It’s not a secret that I’ve dealt with severe anxiety for almost my entire life. It’s affected my work, relationships and it can be debilitating at times. While my anxiety stems from deeper rooted issues, it doesn’t help that I used to power through by just working endless hours and avoiding myself.

My belief system was off.

  1. I believed that powering through and working endless hours to get my mind off my anxiety, would make it go away.

  2. I believed that taking time for myself to face these issues was selfish.

  3. I believed that it was a waste of time to put myself first because I’m young and can put myself first later in life.


By living my life in that toxic belief system, I was doing myself more damage. I was INCREASING my levels of anxiety because I wasn’t facing the issue. I wasn’t taking care of myself emotionally because I didn’t love myself.

Not only was my work suffering, but my relationships were suffering and more importantly, I was suffering.

So, I did what made me uncomfortable. I started putting myself first.

I began implementing strict routines to help build up my confidence and shift my mindset.

If I could start loving myself, then I could make decisions that best aligned with my goals for the future.

If I wanted to live a happy and fulfilling life, then I needed to take care of myself, so that I am capable of believing that I am WORTHY of love. Whether that love came from work, relationships or myself.

At the end of the day, in order to reach my full potential, make an impact and live a fulfilling life, it had to start with ME!

This is what could help to reduce that anxiety. This is what reduced my anxiety. This was my realization after many years suffering from severe anxiety!



For some reason, putting ourselves first feels selfish. That’s a bit of a generalization, but super relatable. I’m one of those people that puts myself last, but when I do, I end up getting burnt out. I end up having panic attacks and facing extreme amounts of stress that are harmful to my mental health.

When I put myself first, I am able to make better decisions that positively impact those around me.

It’s all how we choose to look at it. Instead of thinking that putting yourself first takes time away from more important things, shift your belief system.

In order to shift your belief system, you have to take a step back and adjust your mindset.

Realize the benefits of loving yourself.

Those who don’t love themselves are full of anger, depression, anxiety, loneliness and often act out because they are unhappy. Things are always going to happen to us in life, but when stress or negative emotions begins to build up and you aren’t a priority, it shows.

Negative emotions aren’t bad. They are only bad if you allow them to be bad, which is where loving yourself comes into play.



Whether that was by taking 10 minutes to meditate in the morning or scheduling in a pilates class a few times per week.

Think about the process as scheduling an appointment with yourself. Kind of like a date!

When you start doing things that make YOU feel good, you end up doing better in life! Treating yourself better boosts your happiness, confidence and allows you to maintain and grow relationships.

You can start wherever it feels natural.

For me, it started with a morning routine. The way that I start my day impacts the outcome of my day. It impacts how I handle situations throughout the day and the decisions I make. If I can start my day with positivity and feeling good, I’ll be able to better serve those around me.

Got it?

If you are struggling, start by journaling.

Grab a pen and paper ( or a notebook ) and write out the things that make YOU feel good.

  • What you enjoy

  • What makes you happy

  • Your hobbies

  • …and anything that brings happiness to your life

Then, figure out how you can incorporate those things into your daily life.

Pedro and I both have an intense work ethic. Our life is dedicated to our work and we both get stressed out to the max at times. This definitely affects our relationship and can be extremely unhealthy.

Having self care routines in place help me to face that stress and reduce my anxiety. Pedro has his own as well.

If I didn’t have those routines ( and you have to find something that works best for you ), then I would be stuck in my old patters of letting it build up and CONTROL ME.

…not to mention, dictate my relationship.

Instead, I take control, put myself first because loving myself leads to a better outcome!

…and I’m a NO EXCUSES kind of girl. It doesn’t matter how busy you are. Busy people can make time for self care too!




Loving yourself, taking time for yourself and investing in YOU can positively impact MANY areas of your life. This isn’t just about routines and mediation.

I want to throw something out there since I just brought up my relationship with Pedro and the impact of stress. This is a taboo topic, but stress, anxiety and lack of self love can affect our sexual health. It doesn’t matter if you are single or in a relationship. This is a topic that so many people want answers to.

If you’re in a relationship and the other person isn’t “in the mood,” it might make you feel bad. It might make you feel like your partner isn’t interested or it could take a toll on your self confidence. Even if you are single, you might be struggling with a low sex drive. But, realize that stress and lack of self love can be an underlying factor, you know? It isn’t always personal!

I recently had Dr. Lauren Fogel Mersy, Certified Sex Therapist and Psychologist on the SHE DID IT podcast to talk about all things relationships and sex. You should definitely give that a listen because sexual wellness IS self love.

On this episode, I talked about a brand that I came across called, plusOne. This brand is encouraging other women to indulge in a little self love in a different way.

plusOne is on a mission to empower women to embrace their sexual wellness, and I'm all for it because it’s human nature! It’s also the FIRST EVER BRAND to make high quality sexual wellness devices and products that are available at stores like Target and Walmart.

Honestly, sexual wellness can help you live a healthier life. It's an act of self care and it can increase dopamine, reduce stress and improve your sleep. It's also an act of self love! It can help you learn to love yourself and help with current and future relationships.

I want to help make sex not such a taboo topic, which is really what I admire about plusOne. The truth is that there's nothing wrong talking about and giving in to our sexual wellness.

Masturbation with sexual wellness devices can also be a great conversation starter in the bedroom to help you and your partner communicate your needs.

You should definitely check them out!


While I covered many bases here around this topic, I want you to remember that self love comes in many forms. It’s not selfish. It’s necessary. It’s important. You have to find what works for you.

I’m here to share what works for me and to let you know that if you want to live a happy and fulfilling life, you need to put yourself first!

Because when you do… you become the best version of yourself, not only for you but for others as well!

I can tell you from my own personal experience, that putting myself first in the morning has drastically changed how I view myself.

  1. I have more confidence.

  2. I make better decisions.

  3. I’m able to take better care of those around me.

  4. My relationships have improved.

If it weren’t for shifting my mindset and belief system, I would be in that same negative rut.

Give it a try! Find what works for you. Put yourself first. It actually pays off.

Did you find this valuable? Let me know in the comments and thank you so much for reading!

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Sydney Nanberg20 Comments