It is said that you can’t ever love anyone else if you don’t first love yourself. Here are a few ways that you can love yourself this Valentine’s day:

Take care of yourself. You have one body and one life, don’t throw away your health and well being for any reason. Commit to healthy habits that will last your entire your life.

Be authentic. Being the real you is a million times better than ever trying to fill someone else’s expectations.

Spend time with yourself. The best way to love yourself is to KNOW yourself and the best way to know yourself is to spend a little time alone with your thoughts.

Learn to say no. There will always be demands for your time and energy. Know your priorities and your limits and (graciously) decline anything that doesn’t fit.

Say ‘No’ to the ‘Shoulds’. Things are what they are and all of the wishing in the world won’t change one single thing. Once you stop thinking about how things ‘should’ be (or worse, how they should have been) you will be free to enjoy life as it actually is. If there’s actually something that you are committed to changing, ‘should’ doesn’t even come into the equation,you’ll make it happen no matter what.

Be kind to yourself. Stop expecting perfection (nobody is perfect – not even you) and stop saying mean things to yourself!

Express your creativity. Even as an adult I find that there are few things as rewarding as making something pretty. Maybe you like to paint, or build cabinets, or write poetry – whatever it is, give yourself the opportunity to express your creativity as often as possible.

Be grateful. There are so many things to be grateful for. Start a list and come back to it often.

Do nice things for others. Almost nothing feels better than doing a good deed so try not to pass up opportunities to bring sunshine into the lives of someone else.

How will you give to yourself this week so you’ll be ready to give to others once Valentine’s day rolls around this weekend?