You must never forget that you are the most important person in your life. Some, especially parents, would disagree with this statement but the fact of the matter remains that if you do not treat yourself well or consider your own needs first, you might not be around long enough to take care of those that you really care for. Since you are at this moment looking out at the world from within yourself, using your senses in an outward fashion, you could really say that you are at the center of the universe. As such you could say that you are the be-all and end-all of your entire universe, and that even though you might think that there are other things outside of you that are more important to you, the world then begins from your own inner being outward.
Never lose yourself loving through the loving of another. Great love and passions can sometimes completely take over our actions and we end up losing our own self identity as a result. This kind of ‘self annihilating love’ can seem quite satisfying at the time but it can have very negative consequences. To lose yourself in this way means that you believe that the other person or thing is far more important than you and that to give up your total being to this other, perhaps even your life, is worth it. You must realize though that there is nothing more important than your personal self, and that true love is expressed in a balanced way where love of the other and love of the self work in tandem. There is no real love of others without the love of self, anything expressed without the love of self is really a nihilistic drive that eventually destroys the lover and the loved.
Not making yourself second best means respecting your feelings. Never suppress your feelings but always try to express them as fully as you can. While this does not mean that you should impose your feelings upon others, it does mean that you should allow yourself to feel your feelings fully in the privacy of your own being. These feelings can let you know when you are not loving yourself enough by perhaps having you experience selfishness or anger. These feelings are not negative, they are just letting you know that you need more time on yourself and that you also need to take care of yourself and your own needs. Express your feelings and get to know your feelings, get to know what they mean and use them to discover your true self.
Honoring yourself means honoring your passions. We are all given only a certain amount of time in this life and wasting it doing things that you do not want to do or what others think you should do, is a waste of your personal life. Never make yourself second best, always follow your passions because they are yours and they are the desires you have. Cultivate your personal hobbies and always make sure to take enough time for yourself; to just think and contemplate your own life. By taking time for yourself you will discover your own thoughts and with these will discover yourself.
Treat yourself to something nice at least once a day. Stand in front of a mirror, look at yourself in the mirror and say, “I love myself”. Some people might find this to be incredibly difficult, if this is the case then you must ask yourself why this is so. It is possible that you could have been told by others, perhaps parental figures, that this is a bold and vain way to act. If others told you this then they did not truly understand what personal expression really means. This little exercise can have incredible benefits; both at being able to identify the beliefs that are creating low self-esteem within you, and as a way to begin to increase your self-esteem and your personal identity by having you face those feelings. When you love yourself you only wish the best for yourself, and as a result you stop sabotaging your life through negative thoughts and emotions. When you love yourself you can love others truly, without nihilistic dependence on the other.