Oct 16

6 Ways to Love Yourself and Thrive

Many people restrain themselves from living their full potential because they are afraid of not being accepted and loved if they do it.

The fact is that we all tend to be hard on ourselves.

We might look at ourselves through a lens that amplifies the things we would like to improve, neglecting all the things that we have already achieved.

We might allow our imaginative mind to navigate the future spirally recreating unpleasant scenes from our past.

We might disregard our deepest dreams due to the belief that something is expected from us.

We might listen to a little voice inside our heads that creates elaborated stories about what other people might think or say about us.

We might think that other people’s behaviors are reactions to our actions or to the absence of them.

We might allow people, things and circumstances to vastly influence our lives and affect our inner world.

We might hide our true self deep inside of us, being afraid to shine our light in the world…

Deep inside my heart, I’ve found a valuable key that has allowed me to better embrace my true self. I’ve found that our greatest potential can only emerge when we acknowledge and embrace our uniqueness with appreciation.  When we water the seed that resides deep inside of us with care. When we nurture ourselves with all our love!

If you have been holding you back from achieving your potential, you might want to explore some of the tools I’ve been using along my journey to Self-Love. 





When you get caught up criticizing yourself, you can ask yourself what you would tell your best friend if he/she was going through the same situation.

Would you criticize and judge him/her?

Would you say harsh words and make that person feel guilty?

Or would you help him/her to see the issue in a new perspective?

Would you encourage him/her to find effective solutions?

Would you inspire that person to follow his/her heart?

Having these questions in mind and heart, ask yourself how you can be your own best friend.

By treating yourself as your own best friend, you are increasing your self-love.



You can only love yourself when you embrace who you are. The first step is to find out “who you really are”. Take some time to identify your core values, the things that are really important to you. Ask yourself if you have been aligned with those values, if you have been using them as the compass of your choices and actions. Be truthful and acknowledge your true feelings, needs and dreams. Realize that you, like everyone else, have the right to be just the way you are.

By accepting yourself, you can open your heart to let the people you love know what your dreams and yearnings are.

By living your truth, you are loving yourself for what you are.



Forgiving yourself and letting go of guilt open the doors to greater levels of self-love.

Looking at your past as a neutral observer can be a powerful catalyst for self-forgiveness.

You can choose a situation which you wish would have never happened. Look back and see yourself at that moment. Acknowledge that you believed what you were doing was a good idea. What you thought would be a good idea didn’t go well. You were not aware of the consequences. You acted according to the information you had by then. You were doing your best.

This realization can help you better accept what you have done and forgive yourself.

By forgiving yourself you make room for self-love.  



When you acknowledge you’re being hard on yourself, you can also evoke the nurturing love of a parent witnessing his/her baby taking the first steps. Being aware that falling down is part of the journey. Holding the space for the baby to take the steps. Taking care of the baby when he hurts himself. Encouraging him to keep going. Celebrating the small victories until walking becomes a natural skill. Loving the little baby all the way.

You have the power to choose taking good care of yourself as you would take care of this baby.

You love yourself by treating yourself as your own nurturing parent.



When you commit to work on yourself, you might focus on the rough edges you want to smooth, forgetting to acknowledge that you are a valuable gem.

By practicing this technique, you might find that you have been unconsciously neglecting your true value and restraining yourself from shining your light in the world.

Look at you as if you were seeing yourself through the eyes of some people who are part of your life: family, friends, partner, children, colleagues, coach, clients, acquaintances and others. Identify your positive character traits, qualities, strengths and skills. Acknowledge your true value and appreciate yourself from the heart.

By acknowledging your value, you boost your self-love.



This is a powerful technique that allows you to experience the elevated emotions of appreciation and love. Start by identifying some people whose lives you have positively touched over the years. Realize how your presence, smile, care, support, love or simple acts of kindness have affected them. Next, choose a few people who immediately come to your mind and heart. Then, imagine them in front of you. One by one, see them thanking you for who you are and for what you have done for them, feeling their sincere appreciation and gratitude deep in your heart.

By opening your heart to receive the gratitude from others, you can increase the love for yourself.


Finally, it’s important to be aware that self-love fuels the love from others.

When we love ourselves more, we feel worthier of receiving love from others. This sense of worthiness creates the space for more love to be experienced.

By radiating self-love from our hearts, we allow our love to be reflected back to us.

Just like tuning in a radio station, we tune into the people and things that will allow us to experience more love.


  1. Linda Vollertsen
    Thursday October 18th, 2018 at 03:12 PM · Reply

    Barbara, thank you. I feel your love radiating out in every word.

    It fascinates me when I’m reading something profound and out of the sea of beautiful, insightful thoughts there is one drop that splashes onto me and becomes the whole ocean. And everyone reading this will have their own awakening splash; one they will forever carry with them, that will transform them.

    When you wrote about us focusing on our rough edges when there is a gem to be acknowledged, it was like a splash of awareness, an awakening.

    I’ve visulized jewels of many colors being a part of who I am; all the gifts I was born into this world with. I’ve allowed them, at times in this life, to be scattered and hidden and tarnished and undervalued, so your metaphor spoke to me deeply.

    I will carry the image and the elevated emotion of this shining, beautiful, precious gem with me forever. Thank you for you,


    • Barbara Santos
      Thursday October 18th, 2018 at 05:11 PM · Reply

      Thank you for your lovely words, beautiful Linda.
      I did write those words from the heart.
      I am so happy and grateful for knowing that you had a splash of awareness through my message, allowing you to acknowledge the shining, beautiful and precious gem that you are.
      My heart could sense your unique bright light and its beautiful colors when we met earlier this year and deeply looked into each other’s eyes.
      Allow your light to shine bright, offering your precious gifts to the world.
      Sending you a big hug with all my love

  2. Name (required)Tamee Kreek
    Friday October 19th, 2018 at 05:48 PM · Reply

    Muchas gracias por todo su palabras. I randomly came across a link to this post and it really reminded me of about radiating love and much much more My spanish is slowly improving working and living in Puerto Rico where the culture the people hearts are so wide open. With much love for you. Tamee (Aqua Wings)

    • Barbara Santos
      Saturday October 20th, 2018 at 12:55 AM · Reply

      My dear Tamee, I am so happy to hear from you and to know that this post reminded you of radiating more and more love. It makes my heart sing!
      And I’m glad you’re sharing your life with more open-hearted people in Porto Rico.
      I am radiating infinite love and gratitude to you!
      Un abrazo fuerte, Barbara

  3. Antoine
    Wednesday October 24th, 2018 at 03:12 PM · Reply

    Wonderful post Barbara!
    Thank you so much for those very practical tools in order to develop our UNCONDITIONAL SELF LOVE, surely one of the most important virtue for each one of us (with joy, serenity and compassion)!
    And like you say, a fondamental quality in order to really give and serve others from the heart!
    And to be a great example to inspire others and to give them the permission to do the same!
    And would it not be absolutely essential to take care of the person with whom we spend our whole life, that is to say us?

    • Barbara Santos
      Monday October 29th, 2018 at 10:25 PM · Reply

      Thank you so much for your lovely words, Antoine!
      They reveal the wisdom and the qualities of your precious heart.
      Keep on inspiring others with your joy and authenticity.
      Keep on shining your unique bright light and being a beacon of light for others.
      Keep on loving yourself and living the higher expression of yourself!

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