Love.

Noun

  1. A strong feeling of affection
  2. A great interest and pleasure in something

Verb

  1. Feel deep affection or sexual love for (someone)

 

Those are the dictionary definitions for a word that a lot of us say every day without much thought as to what it really means.

 

Love is a concept we are all familiar with in one way or another. We love our family and friends, our dog and dancing. We like going out and partying, we love buying new clothes and we love payday. There’s a lot of conversation about loving people or things, stuff. And of course, there’s nothing wrong with that.

 

But it’s a new year; spring is just around the corner. So what does ‘love’ mean in 2017?

 

Here at SUBCULTURED, we want to celebrate love in all its forms, but most importantly we want to celebrate self-love.

 

Perhaps one of the most underrated forms of love, a lot of people find it difficult to love themselves. People feel ashamed or guilty for loving their own bodies, for appreciating their own mental health and wellbeing. There seems to be a stigma around taking the time to take care of yourself before everyone else. Well, 2017 is the year that this has to change.

 

But how do you do it?

 

Think

 

Talk about yourself positively, if you feel good or look good, tell someone! There’s no shame in it. Accept compliments rather than brushing them off, acknowledge your strength and beauty every day.

 

Do

 

When you’ve got that perfect winged liner or a cute new top, take selfies. Take a lot of selfies. You don’t have to post them anywhere (though you should!) but keep them as a reminder for when you don’t feel your best. Enjoy feeling beautiful.

 

Absorb

 

‘Treat Yo Self’. Those immortal words have had a serious impact on our bank accounts. But surrounding yourself with things you love and treating yourself to experiences you’ve been dreaming of is a great way to surround yourself with love everyday.

 

Feel

 

Go out and walk in the sunshine, exfoliate and moisturise your tired skin and take that nap you know you want. Take care of yourself; let yourself be loved.

 

What does love mean in 2017?

 

It still means loving all the things you’ve always loved. No one can replace your closest friends and family. But self-love is a journey, and certainly not an easy one. It takes dedication, devotion to the cause and meticulous practice. You won’t always get it right and sometimes you’ll struggle to love anything about yourself. But 2017 is the year to focus on it. To put yourself first above all others and be the best version of you.

 

 

Text by Holly Butteriss

Picture research by Juliey Pham; featured image by Modacalle.