Why should you be your own best friend? Well, doing so is a powerful gift that you can give yourself and others. For you it makes sense because having a trusted best friend always on hand is clearly a good thing. How about for others? Well, when you are best friends with yourself, others will experience a much better version of you. These are just two of the many good reasons to be your own best friend.
BTW – if you prefer an audio version of this, I have included one just for you at the end of this article.
What it means to be your own best friend
Being your own best friend means that you are there for yourself, even when no one else is. You are your own cheerleader, support system, and motivator. You give yourself permission to take full care of yourself up front and centre, so that you can be there for others in the ways they need you most.
It is about treating yourself with the same kindness, gentleness, and compassion that you would show to a dear friend or loved one.
Self-confidence, self-esteem & self-worth
In very general terms, self-confidence is your internal belief in your own ability. When your self-confidence is high it helps you to take sensible risks and to make effective decisions. Self-esteem is your current internal evaluation of how good or bad you are as a person. Self-worth is the idea that you are worthy of love and belonging.
Amongst other things, your ever-present inner voice will provide you with a running commentary as it updates you on these inner belief states. Listening to your inner voice has a massive impact on how you feel about and interact with the world.
Work on these elements as much as possible. Look to both balance and raise them. In other words, when you are confident and believe in yourself, then others will be confident in you too!
Be your own best friend with self-love and self-care
Self-love and self-care are two particularly important and beneficial concepts in your life, and you should again seek balance wherever possible.
Self-love is the act of caring for yourself in a holistic and even spiritual way. It includes self-care (see below), being kind and gentle with yourself, and not judging or criticizing yourself harshly or unnecessarily.
Self-care is the concept of taking care of your physical self. For example, eating the healthiest foods you can, getting enough sleep and exercise, avoiding harmful drugs or excessive alcohol intake, and managing your stress/anxiety levels.
How to Be Your Own Best Friend
Hopefully, you will have, or have had, at least one friend in your life who is always there for you. Even when you mess up, they are there to listen to you, support you and, if needed, even tell you that everything will be okay. If you do not have a devoted friend like this in your life right now, then it is time to step up, take total ownership, and become your own best friend.
Here are some approaches, ideas & mindsets to consider:
Get out of your own way
If you are like most people, you will know that you can often be your own worst enemy. You are the one who tells yourself that you cannot do something, that you are not good enough, or that you are not worthy of love.
You are also the one who can push yourself to the limit. and then even further, to achieve great and valuable things.
Be your own best friend and start to help yourself in the powerful ways you deserve. Yes, it is about self-care and self-love, but it is also about how you can use these skills to help and befriend others as well. Everybody wins.
Start by being kinder to yourself
People often think that they should be their own best friend, but they do not know how to do so. They feel they do not have the skills to be a good friend to themselves because they have never done it before. They really do need and want someone who is on their side. Someone who will tell them the truth. Someone who will love them unconditionally regardless of what happens. This person is you. Simply be kind to yourself as often as possible and you will build a great foundation.
Be your own best friend by being honest with yourself
It is important to be honest with yourself about how you feel and what you want from life. For example, you might want to do something completely different from your current job, but you cannot if you do not know what it is.
It is also important to be honest with yourself about how much time and energy you have for new projects, social activities, and other commitments. If you are already working two jobs, it is unlikely that you have the time or energy for a third one.
Being honest with yourself can help guide your private and professional decisions. Self-honesty ensures your decisions align with your values and goals.
Being honest with yourself helps you develop honesty with others. This makes it easier for them to be honest with you.
Be patient and compassionate with yourself
It is important to be patient and compassionate towards yourself.
We all have moments where we feel down and defeated. We all have difficulties. That is life. It is vital to remind yourself that these are temporary feelings, and they will pass.
You should be patient with yourself during these times. Not only might this give you the opportunity to fix what you need to fix, but you can also take care of your mental wellbeing so that you do not make any problems seem worse than they are.
Be your own best friend by not comparing yourself to others
Humans are mostly social creatures. As you are a human, you will often attempt to compare yourself to others. The marketing media assailing you 24/7 can place huge pressure on your internal belief processes. You can look at other people’s success (real or apparent) and feel disappointed with your own life.
It is important to realise that such comparison really is the thief of joy. It will steal your peace and make you unhappy.
You should not compare yourself to others. It is a pointless pursuit and an unhealthy one. Instead focus on the process of your life and work. Match your results against your own standards. Be grateful for what you have achieved and do not fret about what you have yet to achieve. It is your unique life, so live it and enjoy it.
Stay away from toxic people
The first step to dealing with toxic people is to identify who they are. Toxic people are those that are controlling, manipulative and always looking for an argument or a fight. They will use any opportunity they can find to disrespect and denigrate you. They love to make you feel like you cannot do anything right. If you feel bad, they feel better.
Rather than wasting your precious emotional energy in reasoning or fighting with them, it is far better to stay away from them. Engaging with these toxic people can affect your mental health, and it will affect the way that other people see you and how they treat you. People who have been around toxic people for a long time may start treating others the same way as well, which could lead to bullying or harassment in the workplace.
Be your own best friend by living more in the moment
If you find yourself worrying too much about past events or feeling excessively anxious about upcoming events, then you are not doing yourself any favours.
Yesterday is gone and tomorrow never comes, as the old saying goes. We live in the here and now. Consider finding out more about mindfulness, which will help you develop your facility with staying in the moment. Try it.
Try doing at least one feel-good thing every day
If you are like most people, you will want to feel good as much as possible. Hopefully, you will encounter many feel good things in your life. Being grateful for good things is an incredibly positive approach.
A simple yet immensely powerful technique to ensure you get this positive vibe every day, is to actively monitor your feel-good activities. Make sure you then do at least one such activity every day. Choose a low to no cost activity which harms no one else and you will reap the rewards in terms of self-confidence and self-esteem. For example, getting out into nature, listening to uplifting music, reading an enjoyable book, or helping someone.
Be your own best friend who will always be there for you
If you think about it, wherever you are in the world and wherever you go in the world there is always one person there. You! If you are your own best friend, then it makes sense that you will have your best friend with you wherever you are and wherever you go.
Being alone does not mean being lonely
Many people wrongly assume that being alone equates to being lonely. If you are alone but you are also your own best friend, you should not feel lonely at all. We are social creatures, but we should not let the amount of people around us at any one time dictate our happiness.
If you find being alone uncomfortable, try experimenting with some more solo activities to get comfortable with the solitude. Practice positive and motivating internal conversations. Let your mind enjoy the downtime from conversations and social interactions, and instead let it turn to more creative activities. For example, get out into nature, learn a new skill, take up a new hobby or visit an interesting new location.
Be your own best friend – start today and never stop
This is not rocket science. The idea is to treat yourself with the same love and reverence as you would a dear and trusted friend. The idea is that you will be your own best friend.
You simply need to commit then act. It will be a work in progress and is a continuous process over time. So, if you are not already your own best friend, what is stopping you? Start today and never stop.
That is all for this one
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PPS Here is the audio version of this article if you would prefer to listen.