Six Commandments to Self-Love

Every day is a whirlwind

It is 7:15 in the morning. In a heartbeat, you realize that your class starts at 8:00 a.m. After taking a quick shower, you are on your way to school. Then the worst things start to happen. You cannot find your I.D., the LRT stops because of technical problems, and you remember everything you need to accomplish, but failed to finish. Frustrated with life’s complexities and your mistakes, you wish you could just crawl under a rock and stay there.

We often encounter situations like this because of our trimestral system, where most of the time, we find ourselves dazed, aloof, or to put it simply—exhausted. Whether it is because of peer pressure, or unnecessary emotional baggage, we cannot push ourselves beyond our limits. Where have our self-worth and self-love gone? If you do not know the answers to these questions, do not fret. The Menagerie is here to bring self-love back into your life.

Thou shall eat well

Ever heard of the saying, “You are what you eat”? This quote explains that to be fit, and healthy, you should take note of what and how much we eat. Sometimes, however, you find yourself staring at food, and making mental calculations in your head of all the calories you will gain from eating what is in front of you.

Give yourself a break; go ahead and eat! Never deprive yourself of food. Starvation slows down your metabolism and leaves you prone to gaining weight. As long as you eat in proportions, and engage in physical activities, you are safe from those unwanted flabs. Balance is the key to healthy living, and a healthy lifestyle is key to making you feel good about yourself.

Thou shall power nap

“Health is wealth.” This is a reminder that you are not superheroes; you are human and you can get sick. While academics is priority, we should not devote our lives to collecting 4.0s or Dean’s Lister certificates. You cannot discount that countless sleepless nights are sometimes needed to study for exams and to finish projects.

Nonetheless, you cannot go on like this during your stay at the University. Humans should have at least eight hours of sleep everyday to have enough energy for the next day. Take 10 to 15-minute power naps in between your study sessions to revitalize yourself. It reduces stress and increases productivity. If you are a heavy sleeper, set your cell phone’s alarm clock on. You do not want to wake up from your power nap and face the living nightmare of morning.

Thou shall be friendly Thou shall be friendly. Photo by Martin San Diego

According to David Brooks, everyone is a social animal. In other words, it is in the presence and company of others that we shine the most. Indeed, the average human cannot live devoid of love, friendship and affection from others. In this social environment you live in, the need to get along with others, as well as helping others is vital for your happiness.

There are many ways to promote and strengthen social-related bonds among family and fellow peers. Strengthen your relationship with others by making time for a family activity.

Select from a variety of organizations at DLSU, which cater to your interests; make friends with your new co-members. Learn to be open-minded, and get to know them on a more personal level. Keep in mind that those who remain fearful towards change will never enjoy life. So, put a smile on your face, and give that fellow a friendly, “Hello!”

Thou shall set a list of goals

Most people look at the process of goal setting as something worthless, or boring. Who could blame them anyway? The legion of career talks and self-help books portray goal setting as dull. However, goal orienting does not have to be a tedious chore, if you put your heart into it.

Think big; it is your time to be what you want to be. Compile a list of anything you want and everything you want to be. Make it as long as possible, yet as substantial as it can get. Did you ever dream of flying to outer space, or writing your own best-selling novel? Jot it all down! Keep in mind that when you are setting goals, nothing is too big or too small. You owe it to yourself to put it all out. Just the prospect of waking up each day and seeing your compilation of dreams ought to boost your morale.

Time to get real. After compiling your dream list, it is time to turn it into a checklist of things that are achievable. Be sincere and honest with yourself when placing a check on items.

Laziness is also a no-no, since people are quick to disregard certain goals because of the amount of effort they need to devote. After deciding on your ultimate list of goals, work on them. Do not discard your rejected goals though; you can still use these as references for inspiration in the near future. Bottomline, push yourself and quit being a cynic. Your peers are bound to notice you as you climb the ladder to the top.

Thou shall keep a diary Thou shall keep a diary. Photo by Martin San Diego

Who says keeping a diary is just for 12-year old girls who write their secrets down and lock them away with small padlocks? Certainly, many things linger on a person’s mind whether they are dreams, or one’s true emotions. Sometimes, you just cannot seem to share these things with others.

Now, do not worry. Write them down in your journal, and leave all the heavy emotional baggage behind. Keeping a planner might be a great idea. There are more benefits to keeping a planner than just catharsis. According to a study by Penne Baker and Smyth, people who write about their thoughts have stronger immunity towards physical and emotional challenges. In other words, keeping a planner is healthy for the body and soul.

Aside from this, updating your planner is something you can use for self-discovery as you look back and reflect on memorable moments in your life when flipping through that precious notebook. By writing and re-reading your thoughts, you will slowly move towards the person you want to be.

Time to pause, hit rewind

Everything boils down to one thing; we need to satisfy our needs, whether they are as basic as physiological needs or as complicated as self-actualization needs. Unfortunately, you tend to ignore these needs because of your responsibilities as students or as sons and daughters of your parents. We forget to give ourselves the love we deserve.

You often get caught up in this fast-paced life, but all it takes is to pause for a moment, to bring you back. Yes, it is perfectly fine to think about yourself for once. You are important.

When was the last time you did something for yourself? When was the last time you had some alone time? Go ahead and go for it, Be it taking a leisurely walk around the park, eating a favorite snack, or looking forward to curling up on the couch, and reading a book you have been dying to read. It is all for you, and it is time to bring you back.

photos by Tinee Cruz & Martin San Diego

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