying something different, being afraid of cutting off the ones who do you harm (no matter how long you’ve known them and how much love you have for them), and not being able to step out of your comfort zone is bad for you.
3. Pitying yourself
Nobody is telling you to go hard on yourself every time you make the slightest mistake.
Nobody is asking you to judge yourself more than you would ever judge the ones you love or to pretend to be tougher than you actually are.
However, feeling sorry for yourself won’t get you anywhere either.
Giving yourself some slack is one thing, but pitying yourself is something completely different.
When you’re in some emotional pain, running away from it is not a good idea.
However, allowing it to identify you and become the most important part of your personality is also a self-destructive behavior.
So, please, instead of constantly babying yourself, get in touch with your inner strength, and toughen up as much as possible.
Take your life in your own hands instead of blaming fate for giving you lousy cards.
4. Living in the moment
How many times have you heard someone telling you to live in the moment?
To forget the past and not think about what the future might bring you?
After all, this is one of the basic principles of self-love: enjoying the present!
However, there is a huge difference between living your life to the fullest and completely disregarding everything that might come next.
Being irresponsible about your future and running away from your past demons (instead of confronting them like an adult) is self-destructive and harmful. It is everything but self-love.