Be Well

Self-Love - The Greatest Love of All

You’ve probably heard this before - that loving yourself is the greatest love of all. We’ve been told that it’s the best thing we can do for ourselves. But what we often don’t know is how we can develop that sense of love within ourselves, if we’ve never felt it before. What does self-love mean? How do we practice it? And what is the best way to start?
Acqua Sanctuary - Blind Shower Therapy

To put it simply, self-love is a state of appreciation for oneself. It means having a high regard for your own well-being and happiness; and that you are able to acknowledge your worth and not settle for less than you deserve. Poet Nayyirah Waheed said that the declaration 'I love myself' is the "quietest, simplest, most powerful revolution ever. It sure sounds empowering but what does it mean to actually practice self-love? And is it possible to maintain that relationship lifelong?

Like all relationships, the one with ourselves is also often flawed; it is changeable and conditional. The scales are easily tipped to one side when you get a salary raise, buy a fancy house or pass a driving test, and to the other side when you fail your diet, fall ill, or lose a job. The truth is that there will always be road bumps along the way, and life will constantly challenge your beliefs, making you wonder if it is even possible to love yourself all the time.

Self-love can look different to different people. You can start by asking yourself what self-love looks like to you. It could look like:

Your internal mental chatter starts to sound kinder to yourself

You start to draw boundaries

You start to acknowledge your worth

You give yourself a break from self-judgment

You start trusting yourself

Start being true to yourself

You start listening to your body

You learn forgive yourself and free yourself of guilt or regret

Dr. Marian Alonzo, Medical Chief, The Farm at San Benito, Philippines, says, “We humans are spiritual beings – experiencing this earthly existence living in a physical body, making the world a better place. This implies the duality of man, and therefore the reference to the Self and selfSelf’ refers to the spiritual aspect, our Higher Self you may say, while the self’ is that part of us which feels we are our bodies and nothing beyond that”. She continues, “In essence, we need to align self to the ideals of Self.  In other words: aligning my will to Thy Will’ (the will of the Divine). The Self is uncorrupted by illness or unfazed by the drama in life. When we achieve this, life is experienced as one of genuine mental and physical well-being”.

While not fully illustrative of who we are, we can say that we humans have four key aspects:



Physical and


A good way to start loving yourself is by attending to each of these aspects:

Mental: Rebalance your intellect with:

Be mindful of exposure to highly toxic media and digital media

Reduce consumption of mindless entertainment or drama

Reduce consumption of mobile data and reconnect to self and nature

Switch to reading books that uplift you, make you laugh, and make you think

Emotional: Connect with your heart centre with:

Build your muscle to self-awareness, growth, and healing

Visit a healing retreat like The Farm at San Benito, Philippines

Strengthen and leverage your social support network/reconnect with family or friends

Show acts of kindness

Physical: Nourish and nurture your physical body with:

A delicious spa treatment

Exercise, walk or yoga

Deep, relaxed sleep

Reduce consumption of toxins in your food; eg processed food, alcohol

A clean diet


Fast for 12-14 hours a day

Reduce caffeine

Look after your health with a complete medical check-up once a year

A gut cleanse at least once a year

Spiritual: Deepen your connection with self with:


Grounding/ walking barefoot on grass or earth

Quiet moments in prayer or contemplation

Spend time in fresh air

Journal, reflect

The Farm’s Mental Health Programme includes thoughtful activities that visitors can partake in to relieve their mental or emotional stress because it firmly believes in a holistic approach to recovery. Aside from offering voice signature technology that analyses psychosomatic conditions and mindful activities in a beautiful natural lush green environment, the programme includes a series of “harmonizing flow sessions” that deal with layers of blockages on the mental-emotional and conscious-subconscious levels. It includes art therapy - the aim of which is to “make visible what is invisible” in terms of subtle patterns or tendencies in an individual, Yoga Sessions, Mandala Flower Meditation, Power Walking, Functional Fitness, Wellness Talk with Afternoon Tea, Sound Healing, Kids' Programs, and more are complimentary daily mindful movement and functional fitness activities.

Self-love is a lifetime commitment; however, it comes with its ebbs and flows. Make the effort to get to know yourself better, fall in love with yourself, learn how to forgive yourself sooner, and celebrate even your smallest victories. Instead of waiting for acknowledgment or acceptance from others, start with yourself and be your own cheerleader.