The concept of love languages commonly refers to the way an individual expresses and receives love from a romantic partner, yet it also encompasses the vital aspect of self-love. What is self-love and how do students on our College Place campus comprehend and implement self-love in their daily lives?
Megan Ronneburg, a junior Spanish and pre-med student, shared that, "To me, self-love means giving yourself the love that you're willing to give to others."  Ronneburg described that "this includes giving yourself the same respect, forgiveness, and support that you would to your best friends, family members, and other loved ones." 
Ronneburg shared, "I practice self-love by giving myself a break when I need it, whether this break is from work, school, people, etc., so that I can step back and look at the big picture before getting lost in details.” 
For Devon Border, a senior English major, self-love implies “just doing what you need in order to not just survive, but thrive.”  The way Border practices self-love depends on the day, but “oftentimes, it’ll be something simple to just get out of my own head.”  Border shared that sometimes this means reading a book or listening to some jazz. Self-love can be found when hanging out with friends or in “learning to enjoy solitude,” pointed out Border. 
Andres Velis, a pre-physical therapy student believes that self-love implies self-care. Velis shared that “self-love and self-care [are] investing in yourself, whether that’s distancing yourself from things or places or people who don’t help you grow and benefit.”  For Velis, the biggest form of self-love is exercise. Exercise can be a workout with weights and bands, but it can also be playing “soccer or volleyball” or “going up into the mountains and hiking or backpacking,” described Velis. 
If you are not sure how to start practicing self-love, then you can consider turning the love languages inwards. This can be done by focusing on quality time, taking care of yourself, gifting yourself experiences, and prioritizing sleep and exercise. Remember that self-love is a journey that takes dedication, devotion, and practice.
As Valentine's Day approaches, let us keep in mind that understanding our love languages is crucial. However, the foundation of all love starts with self-love. Without it, it can be difficult to love others.