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Have You Been Throwing Away The Healthiest Part Of Your Avocado?

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Avocados are probably one of the greatest foods of all time, and not just because they taste so darn good! They are also extremely beneficial to your health and remarkably versatile in the kitchen. Offering a very wide array of medicinal properties, they are loaded with healthy fats, lutein, vitamin K, and folate, among many other vitamins and nutrients.

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But did you realize that you might be getting rid of the most beneficial part of the avocado every time you eat one? No, it’s not the skin… it’s the seed! Avocado seeds actually make up around 70% of the avocado’s nutritional benefits. Incorporating avocado seeds or avocado seed oil into your diet is a great way to boost your antioxidant and nutrient intake.

Other Benefits Of The Avocado Seed

According to the Encyclopedia of Common Naturals Used In Foods, Drugs and Cosmetics, tests conducted on rats and mice have shown that avocado seeds have anti-tumor properties, due to a condensed flavonol found only in the seeds.

Avocado seeds are also loaded with soluble fibre. In fact, they are said to be among the highest sources of naturally occurring soluble fiber. Soluble fiber is extremely important for your digestion and digestive track. With adequate sources, you can drastically reduce your risk of developing Irritable Bowel Syndrome and other intestinal disorders.

Because of their high antioxidant content, avocado seeds have the potential to lower cholesterol and decrease your chance of developing heart disease or having a stroke.

Ways To Eat An Avocado Seed

You can blend up the avocado pit in a high-powered blender and add it to your smoothie. The pit does have a bit of a stronger flavor, so it is important to mix it with something that can stand up to its intensity, like a green smoothie or juice.

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You can dry and then grate the pit to add to sauces or use as a seasoning directly over your food. Also, if you dry the pit prior to use it will have a slightly longer shelf life. You can do this in a dehydrator or just leave it on a sunny window sill for a few days.

Many Other Uses

Aside from including them in meals, avocado seeds can be used for a number of different things:

  • Try chopping it up in a blender or food processor after being dried and mix with either a mashed banana or half of a mashed avocado for a simple, all-natural facial scrub.
  • You can attempt to grow an avocado tree from a seed, although I will be honest, I have not had much luck with that up here in Canada! It’s worth a shot though, you can follow some simple directions here.
  • You can also treat various aches and pains by making a tea with the avocado seed. Either place half of the seed in boiling water for 10 minutes, or dry out the seed, blend to a powder, and add 1 tablespoon to 1 cup of boiled water. This is great for a stomach ache, and can alternatively be cooled and applied topically to soothe itchy skin.
  • The dried seeds can be used for various arts and crafts projects and for making jewellery and decorations. Check out this link for more information.

To think we’ve been throwing these out all this time! Do you have any unusual ways of using avocado seeds? Please share in the comments section below!

Much Love

Sources are embedded within this article.

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Alternative News

Association of American Physicians & Surgeons Sues Rep. Adam Schiff For “Censoring Vaccine Debate”

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    The Association of American Physicians & Surgeons are suing Rep. Adam Schiff for "censoring vaccine debate."

  • Reflect On:

    Should information that creates and generates concern among the population about vaccines and vaccine safety be censored, even if it's factual and not actually 'fake news?'

Vaccines are a hot topic right now, and vaccine hesitancy is growing and quickly gaining momentum. The reality of vaccine hesitancy is no longer a secret, as many studies on the matter have been published. And it is no longer simply among concerned parents. This study published in the journal EbioMedicine discusses how practitioners in France are becoming increasingly hesitant to prescribe some controversial vaccines to their patients.

The World Health Organization believes vaccine hesitancy is one of the biggest threats to global health security. Professor Heidi Larson, a Professor of Anthropology and the Risk and Decision Scientist Director at the Vaccine Confidence Project, was one of many academics to speak at the World Health Organization’s recent Global Vaccine Safety Summit, where she explained why this is being considered a major problem:

The other thing that’s a trend, and an issue, is not just confidence in providers but confidence of health care providers. We have a very wobbly health professional frontline that is starting to question vaccines and the safety of vaccines. That’s a huge problem, because to this day any study I’ve seen–and we’re constantly looking on any studies in this space–still, the most trusted person on any study I’ve seen globally is the health care provider. And if we lose that, we’re in trouble.

Dissenting Professionals, Conflicting Statements

This type of hesitancy among health professionals has begun to spawn organizations looking for answers to their questions. ‘The Physicians for Informed Consent’ is one of multiple examples. It’s promising that doctors, scientists and health safety advocates that have come together to share resources about vaccines, and more importantly voice concerns that they have about certain vaccines and their safety.

At the summit, Dr. Martin Howell Friede, Coordinator of Initiative For Vaccine Research at the World Health Organization, brought up the issue of adjuvants, noting some of the problems with using adjuvants that do not have a proven track record of safety. Many people at the conference also emphasized the need for more safety testing and studies to address the concerns that are being made by vaccine safety advocates. Personally, I think this is encouraging. Science should never cease to question, and who wouldn’t want more safety studies and testing on medications that are being administered worldwide?

As this issue becomes more scrutinized by the public as well as health care professionals, more and more conflicting statements made by high-ranking health authorities are being uncovered, which in themselves may lead to a breakdown of confidence in vaccines. For example, Soumya Swaminathan, MD and Chief Scientist at the World Health Organization, stated at the conference,

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I don’t think we can overemphasize the fact that we really don’t have very good safety monitoring systems in many countries and this adds to the miscommunication and the misapprehensions, because we’re not able to give clear cut answers when people ask questions about deaths that have occurred due to particular vaccines… One should be able to give a very factual account of what exactly is happening, what the cause of deaths are, but in most cases there’s some obfuscation at that level and therefore there’s less and less trust then in the system.

Prior to this statement, the WHO released a promotional video just days before the conference began, where Dr. Swaminathan contradicted her statement above, saying “we have vaccine safety systems, robust vaccine safety systems.”

It would be nice to have answers as to why the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act has paid close to 4 billion dollars to families of vaccine injured children, and what that says about these ‘safety systems’ she is talking about. Clearly, there seems to be a need to make our vaccines safer and more effective. Personally, I believe forced vaccination to be quite unethical given the fact that so many questions remain unanswered.

Read more about the conference here: Scientists Share Facts About Vaccines At World Health Organization Conference For Vaccine Safety

Association of American Physicians & Surgeons Sue Rep. Adam Schiff

The growing vaccine hesitancy has led the pharmaceutical industry and its supporters to a dangerous strategy: mass censorship. For those of you who haven’t heard, politicians and social media outlets are taking action steps to censor information about vaccines that is not aligned with the industry and its regulatory ‘arm,’ the CDC. In other words, just about anyone who is even questioning vaccine safety, let alone providing evidence that vaccines are not safe, is liable to be discredited, de-monitized, or de-platformed from social media.

Leading the charge is Congressman Adam Schiff, an advocate of vaccine safety and friend of the pharmaceutical industry, who has used his power and influence to immediately strengthen censorship efforts. His moves have been seen as unfair, unethical, and even illegal. In fact, on Jan 15, 2020, the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, along with Katarina Verrelli, on behalf of herself and others who seek access to vaccine information, filed suit against Adam Schiff in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. Plaintiffs allege that Defendant Schiff has abused government power and infringed on their free-speech rights.

Here’s how the association characterizes the situation:

Who appointed Congressman Adam Schiff as Censor-in-Chief?” asks AAPS General Counsel.  “No one did, and he should not be misusing his position to censor speech on the internet.”

In February and March 2019, Rep. Schiff contacted Google, Facebook, and Amazon, to encourage them to de-platform or discredit what Schiff asserted to be inaccurate information on vaccines. He then posted the letters and press release on the House.gov website.

Within 24 hours of Schiff’s letter to Amazon dated Mar 1, 2019, Amazon removed the popular videos Vaxxed and Shoot ’Em Up: the Truth About Vaccines from its platform for streaming videos, depriving members of the public of convenient access.

Under a policy announced in May 2019, Twitter includes a pro-government disclaimer placed above search results for an AAPS article on vaccine mandates: “Know the Facts. To make sure you get the best information on vaccination, resources are available from the US Department of Health and Human Services.” The implication of this disclaimer is that if information is not on a government website, then it is somehow less credible.

On Facebook, a search for an AAPS article on vaccines, which previously would lead directly to the AAPS article, now produces search results containing links to the World Health Organization (WHO), the National Institutes of Health, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Visits to the AAPS website have declined significantly since March 2019, both in absolute terms and relative to the decline that would result from a story’s losing its recency.

“The internet is supposed to provide free access to information to people of different opinions,” stated AAPS Executive Director, Jane Orient, M.D.

Dr. Orient continues, “AAPS is not ‘anti-vaccine,’ but rather supports informed consent, based on an understanding of the full range of medical, legal, and economic considerations relevant to vaccination and any other medical intervention, which inevitably involves risks as well as benefits.”

AAPS argues in the complaint against Rep. Schiff: “The First Amendment protects the rights of free speech and association. Included within the right of free speech is a right to receive information from willing speakers. Under the First Amendment, Americans have the right to hear all sides of every issue and to make their own judgments about those issues without government interference or limitations. Content-based restrictions on speech are presumptively unconstitutional, and courts analyze such restrictions under strict scrutiny.”

The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) is a national organization representing physicians in all specialties since 1943.

The Takeaway

The terms “anti vax” and “pro vax” are really not serving in the best interest of the collective. All they do is divide people when in reality, all of us want the same thing, healthy children, and effective and safe medications if we are going to use them. With all of the concerns that are still being made about vaccines, questioning vaccine safety should not be a problem and in fact, should be welcomed by everybody. Forcing mandatory vaccination policy and censoring information on vaccines, in my opinion, seems to be quite tyrannical and immoral at this stage. I may have a different opinion if vaccines were 100 percent safe and effective for everybody, but they’re not.

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Awareness

Alternatives To Viagra That May Treat Erectile Dysfunction

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Erectile dysfunction is something that affects man men. It seems the only solution is medication, but their maybe other alternatives available.

  • Reflect On:

    Why is there such a lack of resources when it comes to the research of alternatives methods for treat certain health problem?

For many men experiencing erectile dysfunction, a little blue pill known as Viagra can be a quick fix thanks to modern medicine. However, like many other quick fixes developed by the pharmaceutical industry, those benefits don’t come without some added risks. Pharmaceuticals often impose the “bandaid effect” on our bodies, covering up the problem rather than actually solving it through addressing the root cause of the health issue. 

When it comes to Viagra, choosing to take this little blue pill is sort of like choosing the blue pill in the Matrix. Sometimes we can become so blinded by the advantages of something that we forget about its potential side effects, and ultimately fail to address the real issue at hand. So, in hearing that this blue pill could seemingly fix your sex life again, many men choose to take it, while simultaneously ignoring the risks.

In reality, there are some pretty serious health risks associated with Viagra. Like many other pharmaceutical products, by ‘fixing’ one area of the body, you could be harming another.

The Viagra website states it can potentially cause some serious side effects, including:

  • Priapism, otherwise known as a long-term erection that can permanently damage your penis
  • Loss of vision in one of both eyes
  • Hearing loss, damage to hearing, or ringing in ears
  • Headache
  • Upset stomach or nausea
  • Back pain
  • Muscle pain
  • Rash
  • Heart attack or irregular heartbeat
  • Stroke
  • Death

Despite these potential risks, over 23 million men have been prescribed Viagra. This indicates there’s a huge number of men who experience erectile dysfunction, and it’s understandable they’d turn to Viagra given how normalized pharmaceuticals are in our society and how cruelly men who suffer from this problem are portrayed in the media.

Instead of going deeper and asking ourselves why our health problems occur, we tend to go to the pharmacy for a quick fix or ask our doctors to prescribe us some pills. However, just like any other health problem, erectile dysfunction is simply a symptom of your current state of being. Our health issues don’t just “happen to us,” they manifest as a result of our past and current health and wellbeing.

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Erectile dysfunction can occur due to high blood pressure, heart problems, diabetes, high cholesterol, hormonal problems, alcohol abuse, smoking, cocaine use, pelvic injuries, spinal issues, radiation therapy around the pelvic region, obesity, and more.

These underlying causes of erectile dysfunction may explain why some of the side effects of Viagra can be so life-threatening in the first place. When men take those blue pills, they can get lost in the excitement of the experience and end up exerting themselves beyond their physical limitations. If these men already have preexisting conditions such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, or high blood pressure (which could all be the root causes of their erectile dysfunction), they could already be at risk of having a heart attack or a stroke.

Though the root problem could be considered more difficult to identify and treat than taking that little blue pill, it’s ultimately the only sustainable, long-term solution, and it could save your health (or even your life)!

However, if you are in need of a quick fix while you’re trying to figure out what that root cause could be, there are plenty of alternatives to Viagra that don’t pose the same health risks.

Here’s a list of all-natural alternatives to Viagra:

L-arginine and Pycnogenol

L-arginine is a non-essential amino acid that is important during times of trauma or stress. During these times, the body is unable to produce as much as it needs, and so taking this supplement while you’re stressed is often beneficial. What’s more, studies have found that taking this amino acid supplement can treat erectile function.

It has been found to perform well when taken in combination with pycnogenol. One study involving men experiencing erectile dysfunction found that taking these two supplements together restored participants’ sexual ability to 80% in about a month. After only a few months, 92.5% of the men experienced a normal erection.

Red Ginseng

This incredible herb has been used to improve erectile dysfunction for centuries, and as it turns out, there’s now science to support the herbal wisdom behind it.

2012 study published in the International Journal of Impotence Research concluded that red ginseng can be used as an alternative to erectile dysfunction medication, and another review published in the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) determined that red ginseng could improve erectile dysfunction and sexual performance, though further research is required.

Maca

Maca is well-known for being nature’s own powerful aphrodisiac. In a study on patients with mild erectile dysfunction, maca was found to produce a “small but significant effect” on both the participants’ general and sexual wellbeing.

You could try adding some maca to your morning smoothies or beverages, or even take a supplement. Plus, maca is an excellent source of vitamin C, iron, potassium, and copper, so you’ll be loading up on nutrients in addition to boosting your sex drive.

Saffron

That’s right: That expensive member of your herbs and spices cabinet can also aid men who suffer from erectile dysfunction! One study found that saffron works surprisingly quickly, showing “a positive effect on sexual function with increased number and duration of erectile events seen in patients with ED even only after taking it for ten days.”

Tribulus terrestris

Tribulus terrestris is a plant often used in Ayurvedic medicine, as the root and fruits are said to benefit both male virility and general wellbeing. A study published in NCBI suggests that tribulus terrestris can be beneficial in treating men who experience erectile dysfunction.

Studies in primates, rabbits, and rats have yielded some promising results, with Tribulus terrestris being found to increase some sex hormones and effectively treating mild and moderate cases of erectile dysfunction.

Reduced Intake of Meat and Fried Foods

Some of the worst foods for your heart include meat and fried foods. Foods high in animal fat, sodium, and unhealthy oils pose serious risk to your heart and can also worsen your blood circulation, a necessary aspect of getting an erection in the first place.

As it turns out, erectile dysfunction could signify underlying heart problems, so eating “heart healthy” foods is a necessary component of good sexual health as well. Try swapping the animal protein for some plant-based protein, cutting the dairy, and ditching the fast food!

Essential Oils

There are a number of essential oils that can be used to reduce stress, increase sex drive/libido, and lower blood pressure, all of which could potentially affect erectile function. Ylang ylang, rose, and lavender essential oils are all really great at reducing stress and in some cases lowering blood pressure, too.

Spicier scents like cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove can aid in increasing sex drive and improving sexual function, and nutmeg can also improve blood circulation, an important part of getting an erection.

Final Thoughts

As with many other pharmaceuticals, taking Viagra clearly has its advantages and disadvantages. Sure, it might improve your sex life in the short term, but at what cost? Maybe you’ll take Viagra and never experience any negative side effects, but at the end of the day, there’s no guarantee of that.

Any ailment or disease that manifests in the body is always a sign of sickness or stress, and this includes erectile dysfunction; if everything is operating well in your body, then you will not run into any operational issues.

This applies for many health issues, and I encourage you to continue on your journey in searching for the root cause of all of your health problems!

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Awareness

Tips To Improve Your Self Love & Help Shift Your Relationship With Your Partner

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Photo by CMDR Shane on Unsplash

In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Psychologist Dr. Eli Finkel developed helpful “love hacks” to fix your relationship with your partner, but these love hacks can also be tweaked and used to strengthen your relationship to yourself as well.

  • Reflect On:

    What can you do to improve your relationship? Sometimes it requires some self work, and looking inward at oneself.

Self love can be a difficult subject for many people to address, especially because it’s one that society frowned upon for a while. Strengthening your love for yourself was often viewed as vain, and even to this day it’s mistaken as being selfish.

What we sometimes fail to recognize is that you cannot treat others with compassion and kindness if you cannot even extend that same level of respect toward yourself. How can you be expected to make others feel loved if you yourself feel incredibly unloved, or worse, unworthy of love?

By increasing your own self love, you simultaneously strengthen your ability to connect with others. Being honest and vulnerable with yourself can be difficult, but it’s necessary for growing your self love. By feeling our emotions completely and being more compassionate with them, we develop a greater ability to empathize and be vulnerable with others, thus increasing connectivity in our relationships.

So, where do we start on our journeys? Psychologist Dr. Eli Finkel developed helpful “love hacks” to fix your relationship with your partner. However, after reading them, I believe that these love hacks can also be tweaked and used to strengthen not only your romantic relationships, but your relationship to yourself as well. Of course, love isn’t a “one size fits all” subject, but certainly these could help you along your journey!

Physical Touch 

The first “love hack” involves physical touch. According to Dr. Finkel, simply touching your partner can help to increase connectivity between the two of you, even if it’s just holding hands. This experiment found that couples who were told to touch one another while watching a video felt more confident in their partner and more loved in comparison to those who were instructed not to touch one another.

Physical touch can work in increasing your own self love and feeling of well-being too, regardless of whether or not you have a romantic partner. Even just hugging another human being can make you literally healthier and happier. When you hug someone or even just hug yourself, you release oxytocin, otherwise known as the “love hormone,” which can improve heart health, decrease stress levels, and more.

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Don’t Assume the Worst

Even if you’re super optimistic, occasionally our minds jump to the worst possibility. Whenever this happens, recognize that you are jumping to a conclusion that may not be the truth, and that there’s no way of knowing the truth until it’s discovered. So, you might as well not waste your time worrying about your partner, your job, or whatever else you’re stressing over.

Sure, it’s totally natural to weigh the possibilities, but if a story you’ve created in your mind is causing you unnecessary stress, then it’s probably best to just let that go. If you find that you easily assume the worst in situations, there’s a technique I discovered through listening to a Kevin Trudeau podcast called “cancel-cancel.”

Basically, you allow yourself to live in your stress for a few moments and imagine the absolute worst possible scenario. Then, when you’ve completely envisioned it, you yell “cancel-cancel.” You literally communicate to yourself that you want to cancel that thought, and that you will not allow it to become your reality. Even just screaming can be super empowering, let alone telling yourself that you refuse to believe your own pessimism!

Picture Conflict From an “Outside Perspective”

Sometimes, when we’re so wrapped up in our emotions, we come at everything from a state of “victim consciousness.” This is a term used by Michael Bernard Beckwith, and it basically refers to a state of consciousness in which you always think “poor me” or ask “why me?”

When we’re assuming the role of the victim, it becomes difficult to empathize with the individual we’re having a disagreement with. Try to imagine yourself in the other person’s shoes as best you can, and recognize that sometimes you may not know the full picture. That individual could easily just be projecting their emotions onto you rather than dealing with their emotions themselves.

Instead of matching anger with anger, try meeting it with compassion. Why fight fire with fire when you could literally put it out by using compassion and love? Don’t express anger toward the other person. Instead, ask them why they’re feeling so angry and upset in the first place. Sometimes, when people lash out at us, it’s really a cry for help.

When we take a third party role, it allows us to really see things from a bigger picture. This is helpful in not only romantic relationships, but in all relationships as well, including those that we hold with ourselves.

If I get upset, I’ll often ask myself what the root cause of my anger or sadness is, and then put things into perspective. Do I really need to be wasting my time complaining about the small things, or would I rather live in a healthier and happier state by focusing on the things I love and that truly matter, and not sweating the small stuff?

To be clear, I am not suggesting you suppress your emotions, as it’s important to feel them out. But “letting go” and taking an objective approach is another way to help you understand your emotions better and truly connect deeper with yourself and your partner.

One of the best ways to improve your relationships is by creating more self awareness in yourself. Take CE’s 5 Days of You Challenge to explore yourSELF deeper.

Make a Gratitude List 

I can confidently say that when I started to make a gratitude list, my life drastically changed for the better and my self love strengthened rapidly. By writing down all of the things, people, places, etc. that you’re grateful for, you begin to focus on all of the incredible parts of your life and the beauty within this universe, rather than the darkness.

Of course, duality exists for a reason, and it’s important that you face your hardships head on. It’s equally as important, however, that you recognize how incredibly blessed you are to be alive and living your life. If you have difficulty listing off numerous things you’re grateful for, you can start with the stuff we often perceive as being “small” but are actually so incredibly important, like our breath, fresh water, food, and other necessities.

To apply this to your relationship, Dr. Finkel suggests writing down a list of things your partner has done to truly invest in your relationship. What are you grateful for that your partner has done?

Accept a Compliment 

Dr. Finkel suggests recalling a time that your partner complimented you, and take not of how you felt when you received it. What does your partner appreciate about you? Often times, we create these fake stories in our heads of why we’re “unlovable,” so by establishing why your partner loves you and accepting that, it could in turn improve your relationship with your partner and with yourself.

If you’re single like me, you could try either giving yourself a compliment or recalling a time you felt loved and appreciated thanks to a compliment. I’m not necessarily referring to a typical compliment like “you look pretty,” but rather a comment that deeply touched your soul and made you feel loved, whether that be a love you felt for yourself or a love you felt from another.

Try just writing down one thing you love about yourself. It could be anything, but recognize that there are so many reasons that you are incredible, starting with the fact that you’re alive. Did you know that there was only a one in four hundred trillion chance that you’d be here right now with your exact DNA? Now that’s a reason to love yourself: beating the insane odds of your very existence.

Celebrate the Small Victories 

Dr. Finkel suggests that whenever your partner shares something with you that he/she is excited about, get excited over it too! Sometimes people are so passive towards their partner’s accomplishments, as well as their own accomplishments. that they forget it’s okay to express excitement. You find five bucks on the floor? Great, let’s celebrate! Your partner had an awesome presentation at work today? Let’s rejoice!

This reminded me a lot of Neil Pasricha’s Book of Awesome, in which he highlights some of the awesome moments in life that so many of us fail to recognize. The person standing in line in front of you bought your coffee? Awesome! A random person came up to you and asked for a high five? Awesome! Your grandfather asked you to play a game of cribbage with him? Awesome!

We let so many of life’s most “awesome” moments pass by us without even recognizing the sheer magic within them. Sometimes it’s the small stuff that really makes life so grand. Celebrate the small stuff, people.

Final Thoughts

Remember, self love is not a destination; odds are that you won’t just reach a point where you love every single thing about yourself forever. It’s completely natural to cast a bit of doubt upon yourself or question your actions and decisions occasionally, and that can actually be a huge part of your growth process. As you’re learning and growing as a person, your self love is bound to shift and evolve with you as time goes on.

Self love is a journey, one that requires constant attention and care. Don’t just tell yourself you love yourself once; remind yourself of how incredible you are over and over again, even if you don’t believe it. Tell yourself that until you start to believe it, and then continue to remind yourself of that so your self love can grow even stronger.

By having compassion for yourself, you can extend more compassion to others. Study after study has shown that the happiest people are those who not only extend a helping hand to others, but will also take the time to use both of their hands to help themselves.

No matter where you’re at in life, whether you have a partner or you’re single, or if your self love is relatively high or low on the spectrum, I think we could all agree that there’s no such thing as “too much love.” So, let’s work at spreading more love throughout the world, and let’s accept that in order to do so, we need to start with building up our own self love first.

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