How can you show up for yourself? We all hold the key to our own happiness in our hands. And in order for things to get better and achieve true happiness, we must learn how to show up for ourselves every single day.
This guide is not only going to tell you why it’s important to be there for yourself, but also 20 practical ways you can show up for yourself that will have a huge impact on your life this year.
Why Is It Important To Show Up For Yourself?
Before we dive into the ways you can show up for yourself, let’s first understand why it’s important to do so and what it means to show up for yourself.
Showing up for yourself means taking care of your own needs and desires, not just physically but emotionally and mentally as well.
Showing up for yourself means taking responsibility for your happiness, your own well-being, and your personal success.
It’s about acknowledging your needs, setting boundaries, and making choices that align with your values and goals.
It’s about being present, engaged, and proactive in your life.
When we talk about showing up for ourselves, we’re talking about self-care, self-love, and self-respect.
It’s about prioritising your needs and making sure you’re taking care of your mental, emotional, and physical health. The entire package!
20 Ways To Show Up For Yourself
It’s time to choose happiness and build the life you want! Do these things on a daily basis to strive towards your dream life.
Here are 20 empowering ways to show up for yourself every single day:
1. Get Clear With Your Goals
Having clear, defined goals is the first step toward achieving them.
Understanding what you want from life, what makes you happy, and what you’re passionate about can help you set goals that are meaningful and fulfilling.
Start by identifying your long-term goals, then break them down into smaller, more manageable steps.
This might involve visualization of how you want your life to look in 5 or 10 years if these aren’t easy for you to picture yet.
Make sure your goals are realistic, measurable, and are in alignment with your values.
Once you’ve got those big goals in mind, work backwards with the smaller steps and daily routines you need to build in order to reach them.
Monthly goal setting is a big part of my personal goal process. Yes, I have my big annual goals and longer-term goals, but setting monthly goals that align with these bigger goals makes them more attainable and helps me see smaller progress each month.
Another perspective I really love is building habits rather than goals.
This process defined in the book ‘Atomic Habits‘ by James Clear identifies the power of creating daily habits and stacking those habits to allow progress towards that bigger ideal.
2. Make Time For Things That Bring You Joy
In our busy lives, it can be easy to forget about the things that bring us joy.
But these activities, whether it’s a hobby, spending time with loved ones, or simply taking a walk in nature, are crucial for our mental health and emotional well-being.
They help us relax, recharge, and stay connected with ourselves.
Pursuing our passions also gives us extra purpose and reasons to be excited every single day!
Make it a point to schedule time for these activities, just as you would any other important appointment.
3. Set Boundaries & Stick To Them
Setting boundaries is about respecting your own needs and ensuring others respect them too.
It’s about saying no when you need to, asking for what you need, and not allowing others to take advantage of your time or energy.
Setting healthy boundaries can be challenging, especially if you’re used to putting others’ needs before your own, but it’s crucial for your well-being and self-respect.
This means saying ‘no’ when you’ve got too much going on already, or you simply don’t want to do something. Get out of the habit of always saying yes.
Protect your time because it is valuable.
4. Get Enough Sleep
Sleep is essential for our physical health and cognitive function.
It’s also crucial for our mental health, as it helps regulate our mood and manage stress.
Aim for 7-9 hours of sleep per night, and try to maintain a consistent sleep schedule.
Create a relaxing bedtime routine, make your bedroom a calm and comfortable space, and avoid screens before bed to improve the quality of your sleep.
This is one area I myself have to really focus on consistency otherwise I do let it slip with too many late nights and early mornings.
5. Be Kind To Yourself
We often treat ourselves much harsher than we would treat others.
However, self-criticism and negative self-talk can be damaging to our mental health and self-esteem.
Next time you’re having negative thoughts about yourself consider, ‘Would I say this to a dear friend?’.
This is a good reminder to stop those self-criticisms in their tracks. Switch that little voice to positive self-talk.
Treat yourself like you would a close friend!
Practice self-compassion by treating yourself with kindness and understanding. Acknowledge your struggles, forgive your mistakes, use daily affirmations and remind yourself that nobody is perfect.
6. Take Care Of Your Health
Taking care of your physical health is a key part of showing up for yourself.
This includes eating a balanced diet, staying active, getting regular check-ups, and listening to your body’s signals.
It also includes taking care of your mental health, by managing stress, seeking help when you need it, and practicing self-care.
It doesn’t mean you need to be doing a 5km run every day (unless you want to do that). It does mean making time to look after your body, inside and out.
You’ve only got one! Treat it well.
7. Stop Caring What Other People Think
It’s natural to want to fit in and be liked, but constantly worrying about what others think can hold you back and affect your self-esteem.
Remember, you can’t please everyone, and you can’t control their opinions or judgments.
The same goes for not following your dreams because you’re worried about what others will think. Friends, partners, parents, siblings.
Trust me, I still get a lot of big reactions about choosing to blog for a living instead of practising psychology, but this is the career that fuels my passions.
Focus on being true to yourself, living according to your values, and making choices that make you happy.
Be your authentic self! Let your freak flag fly and embrace every little quirk.
8. Practice Gratitude
Gratitude can have a powerful impact on your mental health and outlook on life. It can shift your focus from what’s wrong in your life to appreciating what’s right.
Start a gratitude journal, or simply take a few minutes each day to reflect on what you’re grateful for.
This simple act has such a drastic impact on developing a positive mindset.
I have a daily phone reminder pop up each morning asking me what I am most excited about today. This means I start my day with positive thoughts and a grateful heart.
9. Surround Yourself With People Who Lift You Up
The people we surround ourselves with have a significant impact on our self-worth, happiness, and outlook on life.
Surround yourself with positive, supportive people who respect you, appreciate you, and encourage you to be your best self.
Minimise contact with those who bring you down or drain your energy.
Eliminate toxic people when possible. Sometimes this isn’t possible (such as in the workplace), so just do what you can to protect your boundaries when with these people
Your inner circle should be made up of people who inspire, motivate, and challenge you to grow.
10. Live In The Present Moment
Living in the present moment, or practising mindfulness, can help reduce stress, improve your mood, and enhance your enjoyment of life.
Try to let go of regrets about the past and worries about the future, and focus on experiencing the present moment fully.
This is the ultimate way to live with intention.
After all, we can’t change what has already happened so it isn’t worth investing our time into. That time is valuable.
11. Process Negative Emotions (Instead Of Avoiding Them)
Negative emotions are uncomfortable, but they’re a part of life and often signal that something needs to change.
It’s important to allow yourself to feel your feelings, instead of ignoring or suppressing them.
Whether they’re positive or negative, feelings are a natural response to our experiences.
Acknowledging your feelings can help you understand yourself better, cope with stress, and navigate life’s challenges more effectively.
Instead of avoiding these feelings, try to understand and process them. This might involve talking about your feelings with someone you trust, writing in a journal, or seeking professional help.
A great way to do this is with an intentional journal practice or exploring some self-love journaling prompts to help you reset.
12. Ask For Help When You Need It
Sometimes, showing up for yourself means admitting that you can’t do it all alone.
It’s okay to ask for help when you need it, whether it’s from a friend, family member, or professional.
Remember, asking for help is a sign of strength, not weakness.
We all need support from time to time and seeking help shows that we value ourselves enough to prioritise our well-being.
13. Challenge Yourself
Challenging yourself can help you grow, learn, and build confidence.
This could involve learning a new skill, taking on a challenging project, or stepping out of your comfort zone in some way.
Embrace challenges as opportunities for personal growth, and don’t be afraid to make mistakes along the way.
Trying new things is one of the best ways to build resiliency for when we face difficult times too.
Some of the best things take a little hard work, but great things can come from them!
14. Regular Self Care
Self-care is about taking care of your physical, mental, and emotional health.
This can involve anything from taking relaxing bubble baths or going for a long run to spending time with loved ones.
Make self-care a regular part of your routine, and remember that it’s not selfish to take care of yourself.
There are plenty of ways to fit self-care into your life, even when you’re busy! Sometimes just 5 minutes can have a big impact.
The most important part of self-care is that it’s something that helps you to recharge as part of your daily life.
You can’t pour from an empty cup!
15. Speak Up For Yourself
Be your own advocate!
Speaking up for yourself is about expressing your thoughts, feelings, and needs clearly and assertively.
It’s about standing up for your rights and ensuring you’re treated with respect.
It might feel uncomfortable at first, but it’s a crucial skill that can boost your self-esteem and improve your relationships.
16. Celebrate Your Wins
Celebrating your wins, big or small, can boost your confidence and motivation.
It’s also a great way to acknowledge your efforts and progress.
So whether you achieved a major goal, or simply made it through a tough day, take a moment to celebrate.
17. Journaling and Self-Reflection
Journaling is a powerful tool for self-reflection and emotional processing.
Writing about your thoughts, feelings, and experiences can help you gain insight, solve problems, and manage stress.
You can use a journal to track your progress toward your goals, express your creativity, or simply document your life.
18. Connect with your intuition
Your intuition, or gut feeling, is a powerful guide that can help you make decisions that align with your true self. Learn to listen to your intuition, trust it, and let it guide you.
You can connect with your intuition through meditation, journaling, or to simply set aside time to reflect.
Your intuition knows what’s best for you, so don’t ignore it.
19. Keep Moving Forward
No one is perfect and we all make mistakes. But the important thing is to keep moving forward and learning from our experiences.
Show up for yourself by embracing imperfection and using setbacks as opportunities for growth.
Remember, the key to success is progress, not perfection.
20. Don’t Settle For Less Than You Deserve
Knowing your worth and refusing to settle for less than you deserve is a powerful act of self-respect.
Whether it’s in relationships, work, or any other aspect of life, remember that you deserve to be treated with respect and kindness.
This means getting yourself out of toxic situations and fighting for your right to happiness.
This is the ultimate act of self-love!
Conclusion: How To Show Up For Yourself
Showing up for yourself is about taking care of your needs, respecting yourself, and living life on your own terms. It’s about making choices that align with your values and goals and taking steps toward the life you want. With these strategies, you can start showing up for yourself every day this year and beyond.