There are thousands of self-help books, websites, and professional articles about how we can build better, stronger relationships with other people. After all, it is important to cultivate healthy relationships with your children, your partner, your coworkers, your friends, and everyone else important in your life.
However, are you taking time to cultivate a healthy relationship with yourself? Learning how to get along with yourself can be one of the hardest relationships you ever work toward building and supporting.
If you’ve ever suffered an incident that made you question the trust you have in yourself, it can feel even harder to repair. It’s easy to put on a kind and friendly face when you’re working with other people, but are you quick to show that same kindness to yourself? Sadly, showing yourself that same quality of kindness often isn’t the case!
If you’re struggling to get along with yourself, show yourself some empathy, or silence any negative voices you use with yourself, it is possible to change those habits and treat yourself better. With practice and persistence, these 35 tips for getting along with yourself can help you find healthy habits that work.
Show yourself some love, kindness, and patience–and learn to get along with yourself as well as you do with others. While it’s important to show kindness to everyone, it is perhaps most important to share some of that same kindness with yourself.
35 Principles Of Getting Along With Yourself
1| Learn to recognize when you’re being unkind to yourself.
This one is tough, especially if you’ve long adjusted to being unkind to yourself. If negative self image or self-talk is deeply ingrained in how you approach yourself, begin to correct this behavior by simply recognizing it.
When you take a moment to stop what you’re doing and acknowledge the unkindness (woah, what I just said to myself was really mean!), it can be a bit shocking. So many people are automatically unkind to themselves and don’t even realize they’re doing it.
2| Define your boundaries and honor them.
Trust yourself to make good calls about your personal boundaries. If you aren’t sure what your boundaries are, take some time to think about them: Journal about it, make a list, and organize your thoughts. Once you see where your most important boundaries are, you can better articulate them with others.
Other people won’t know where your boundaries are unless you communicate about them. Understanding your boundaries well enough to tell someone “don’t do that” or “that makes me uncomfortable” is a great way to get along with yourself. When you protect yourself from outside forces by honoring your personal boundaries, you’re honoring your relationship with yourself.
3| Practice swapping negative self-talk with more positive language.
This principle is similar to #1: If you’re long-adjusted to using negative language to reference yourself, it can be a tough habit to break. However, speaking to yourself negatively is no way to have a good relationship with yourself.
To beat the negative self-talk habit, begin by acknowledging when you use negative self-talk (I just made a bad comment about my body, etc.).
Once you recognize that use of negative language, actively replace it with something kinder or more truthful. For example, after making a negative comment about your own body, you could say, “instead of that bad comment, I am going to respect that my body allowed me to do a fun activity today.”
4| Take time to really get to know yourself.
It seems strange to think that someone wouldn’t know themselves, but it’s a frequent occurrence! Take time to get to know and understand yourself–it’s a key step to getting along with yourself.
If your time is often over-consumed with worrying about others, it’s hard to take time for yourself. For example, if you are a caregiver to a sick relative, you probably don’t have much time to spend worrying about your own likes, dislikes, and preferences. Take the time (even if it’s just a small window) each day to focus on yourself.
5| Honor your personal time and indulge in self-care.
From the boss who demands you work overtime to the friend who insists you go out with her every day, people are always vying for your personal time!
Spending time with yourself and indulging in self-care is crucial for getting along with yourself. Self-care activities are a chance to “recharge” your social batteries. Do the kind thing for yourself by allowing yourself a break from other people. Spend some time focusing fully on taking care of yourself.
6| Honor your strengths as well as your weaknesses.
Acknowledging your strengths is easy, but how often do you give attention to your weaknesses? Taking stock of yourself is tough–nobody likes to admit they have weak spots–but doing so is important for getting along with yourself.
When you honor both your strengths and weaknesses, you’re allowing yourself to be accepting of who you really are. You likely offer the same graciousness to the other people in your life. For example, your spouse isn’t a perfect person, but you still love them and value the relationship you have with them. Extend yourself with the same kindness by accepting and honoring both your strengths and weaknesses.
7| Make your personal needs a priority.
Is it time for your next dental appointment? Are you having a rough day? Did you get a terrible night’s sleep? Listen to your body’s needs and prioritize what you need to do to honor them.
Rather than skipping that dental appointment for an emergency business meeting or dragging yourself to a social engagement after an already-stressful day, prioritize your needs. Prioritize your personal needs by putting them first. Trusting yourself enough to listen to your body’s needs and then making them a priority is a key step in getting along with yourself.
8| Prioritize joy in your life.
If you find something that makes you genuinely happy, make the resources available for you to enjoy it! Spend a little extra cash on that paint set, watch an extra episode of your favorite TV show, and spend an extra half hour relaxing outside.
When you make your personal joys a priority, you’re showing kindness to yourself. Allowing yourself to indulge in life’s joys is an important part of getting along with yourself. Finding happiness in life is important.
9| Allow yourself to feel and explore all the emotions you experience.
Emotions are tough. Allowing yourself to feel those emotions without pushing them aside or trying to conceal them is tough, but it’s an important part of getting along with yourself.
Feeling emotions is a totally normal human experience, and no matter what your emotional reaction might be in a situation, it’s normal to feel it. Getting along with yourself means allowing yourself to experience those feelings and emotions–don’t feel ashamed of yourself.
Instead, get along with yourself by acknowledging, feeling, and exploring your emotions. As an added bonus, the more you allow yourself to feel and explore emotions, the easier it will become to do so, making getting along with yourself so much easier.
10| Be your own best friend.
Best friends are hard to come by. Add to your arsenal by becoming your own best friend. Being your own best friend is a great way to get along with yourself. Treat yourself the exact way you’d treat your very best friend.
Show yourself the same love, attention, affection, and enthusiasm. When you’re being your own best friend, you’re building a sense of trust within yourself that can’t be matched by a relationship with anyone else.
11| Find one reason to be grateful for yourself every day.
Bad mental health days happen–it’s another typical part of human existence. However, even on the cruddiest days, it’s important to find at least one reason to be grateful for yourself every day. It doesn’t need to be anything super significant.
Being grateful for yourself can be as simple as acknowledging your own existence and space in the world. Sometimes it can be as simple as acknowledging something kind you did for yourself or another human being. Regardless, being grateful for yourself is another key principle for getting along with yourself.
12| …And especially find another reason to be grateful for your body every day.
Body acceptance is a big step toward getting along with yourself. Finding peace with your body can take a lot of time to fully embrace.
Finding small reasons to be grateful for your body is an important step toward getting along with yourself. Even if it takes you a long time to make peace with your body, you can start small with little reasons to be grateful for it.
For example, a small reason to be grateful for your body could be as simple as “I’m thankful my legs carried me through my shift at work or “I’m thankful for getting a good night’s rest; my body feels refreshed.”
13| Accept that you’ll never have 100% control over everything in life.
A hard truth for perfectionists: You will never have 100% control over everything happening in life. It would be great if we all could have this power, but we simply don’t. Life throws curveballs and surprises around every corner.
Instead of hassling yourself over aspects of life that are beyond your control, you can learn to get along with yourself better by dropping a need for control. When you release the idea that you can have total control all the time, you’ll feel worry and stress begin to fade away.
Get along with yourself by accepting life’s uncertainties rather than fighting yourself over worry and anxiety about the mysterious “what-ifs” of life.
14| Silence your inner judge.
Everyone has an inner voice that serves as a judge. If yours is spending too much time judging you, it’s time to learn how to silence it. To really get along with yourself, you need to be less judgmental of yourself.
The next time you find yourself critiquing your actions too harshly or picking apart something you said, make yourself stop. Rather than allowing your inner judge to take over your thoughts, silence it and give yourself some peace.
15| Admit to your mistakes and own them.
Making mistakes is normal. Even the most disciplined, put-together people still make mistakes. It might not be fun to make a mistake and then have to handle the consequences, but it is a very normal part of life.
A good way to get along with yourself is to accept that mistakes happen. When you make a mistake, acknowledge them. Admit them to others, especially when your mistake can affect them. Most importantly, own them–don’t be afraid to say, “I made a mistake” and then get on the path toward correcting it.
16| Keep yourself in touch with your reality.
Everyone’s reality differs from person to person. Staying in touch with your personal reality is an important part of getting along with yourself. If you’re forcing yourself to deny truths and your own personal reality, it’s hard to like yourself.
For example, pretend you’re starting a new exercise routine. Although you haven’t been a runner in years, you want to start by running ten miles. Running ten miles is a great goal, but if you forced yourself to do that on the first day of your new exercise routine, you’d be totally miserable.
Get along with yourself by staying in touch with your reality–begin your new exercise routine slowly and build yourself back up to running the ten miles.
17| Practice radical honesty with yourself.
Getting real, raw, and honest with yourself can be harder than doing the same with another person. It can be tough to be honest with yourself. If you’ve ever tried to fudge the truth to make yourself feel better, you know how that can feel a lot easier than accepting the truth sometimes.
Radical honesty is the idea of grounding yourself and your senses in the truth. Rather than telling even the smallest of white lies, you prefer to be honest and truthful with yourself, even when it’s tough to accept. The idea is that choosing honesty always avoids trouble later–to best get along with yourself, stick with radical honesty to avoid any future pitfalls and disappointments.
18| Learn to acknowledge and face fear.
Being afraid of something is a reasonable, normal, and acceptable reaction to lots of stimuli! The word can be a scary place full of unknown experiences. Feeling fear isn’t a sign of weakness–rather, it’s a sign of being a human being.
When you feel fear, allow yourself the chance to really fear and embrace it. Acknowledge when something scares you. Often, taking the chance to acknowledge a fear by allowing yourself to feel the emotion is the best way to tackle the fear.
Getting along with yourself means giving yourself permission to feel scared. After acknowledging the fear, it becomes a little less intimidating, allowing you a chance to face it.
19| Allow yourself to let go of unfair biases and standards you hold for yourself.
We are our own worst critics. Do you criticize yourself and hold yourself to incredibly high standards? There’s nothing wrong with wanting excellence for yourself, but sometimes, this drive to always operate at the highest standards can be extremely damaging.
A good way to get along with yourself better is to let yourself release these unfair biases and standards. Recognize which of your standards are unreasonable.
Are these standards really inspiring you to do better, or do they make you feel terrible when you don’t meet them? If you’re feeling terrible, do a kindness for yourself by ditching them for a better option.
20| Create plans with concrete, actionable steps for reaching goals.
Dreaming big takes you places but having a solid plan will really get you there. A good way to get along with yourself involves focusing on your goals and aspirations in a way that makes the task manageable and actionable.
Spend time visualizing how you’re going to meet your goals. Brainstorm concrete steps you can take to get yourself closer to your goal. When you choose to work on actionable steps toward meeting a goal, you’re going to get along with yourself better.
Rather than feeling lost and confused about how to meet a goal (or even get started), you’ll have a plan laid out to assuage your fears, give you manageable tasks, and encourage you to keep working hard toward your goal.
21| Accept that it’s OK to take a break.
Superman is best left to the comic books–none of us can be expected to perform at 100% all the time! If you’re feeling tired, fatigued, or worn thin, give yourself permission to take a break when you need it.
If you force yourself to continue working through your body’s signals for a break, you’ll lead yourself into trouble. If you’re feeling tired, rest and revisit the task afterward. Learning to listen to your body and honor your needs for rest are a big part of getting along with yourself. Trusting your own body’s signals is a hallmark sign of a strong relationship with yourself.
22| Keep track of all your wins, no matter how big or small they are.
Give yourself some credit! Acknowledge all your wins, no matter how big or small they are. Getting along with yourself means crediting all the good you’re doing.
Did you just graduate from college? Acknowledge it! Did you cook a delicious dinner? Acknowledge it! Did you have a good mental health day? Acknowledge it!
When you give yourself credit and celebrate all the wins in your life, you’re building a happy relationship with yourself. In the end, you are your own biggest cheerleader and advocate. Get along with yourself by acknowledging and appreciating the good you’re doing.
23| Embrace failure as a learning opportunity.
Nobody wants to fail at anything, but failures are a vital part of the learning process. Learning to embrace your failures and adapt a more positive attitude about them is an excellent way to improve your relationship with yourself.
Embracing failure ties into the acts of positive self-talk and radical acceptance. Failure is going to happen to you at some point. However, how you choose to embrace that failure makes all the difference. If you spin it positively and choose to use it as a learning opportunity, you’ll develop a better relationship with yourself and get along with yourself much better.
24| Be more mindful and present in the current moment.
A good way to get along with yourself is to stay grounded in the reality of the current moment. If you spend a lot of time thinking about the past or dreaming scenarios that aren’t rooted in reality, you could be harming yourself.
When you stay alert and aware of what’s happening in the present moment, you’ll have an easier time processing new information and tackling your daily tasks. Rather than feeling frustrated and overwhelmed, you’ll feel prepared to handle whatever life throws your way.
25| Acknowledge that your relationship with yourself is the most intimate one you’ll ever have.
Friends and romantic partners may come and go, but the relationship you cultivate with yourself is truly forever. You know yourself better than anyone else in the entire world. Since you are the absolute expert on yourself, it’s important to respect that relationship as the most intimate one you’ll ever have.
Thinking of your relationship with yourself as being intimate is a major step toward getting along with yourself. Since you are so intimate with yourself, you understand the importance of being kind and gentle with yourself as well.
26| Set intentions for yourself every day.
Start out each day with a set of intentions. Rather than waking up, rolling out of bed, and attacking the world haphazardly, take a minute to determine what you want out of the day ahead.
Getting along with yourself meshes well with good intentions. Each morning, have a pep talk with yourself about what you want the day to bring. Getting your intentions out in the open will prepare you to make them a reality.
A few examples of intentions include:
- Today is going to be a good day.
- I am going to do great at [sport, subject, activity, test, etc.] today.
- I am going to make good choices.
- I am going to approach people with kindness.
- Today will be an exciting adventure.
- I am going to make the most out of what life brings me today.
27| Respect your body’s needs.
If you feel tired, take a nap. If you feel hungry, eat a snack. If someone is upsetting you, have a conversation about it. If you feel stressed, determine the root cause of that stress, and find a way to manage it healthily.
When your body gives you signals, it’s vital to listen to them. The human body has tons of innate abilities to communicate messages and needs with us all the time. Listen to those needs and respect them.
This is a core way to build a better relationship with yourself. Just as you want healthy communication between you and your partner, you want healthy communication between you and your body. However, if you disrespect your body’s needs, you won’t get along with yourself–nobody likes to have their needs and messages ignored, including the ones you’re sending to yourself.
28| Seek relationships with others who are truly supportive of you and your wellbeing.
Getting along with yourself sometimes involves other people. For example, consider your friend group: How does spending time with each of the people in this group make you feel? Chances are, you can think of at least one person you call a friend who probably is a little less than a true friend.
When you choose to spend time with people who don’t support you or treat you well, it’s tougher for you to get along with yourself. The unsupportive friends might make rude comments or dismiss your needs–this sends negative signals that you aren’t very important. Removing this toxicity from your life is a great way to get along with yourself better.
29| Have a plan for when things get rough.
Life isn’t all sunshine and roses. For the tough times, develop a plan to take care of yourself, handle the big emotions, and get yourself through the process of emotional hardship safely.
Keeping this plan in place and ready to go ensures that you create a gentle safety net for yourself. Taking time to preplan for the event of something bad happening is a great way to show yourself you care. It also prepares you for handling hard emotions better when your tools are already prepped and ready to go.
30| Find a way to find satisfaction in what you do professionally.
Jobs and careers are often points of contempt for many folks. Liking your job can be tough, but in order to get along with yourself, you’ll need to find some satisfaction in your professional life. Since most of us spend a hefty portion of our time working, this is a crucial area of life where getting along with yourself matters a lot.
Here are a few examples of how you can find satisfaction in your professional life:
- Attend professional classes or conferences to continue expanding your knowledge in your field
- Allow yourself to feel proud of what you do best at your job
- Seek new job opportunities when your current one no longer brings you satisfaction or joy
- Celebrate your strengths at work by acknowledging when you do a task well
31| Incorporate more healthy habits into your day.
A great way to get along with yourself involves taking good care of yourself. Make smart choices to benefit your health throughout the day. Show your body some love and care by making healthier choices.
If you have an opportunity to get some exercise, take it. Spend time outdoors and in the sunshine. Pack healthy meals and snacks to enjoy on a busy day. While these healthy habits are small, the benefits add up greatly over time.
32| Avoid the trap of thinking that caring for yourself is “selfish” behavior.
Throughout life, you’ll need to make decisions that are solely in your best interest. Although lots of people may depend on you, you’ll need to make choices that strictly benefit or protect yourself. Some people will view these choices as selfish, but this isn’t true.
People may think that you’re being selfish if you choose to care deeply about yourself. If you allow yourself to think that doing things strictly for your own benefit is bad or selfish behavior, you’re not going to get along well with yourself.
All people need to make decisions that are right for them. At the end of the day, you are the person who is watching out for yourself. Make the choices you need to make to live a happy, safe, and healthy life.
33| Cut toxic people from your life.
Are you allowing a toxic friend or family member into your life? Are you even letting some of these toxic folks call the shots on how they treat you? If so, you’re experiencing a big issue that’s stopping you from getting along with yourself.
A relationship with a toxic person can be tough to break, especially if the person is supposed to be someone you can love or trust. However, when you allow a toxic person too much leeway into your life, you’re not going to get along well with yourself.
As they treat you poorly, you’ll begin to think that is how you deserve to be treated. Get along with yourself and show yourself kindness by ending these toxic relationships with other people.
34| Focus on the facts of all situations.
Spiraling in a stressful situation is easy. If you find yourself panicking and not focusing on the facts when things get worrisome and difficult, remember to make yourself focus on the facts of the situation first.
Instead of allowing your worried mind to take the “what-if” wheel, stop yourself and remind yourself of the facts of whatever is happening. If it helps, write them down.
Getting along with yourself is easier when you give your imagination a break from imagining stressful scenarios and focus on what you do know is true first.
35| Try, try, and try again. Getting along with yourself takes patience and practice to perfect.
You won’t learn to get along with yourself in one day, especially if you’ve been in the habit of being mean to yourself. It takes time to develop new, healthier habits. If you have an “off” day, use your next opportunity to be kind with yourself. The more you incorporate self-kindness into your day, the better you’ll get along with yourself in the long run.
The Bottom Line
There are tons of principles for getting along with yourself. Learning to incorporate these principles into your daily life is a great way to regain trust and heal your relationship with yourself.
Although the idea of losing touch with ourselves seems bizarre, it can certainly happen. Investing time in learning to get along with yourself better is a major part of self healing.
When we learn that we can get along with ourselves, trust ourselves, and celebrate ourselves, life becomes a little less stressful and a little more calmer.
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