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Self-Care VS. Self-Love, The Difference & How It Transforms Your Life!

self love self-care Jun 10, 2024

Understanding Self-Care and Self-Love: Definitions, Benefits, and Getting Started

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Hey there, lovely soul! Let's dive into two essential concepts for a happier, healthier you: self-care and self-love. 

I call myself a self-care & mindset coach, but I have to say, I believe self-care and self-love go hand and hand and you can’t really have one without the other.  

This is why I believe they share many common benefits. One of the actions that I believe come under the definition of both self-care and self-love is boundaries. I always say that boundaries are the foundation for self-care and without it, all the wonderful self-care you do for yourself will not stick or have a profound effect on your life. Boundaries are deep-level self-care and an act of deep self-love. 

When I transitioned from professional people pleaser to boundary badass, this is when things really shifted for me. I used to adjust myself, my personality and actions to make others comfortable in order to avoid conflict or in order to feel accepted. 

Now I understand that when I show up 100% as my authentic self and set boundaries I not only protect and support myself and my energy, but I then will also be surrounded by the people who are aligned to be in my life. 

So, they might sound similar, but they each have unique vibes and incredible benefits. Let's break it down and learn a little bit about their differences.

Defining Self-Care

Self-care is all about those intentional activities we do to keep our physical, mental, and emotional well-being in check. Think of it as your personal maintenance routine. It could be as simple as taking a bubble bath, going for a jog, or savoring a healthy meal. It's anything that helps you recharge and feel good.

Defining Self-Love

Self-love, on the other hand, is a bit deeper. It's about having a profound appreciation and respect for yourself. It's knowing your worth, being kind to yourself, and making choices that reflect your true desires and values. Self-love means embracing all parts of yourself, even the flaws, and loving yourself unconditionally.

Let’s look at the some of the Benefits of Self-Care

  • Improved Physical Health: Regular self-care, like exercise and proper nutrition, keeps your body in tip-top shape.

  • Enhanced Mental Health: Practices such as mindfulness and meditation can melt away stress and anxiety.

  • Better Emotional Well-being: Self-care helps you manage your emotions, leading to a happier you.

  • Increased Productivity: Taking time to rest and recharge boosts your focus and efficiency.

  • Stronger Relationships: When you take care of yourself, you can be more present and supportive with others.

Benefits of Self-Love

  • Higher Self-Esteem: Self-love helps you see yourself in a positive light and boosts your confidence.

  • Resilience: Loving yourself helps you bounce back from life's challenges with grace.

  • Healthier Boundaries: Self-love empowers you to set and uphold boundaries that protect your well-being.

  • Emotional Stability: Accepting yourself fully brings inner peace and emotional balance.

  • Fulfillment: Self-love leads to a more authentic and fulfilling life, as you make choices that align with your true self.

Some of the Common Benefits

  • Enhanced Mental Health: Both self-care and self-love reduce stress and anxiety.

  • Improved Relationships: They help you build better, more supportive relationships.

  • Greater Happiness: Together, they promote overall happiness and life satisfaction.

  • Increased Resilience: They build your ability to handle life's ups and downs.

So, some of the questions I frequently get are how do I get started with self-care and how do I begin to unconditionally love myself?

Well, I made a list of how to get started and at the end of this post I’ll share a few action steps for today’s self-care practice. Last week I talked about making the commitment, this week is about taking action!

Getting Started with Self-Care

  1. Identify Your Needs: Take a moment to reflect on which areas of your life need more TLC.

  2. Start Small: Begin with simple practices like drinking more water, getting enough sleep, or taking short walks.

  3. Create a Routine: Establish a self-care routine that fits into your schedule, such as morning meditation or a nightly skincare ritual.

  4. Listen to Your Body: Pay attention to your body’s signals and respond with kindness, whether that means resting or moving.

  5. Set Boundaries: Learn to say no and protect your time and energy from overcommitment.

Starting the Path to Self-Love

  1. Practice Self-Compassion: Be as kind to yourself as you would be to a dear friend.

  2. Affirmations: Use positive affirmations to reinforce your worth and capabilities.

  3. Journaling: Write about your thoughts, feelings, and experiences to gain deeper self-awareness and acceptance.

  4. Surround Yourself with Positivity: Spend time with people who uplift and support you.

  5. Forgive Yourself: Let go of past mistakes and recognize that you are constantly growing and learning.

Self-care and self-love are the dynamic duo of a happy, life. By weaving these practices into your daily routine, you can create a resilient and joyful existence. Remember, start small, be consistent, and treat yourself with the kindness you deserve. Every little step you take brings you closer to a life filled with peace, happiness, and self-acceptance. 

As I said earlier, I’m going to leave you with some easy action steps to get started along with some awesome freebies you can grab to help.

Start checking in with yourself twice a day. Yup, it’s that simple to get started. 

I want you to find a comfy or happy spot. This could be your favorite chair or your bed. It can also be anywhere you can have a moment of privacy, shout out to all the moms out there, so, your bathroom or the car. Those were my hiding spots at least.

Then you will close your eyes, put your hand on your heart space and take a really deep breath in, filling your belly and then your chest. Hold at the top and then exhale through the mouth with a sigh. Be sure to release the tension in your body, release your shoulders, your jaw and neck and back. Do this a few times so you feel present with yourself and then ask yourself, how do I feel? Listen, what comes up? Then ask yourself, what do I need right now at this moment? Listen again. 

What are you listening for? A quick nudge, your intuition, a quiet answer. Listen to what pops up instantly and quietly and don’t question it. 

Then this is the most important step, Give yourself what you need! 

Now, I’m quite aware of life's pressures and responsibilities but this is it, the moment you decide to figure it out, put your needs first. Because when you do, you begin to morph into the best version of yourself that you get to share with your kids, partner, family, friends, your business. 

So, in this moment you have 3 kids screaming on the other side of the bathroom door that need you now and your body is saying, I need rest, now!

How can you get your kids to sit with you and have some rest? What is a creative way to do this? How can you add this in later, before bed? How can you clear an hour for yourself this weekend? Creating this space for yourself does not have to look perfect, there is no such thing. You just have to do it. 

 “When you care for yourself at the deepest level and love yourself this way too, you teach people how to treat you. You’re also a role model for everyone around you.”

As promised, the freebies!

Here is a link to my free meditation bundle. HERE. These are some of my most downloaded meditations. They’re on the shorter side which is great for beginners. 

Also, here is a link to set up a complimentary call to do the Self-Care/Self-Love Balance Sheet. HERE. This will help you identify your needs, Step One on getting started in the self-care section. 

I’ll help point you in the right direction! 

Remember to infuse self-care and self-love into every day!


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