International Natural Day is celebrated every year on February 13, a day before Valentine’s Day to remind you to love yourself without seeking affirmation from anybody else. Also called International Day of Self-love, it is celebrated to dilute the emphasis on conformance to society’s expectations. It is a day to remind everyone that you ought to love yourself because you are beautiful in your very own unique way. So, on this Day, clap your hands and raise a toast for the most important and beautiful person in your life — you.
History of International Natural Day
Often, we feel the pressure of conforming to the popular or common notion of beauty to earn the appreciation, love, and approval of people around us. Culturally, we attach much importance to getting love from others, forgetting that our most important relationship is with ourselves. If we don’t love ourselves, nobody will find us worthy of being loved. If we keep denigrating ourselves, we may end up sabotaging our lives and relationships. Apart from toxic relationships, it could result in substance abuse, self-deprecatory behavior, workaholism, extreme guilt, and low self-esteem.
Also called International Day of Self-love, International Natural Day is celebrated on February 13 every year to encourage individuals with insecurities and uncertainties to shed their self-doubts and celebrate themselves unconditionally. Sanah Jivani, founder and C.E.O. of Love Your Natural Self Foundation, spurred on by a personal event, created the day and her foundation.
In grade seven, Jivani was horrified when one morning, she found almost all her hair on her pillow. A condition called Alopecia Universalis resulted in her losing all her hair. She lost all her hair and, with it, her self-esteem. Her appearance provoked ridicule and bullying from people around her. It fed her insecurities and sent her on a spiraling cycle of self-hatred. Jivani realized that demonizing herself was not helping and started to repair her self-image by redefining her parameters of beauty. She kept reminding herself that she was beautiful in her own way, for which she did not need any confirmation from society.
International Natural Day is the next stride in Jivani’s journey to help others acknowledge their natural beauty. The day urges you to strengthen your self-esteem and acknowledge the innate beauty within and around you.
International Natural Day timeline
Jivani creates the Love Your Natural Self Foundation and International Natural Day to encourage people with insecurities to shed their imperfections and celebrate themselves.
Gradually, she becomes a role model for people with insecurities due to outward flaws and, as the founder of her enterprise, Love Your Natural Self Foundation, visits the Nexus Global Youth Summit, 2015, in New York City.
Campus Media, a leading media portfolio for college women in the U.S., recognizes Jivani as one of the 22 most inspiring college women below 22 years of age in the U.S.
After a decade of celebrating imperfections, the day becomes popular in the United States, especially with young people with insecurities due to outward appearance.
International Natural Day FAQs
What do you do on International Natural Day?
You enjoy yourself and do whatever is best for you. It is basically the cheat day for all the things you love.
How did the idea of self-love emerge?
The Beat Generation introduced the concept of self-love in the 1950s. It found increased acceptance through the Hippie era of the 1960s.
What is the secret to self-love?
The secret to self-love is to give yourself a break and love yourself unconditionally.
International Natural Day Activities
Spend some quality ‘me’ time
Do activities about yourself, such as meditating, going for a run, cooking a new dish, or reading a book. If you have company, tell them that they will be on their own today as you want to spend some time with yourself. They can participate as long as they can be completely non-judgmental. Do not look for any approval of what you are doing.
No early morning rushes, no quick showers, no gulping down the smoothie. Take a day off from your daily chores. Make an appointment with a spa or salon and treat yourself to some self-love, never mind, even if it's paid. If that's not possible, lather yourself with that new shower gel you bought recently.
Live in the moment
Watch everything that passes you carefully and try to find the good in it. The baby who coos at you in the subway, the old gentleman who's smiling at you to say good morning, the kids who are playing happily with the street dogs — make a note of how all of them are happy with small things. It'll remind you to count your blessings and be proud of what you have rather than dwelling on what you have lost.
5 Science-based Facts About Self-love
Acceptance makes you happy
Accepting all of yourself makes you happier with your life.
Loving yourself helps you reach your goals
Self-love encourages you to work on your goals.
Self-love stops procrastination
Self-love pushes you to stop procrastinating everything you plan to do.
It helps with mental health
Loving yourself helps you to be mentally stable.
Self-love builds confidence
Loving yourself makes you a confident person.
Why We Love International Natural Day
It is important to love oneself. If we don't love ourselves, we would be incapable of loving anybody. On International Natural Day, we reaffirm our love for ourselves.
It reminds us to be happy in our skin
It is a great day to count your blessings and remind ourselves that we ought to be happy in the situation that we are in. We can be happy about many things, and the day urges us to do that rather than to fret about what we may have lost or don't possess.
For single people, it dispels the Valentine's Day blues
A day before Valentine's Day can be full of despair for single people. When people worldwide are gathering their beloved in their arms, single people may feel ignored and dejected. International Natural Day, celebrated a day before Valentine's Day, helps single individuals to embrace their solitude whole-heartedly.
International Natural Day dates