Are you your worst foe...Let me ask you a question: are you your best friend, or your worst foe? I’m sure the answer lies somewhere in between so here’s another question for you: are you seeking happiness outside of yourself? Will you be happy when you’re in love, in the perfect job, when you’ve dropped the weight and feel validated by your parents? Will you be happy when your health is better, or when your bank account has something left over after the bills are paid?

If you want to stop feeling like you’re always seeking happiness and never finding it, you have to become best friends with yourself because YOU are where your happiness resides. Your relationship with yourself is the only lifelong relationship you will have and you can be so, so, so much happier right now if you nurture that relationship. Here’s how:

1. Courageously start to elevate yourself above your old comfortable yet self-destructive cycles of pain and misery. Start by admitting that you’ve been less than a great friend to yourself. You’ve treated yourself badly in the past – bad money or relationship choices, selling yourself short in your career, poor health and lifestyle decisions… you know exactly where you’ve been your own foe but it takes a lot of courage to admit it! Once you do admit it, you can begin to heal your relationship with yourself.

2. Be gentle with you. Your past not-so-great choices were based on what you knew then so don’t be harsh on yourself. Just become aware of the times you chose self-destruction (even a little) over self-elevation.

3. Praise yourself for your accomplishments, big and small. If you don’t, you could be waiting an awfully long time for someone to do it for you!

4. Remind yourself that you are, at the core, a good and worthy person. That is exactly how you were born! Remind yourself that your past hurtful and negative actions (toward yourself and toward others) were caused by your inner pain and hurt. Be compassionate to that hurt. That doesn’t excuse the behavior, but it sheds light on the fact that without that inner pain, you would have made different choices.

... or best friend?5. Accept yourself. Would your best friend punish you with judgment and criticism? No – or you would not be friends for long! Your friend accepts you and loves you exactly for who you are, not for some “ideal” version of you. Get it? They love you for YOU. As is.

6. Don’t take yourself so seriously! Laughter is the best medicine. Good-naturedly laugh at yourself and love your little quirks and weirdnesses that make you so awesome. Find humor in your gaffes. Uplift yourself by doing things that make you smile. Smile at yourself in the mirror every single day, with love in your eyes… a very, very powerful exercise!

7. Know yourself. What are your talents? Drives? Motivations? Desires? Likes/dislikes? Beliefs about your potential? Beliefs about the world? This is where journaling really helps, to identify who you are at the core, beyond society’s expectations but the real you.

8. Do what you love. Give yourself permission to be you and to explore and develop your talents. Let your inner genius come out! Let your gifts blossom and be proud of them! Do not hide from the world! If your best friend had a talent, you’d encourage them to share it with the world, right? Do yourself that kindness!

9. Speak well of and to yourself. Speak to and about yourself as you would your very best friend. No excuses!

10. Take great care of yourself. Excellent nutrition, stress management, exercise, sleep, making time for your passions, mental stimulation, emotional support, spiritual growth and contribution are essential elements of self-love and self-care.

When you love yourself, people become drawn to you, and your life takes on a brightness and richness that it cannot have in the presence of self-loathing (even a little self-loathing or self-pity lowers your vibration a lot!).

Becoming your own best friend can take persistence and effort, but it’s the single most important relationship you have so nurture it, support it and watch your life expand in the most gorgeous ways!