I am guilty of showering my friends with affection, yet hesitating to do the same for myself. I am not alone in this struggle. Many people don't take the time to practice self-love. Self-love is not loving what society tells you to love, but everything you can.

This might seem like a daunting task, so here are 5 simple ways to love yourself.

1. Forgive yourself

It's so easy to hate on yourself for the mistakes you make, whether they were made yesterday or six years ago. Because it's so easy, it seems like the natural course of action to berate ourselves when we fall short.

In an interview with Spoon University, Hannah Hart shares that when we make a mistake, there's probably a lesson to be learned from it. Instead of beating yourself up, try forgiving yourself and focusing on the lesson instead. 

#SpoonTip: Buy your tickets and catch Hannah Hart at Brainfood, October 14th!

2. Encourage yourself

Be your own biggest fan! That way, you know you always have someone who is on your side. Whether you're doing something you're good at or trying something new, remember you are who you should be rooting for!

Looking for more way ways you can encourage yourself? Try taking five minutes out of your day and designate those 300 seconds to evaluate how you are doing great or list 3 good things you did during your day right before you go to bed. Maybe before you say something negative about yourself, think about how you could frame the thought in a more positive way.

3. Challenge yourself

You can love yourself while wanting to improve yourself. Even at the same time! Have you always wanted to run a 5K? Do you have a desire to learn how to cook? Do you have your eye on an internship that would get you in the door of something you love?

To get over that hump of "oh, I could never do BLANK," you have to accept the risks and try anyway. Courage is not being unafraid, it's being afraid and trying anyway.

4. Take care of yourself

You are incredibly important, so don't be afraid to treat yourself, you're in it for the long haul. Drink water. Eat vegetables. Exercise. Sleep. Do what you need to do to take care of your mental health. You're the only you that exists so treat yourself like the rarity you are.

This can be difficult, but practicing what you preach to your friends about self-love will have wonderful benefits in the long run, and your body and mind will thank you.

5. Embrace yourself

You are amazingly human. You have flaws, you have strengths, you have the potential to change the world by being your wonderful self. There are millions of different ways you can love yourself, but practicing self-love in general is the ultimate goal. So, however you can best do that, whether it's setting goals for yourself throughout the day or taking time to take 4 deep breaths 4 times a day, aim to love and appreciate yourself.