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Self-Love in Relationships: 5 Surprising Truths on Why It’s Vital

Self-love in relationships is vital for the health of any relationship. But what if it sounds exhausting? You aren’t sure where to begin or tired of all the hype around people taking bubble baths, getting spa treatments, or going out to eat as a form of “self-love.” Stay tuned as we debunk what self-love in relationships really means.

Hello beautiful friend, my name is Lumalia. I’m a published author (Blooming Upside Down), subconscious tour guide and connection architect, guiding people like yourself back to the truth our wise bodies hold and out of the inherited and cultural impacts we face as humans. 

Often we view things like self-love in relationships in marriages as some taboo topic that can keep us from experiencing the most delicious existence in life. Where we’ve often been dictating where we go. Our brains and bodies love familiar, but what if stepping into something new was as delightful as your favorite thing to do?

What does self-love in a relationship mean & Why is Self-Love important? 

Did you know that if you tell I plant I love you and speak positively to it, it will flourish more? If you talk negatively to a plant, it will die rather quickly.  It’s no surprise that the same is true of us. Being 50% plant DNA and 60% water, the vibrations that come from words directly affect us more than we truly know. 

How we speak to ourselves, our inner thoughts, critiques, concerns, worries, praises, kindness, and affections is how we pour out to others. Sometimes we try our best to filter out the negativity we face internally, and sometimes we are completely and utterly blind to it. Constantly wondering why life is so hard, “bad” things keep happening to us, or why no one understands us. In all honestly, something deep within us has us stuck in these patterns and beliefs. Still, especially in long-term romantic relationships and marriages, we find ourselves speaking more from those inner voices than not. 

Is self-love needed in a relationship? 

couple cudding contemplating self love in relationships on the beach as the sunsets glows on them

The answer is simple, yes. Without self-love, our negative behaviors and harmful inner dialogues can sneak in like mold without knowing it until one of us suddenly gets sick. You become tired from the mold it comes in and destroys your life, just like our inner voices. The consequence of not loving yourself in a relationship is sacrificing yourself and your ability to have emotional and physical intimacy.

But what if you learned to love yourself so deeply that those inner thoughts and subsequent behaviors were love based? You would overflow in those, on to yourself and others, especially in your intimate relationships with partners and spouses.  

This is how self-love affects relationships and the power of self-love in relationships. Without it, we become subjugated to that which came before us. How we were talked to when we were younger, voices from our peers, culturally affected conversations, and so much more. 

Let me tell you the biggest secret of all: you have the power to affect how you view and talk to yourself.

“You have the power to affect how you view and talk to yourself.” - Lumalia text over a female pouring water in a river

This is self-love: knowing your worth, valuing yourself enough to care for yourself while feeling safe within your skin, building a sense of deep trust, setting boundaries, and staying committed to following your passions.

Self-improvement in a relationship can happen in many different ways, but I promise you’ll never regret beginning your journey or diving deeper into it.

What is the Importance of self-love in relationships?

Spoiler Alert: It’s the secret of how to be a better partner in a relationship

Let’s begin with a bit of storytime. I was once in a very unhealthy relationship but was blind to it because of my childhood and cultural inner voices. The toxicity in this relationship caused the initiation of chronic illnesses I’m still recovering from today. It destroyed so much in me that I completely lost myself. I didn’t know the importance of self-love in relationships or marriage until I was forced to figure out how to be in a relationship with myself. I had to go into a relationship with myself to heal and be able to be in any relationships, including friendships and motherhood.

My inner voices were deep in generations of women, religion, and culture that had me thinking and deeply believing that love meant I had to sacrifice and that I was powerless. I felt I had to forget myself to serve my spouse. But in doing so, I lost myself and never received the love I sincerely wanted. 

It wasn’t until I learned I was worthy of my love, caring for all the parts of me in deep pain and suffering, not just physically but emotionally, did I start to realize that self-love was non-negotiable existence in this life. 

Lumalia standing by a waterfall with a serious face, " I am the warrior finally speaking up for everything this body wants and needs"
Click to read my full story

This was my journey into self-love in a relationship. Just like the plant that experienced negativity, I was dying inside. And it was me who needed to bring me back to life, beginning with learning how to love myself.

My story isn’t a solo journey. If you look around at so many relationships, you’ll see this pattern repeating itself everywhere.

(You can read more about my story and how I cured my autoimmune disease and learned to cope with chronic illnesses)

Ready to begin?

How to practice self-love in a relationship & Developing self-love in a relationship

Developing and practicing self-love in a relationship is the same as anyone else, except you may learn to set boundaries faster than someone single. You have someone each day to practice with. 

Relationships are genuinely giant mirrors held up to help us see things we cannot see ourselves. The best ones look in the mirror and grow because of what they see. The most frustrating relationships look in the mirror and blame the reflection. Cheers to beginning to take responsibility, my friend.

"Relationships are mirrors that help us see things we cannot see ourselves. The best ones look in the mirror and grow because of what they see." - Lumalia couple holding hands running with their reflection on water from the ocean with sea rocks in the background

The first step in any self-love journey is to become the most curious creature of your thoughts. Become a student of yourself. Why do I think this? Why do I act this way? When do I feel intense emotions, anger, sadness, overwhelm, grief, numbness? All emotions are beautiful emotions. Learning not to judge them is a baby step in learning to observe them by asking what’s happening inside of me. 

You may even be unable to be yourself inside of a relationship, and how you be yourself in a relationship begins by becoming an observer of who you are so that you can stay in tune with that sacred, authentic piece of yourself.

Pro Tip:

If you love to journal, you can begin taking notes. It can sometimes help to pretend you are a beloved friend, parent, or wise mentor asking you these questions. If you love to think, give yourself space and time to consider these things. It doesn’t have to be long, but it can take 10 seconds to ask. 

You may find yourself being critical of yourself when you do something wrong. How would you treat a young child who did something wrong when they are still learning or doing something? Would you yell? Call them names? Expect them to get it right all the time. Certainly not. In what ways can you re-wire your self-talk?

Then once you’ve noticed how you exist in this world, you can decide how you want to live. 

I know, WAY easier said than done. Please don’t ever forget that self-love is a journey, not a destination. You won’t wake up one day fully decoded from all the programming of being a human on this planet. But each day, you can gain more responsibility for yourself and become more accessible and freer to be an agent of powerful love because you first knew how to give it to yourself. Just like the air mask on the airplane, yours has to go on first before you can ever be of any help to anyone else.

How to focus on yourself while in a relationship and with a family?

Balancing all of life is overwhelming, but understanding the importance of self-love is the first step to taking time alone to navigate it all. However, as you work on yourself in a relationship, you don’t have to do this alone. 

I created a community for people just like you on this journey to become their own healers. Talk therapy is a beautiful tool but not always accessible or the complete picture of what we need as a human species to heal the self-love wounds that hurt every single one of our relationships, especially those closest to us. This is why I made Celebrate Again Membership. I created a free road map for you to begin learning how to step into the observer role as we discussed above and the journey back home out of the cultural and childhood wounds and into the infinite biological wisdom of your sacred body. 

Will you join me? A community of people is here to cheer you along, including myself. I wish I had this when I was healing, but it’s here now, and I cannot wait for you to begin. Begin with my self-awareness quiz.

Shout out to all my fellow mama’s out there. I see you and would love for you to read my Self Care As a Mom blog & talk.

Can a Lack of self-love affect my relationships?

Yes, a lack of self-love can affect your relationships to the point that you can’t love them however you want. Maybe you find yourself repeating the same patterns over and over. Wondering why you cannot let yourself be loved or loved the way you want. This doesn’t have to stay this way. 

By not loving yourself in a relationship, you may be overly critical of yourself, your partner, or your children. As you begin towards gentleness and kindness, not expecting things to be perfect, you may find yourself with more capacity for being kind and gentle and less critical of all those around you. 

When we choose love for ourselves, our whole world benefits. In many cultural agreements, self-love is frowned upon and considered selfish, but it’s the biggest oppressive lie keeping so many in power. Our world becomes stunning when we all understand our worth and let kindness and compassion rule our inner and outer worlds.

Begin your journey into self-love with my self-awareness quiz today.

Here is where you can better yourself in a relationship and make yourself truly happy.

Our bodies are beautiful and hold so many truths that our minds are waiting to understand. Often we’re told to think and reason through things, but in my life journies, I found listening to the facts inside of me more powerful than trying to think my way to love. Join me inside Celebrate Again, as I guide you through self-love using talks, meditations, journaling, and yoga.

As you journey along, check out my self-love quotes for inspiration to get you started today and learn how to live life to the fullest.

Self Love In Relationship Quotes

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About the Author

Lumalia standing near a coastline with her hair blowing in the wind

Hey, I’m Lumalia, the main voice behind Celebrate Again. I call myself a connection architect because I have a deep passion for guiding us all to fall back in love with life through states of beauty, but many of us are far from feeling at home in our own bodies, so we seek to find safety in others. 

Yikes, that’s scary, I know; I did that for three decades, too, until I returned home to myself.

I’m so excited to share with you all I’ve learned and this beautiful journey back home to what makes you absolutely stunning just because you are alive today.


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Healing & Self Growth Upleveled

Join Lumalia’s Bi-Weekly Women’s Gathering & Mind-Body Connection Class: Your Body As Poetry 

It's Time We Become Creators

Take our free self-awareness quiz to get your customized map to find where you can grow. 

Self Care That Makes You Wet

Join Lumalia’s 30-Day Self-Care Challenge beginning October 11, 2023.