Most of us need reminders of how valuable it is to make time for self-care.
If you’re here, maybe you need those reminders daily – because someone or something else always needs your attention.
Early on, the world trains us to put the urgent before the important.
And self-care is just not critical enough—until it is.
If that sounds familiar, we’ve collected 31 self-care mantras to help you get back on track.
How and When to Use Affirmations for Self Care
You’re about to learn some new favorite mantras for self-care. And once you do, here are some ideas for making the most of them:
- Turn a favorite mantra into a poster;
- Make a self-care vision board using one or more affirmations;
- Order a custom mug with the self-care affirmation of your choice;
- Add your favorite to an affirmation app;
- Create a self-care music playlist with a mantra as its title.
There are many creative ways to reinforce these affirmations, so you feel more inclined to act on them.
We recommend you say them out loud (if possible) first thing in the morning to set the tone for the day and before you go to bed to plant them into your subconscious while you sleep.
31 Self-Care Affirmations to Treat Yourself with Love
Read through the positive self-care words to find the ones that resonate with you most. Write them down in your journal or put them in the notes on your iPhone, and set a reminder to use them every day.
1. I treat myself with the same compassion I want to show others.
Think of why you treat other people with compassion and take a moment to remind yourself that your life and your needs are just as important. And self-compassion is an indispensable prerequisite to compassion for others.
2. My body deserves good, healthy food, so I make that a priority.
It’s not about maintaining your usefulness so much as giving your body what it needs because your whole being deserves compassion and kindness. And because neglecting those needs eventually catches up in a big way.
3. I give myself permission to do something fun to destress.
You deserve to make fun an essential part of your life. Everyone needs time out to simply enjoy being alive and pursue their personal interests. You have a right and even a need to do things that lighten your load.
4. I give myself permission to spend a little more time on personal hygiene.
Whether that means spending an extra few minutes in the shower to enjoy the water or putting more time into skincare (moisturizing, applying cosmetics, etc.), give yourself the personal attention only you can give yourself.
5. I enjoy my own company and spending time with myself.
Committing to a long-term relationship with someone else when you can’t enjoy your own solitary company is a recipe for trouble. Give yourself a chance to find out who you are when no one else is around.
6. I set healthy boundaries and am not afraid to assert them.
Everyone needs boundaries, and everyone has a right to have those boundaries respected by others. Practice saying no and standing up for yourself even when it feels “selfish,” simply because something in you needs that.
7. I’m learning to love myself as I am.
Practice loving yourself with small but meaningful actions as well as words. You don’t have to shout from the rooftops that you love yourself unconditionally. Show yourself in the way you spend your time and in the way you talk to yourself.
8. I let go of habits holding me back and choose healthier ones.
We all pick up habits that, at some point, we realize haven’t been serving us. Once you identify your self-sabotaging habits, give yourself permission to replace them with habits that set you free and help you come alive.
9. I deserve to treat myself with patience as I learn from my mistakes and grow.
Anything worth doing is worth doing badly. So if things don’t turn out as you hoped, learn what you can from your mistakes and try again. Your timeline is your own.
10. I have a right to do whatever I want with my own hair.
How you style your own hair is part of how you express yourself. So what if someone—even someone whose opinion matters to you—doesn’t like the idea and tries to stop you. Sometimes, defiance is a gift.
11. I deserve to be more than someone’s princess or someone’s rock; I deserve to be wanted.
You have a right to want a partner who looks at you with all the kinds of love that belong to a loving, romantic relationship. You deserve to be loved by someone who sees you.
12. I have every right to say no to something that makes me feel uncomfortable.
If something makes you feel used or undervalued, you have every right to say, “No.” And no one is allowed to force something on you that feels like a violation or reduces you to an object.
13. I honor my need for rest and refreshment.
Just as you honor those needs in others, listen to your body when it tells you it needs a break and a chance to do something relaxing or restorative, whether that’s sleep, playing music, or spending time with a favorite hobby.
14. I value my mental and emotional health.
You deserve to invest time and energy in your mental and emotional health and well-being. And daily self-care is essential to that.
Make time to check in with yourself and never be afraid to admit you need help working through something.
15. Asking for help or comfort doesn’t make me weak.
You have a right to go after and receive the help you need to grow as a person or deal with the pain and grief that have been weighing you down. Needing doesn’t make you weak.
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16. Sometimes, I need to cry, so I let myself do that.
Allowing yourself to cry and release pent-up emotions is healthier than trying to hold it all in for fear of being seen as weak or manipulative. Find someone who encourages you to cry when you need to.
17. I take regular breaks to improve my energy levels and focus.
Everyone needs regular breaks to refresh themselves. Taking those breaks not only helps you restore your energy and focus but also reminds you that, ultimately, you and your health are more important than the work you’re doing.
18. I love and accept my body, and I give it the rest, exercise, and nourishment it needs.
Regular exercise is good for your overall physical and mental health but shouldn’t be sought as a precondition to accepting and loving yourself.
19. I honor my commitments to myself. I don’t cancel self-care to please others.
If you honor your commitments to others, you should be just as firm in your commitment to yourself. Don’t allow someone else’s idea of what you should do to force you to cancel your self-care to please them.
20. I make time every day to nourish my body, mind, and soul.
Self-care is an everyday thing. Because, like everyone else, you have a body, mind, and soul that require daily nourishment. No one should make you feel guilty for prioritizing daily self-care.
21. I speak to myself with love and kindness.
The habitual thoughts you don’t analyze can hold more power than you think. So it’s worth time and energy to pay attention to your self-talk and replace toxic phrases with positive or neutral ones.
22. I deserve to be at peace. I forgive myself as I forgive others.
No one wants to spend their life angry with others; it’s exhausting. And no one wants to spend years stuck reliving their failures and mistakes. Forgiveness doesn’t mean you’re not allowed to acknowledge the hurt.
23. I value my time and energy.
It’s your time and energy (physical, mental, and emotional). Yes, you can agree to commit some of your time and energy to meet the needs of others. But you and you alone have the right to make that commitment on your behalf.
24. I have a right to say “No” to others and “Yes” to myself.
Allow yourself to say “Yes” to yourself when you need time for self-care, even when other people criticize you for it.
Get comfortable saying “No,” to someone other than yourself.
25. My daily self-care is worth making time for.
Other people’s preferences don’t trump your right to prioritize self-care. Making time for it every day helps you grow in self-awareness and compassion for yourself and others.
26. I make time for reading good books because they feed my mind and lift me up.
Make a reading list for yourself, drawing ideas from people whose taste in books you trust, and make time every day for reading, even if it’s only 15 minutes at a time.
27. I’m always learning, and I make time for learning more about my interests.
Celebrate what you’ve learned and how far you’ve come. And continue to prioritize your learning and development by pursuing your interests and trying new things. Your interests don’t need to be popular to be worthwhile.
28. I’m well-rested and full of energy because I prioritize a healthy sleep schedule.
Giving your body the rest it needs is something to be proud of. You’re not being “soft” or self-indulgent; you’re being smart. And your brain and the rest of your body will repay you for the investment.
29. I am strong in mind, body, and spirit.
You’re stronger than you think, even if that strength isn’t apparent to others. And making self-care a daily priority helps you grow stronger in more than one way.
30. I don’t impose constant positivity on my thoughts; sometimes, neutrality is more helpful.
Inauthentic positivity can do more harm than good. If neutrality feels truer, it’s okay to simply acknowledge reality with something like, “It is what it is,” or “This is where I am right now.”
31. I deserve more than the bare minimum of love, respect, and connection.
You probably want more than the bare minimum for others, too. Everyone has both a need and a right to be loved unconditionally, treated with respect, and feel wholly and intimately connected with someone.
Now that you’ve looked through all 31 self-care affirmations, which ones spoke most clearly to you? And which will you repeat to yourself today?