Self-Love Haul: 6 Products That Help Me Be Really, Really Nice to Myself

I know it sounds crazy, especially because this whole thing only started three or four months ago, but for the first time in my life, I am in love… with myself.

Not to be corny, but it's true: That self-love thing you hear mentally healthy people talk about? I think I've actually figured it out. It didn't come without a price, of course. In the past, when I'd see Pinterest quotes and magazine articles talk about self-love, this notion of being as kind and compassionate with yourself as you would with a best friend resulting in a feeling of overwhelming appreciation for your positive qualities and acceptance of your faults, I was like, yeah, like that exists. It's not as if I'm an especially self-hating person (at least not since I was a teenager); it's simply that for my whole adult life, I've just sort of tolerated myself, passively, as opposed to actively digging the person that I am. But a few months ago, inspired by a series of earth-rocking events, including the breakup of a long-term relationship which challenged my self-esteem like never before, I realized that self-love only seemed impossible to me because I was approaching it with the attitude that the few who had it were just lucky—somehow born confident—and for the rest of us, it simply wasn't in the cards.

But having my life involuntarily turned upside down inspired me to want to take control of my happiness for the first time ever. It made me realize that self-love doesn't just happen to you, like a lightning strike; it's something you have to seek and create for yourself, chipping away at it every day. Of course, everyone's journey to genuinely digging yourself will look different. For some, it will involve therapy or a new exercise routine or meditation or taking up pottery. But for me, it involved a few simple props and exercises that allowed me to shift my perspective on myself and my life in a positive direction. And because I am so much nicer to myself now than I've ever been, I wanted to share those helpful objects with you. Read on to check out my self-love haul: seven self-care products that help me remind myself, hey, I'm kind of great.