In a world where we are always trying to live up to expectations and make others happy, we often forget about ourselves. Forgetting to sometimes put your own needs first, and making sure to take time for yourself, can leave you feeling down. Showing yourself some self-love, and learning to respect and honor your own needs is so important, especially at this point in your life. College is stressful and busy, and taking time to focus on what's really important is a great way to make yourself a little happier!

1. Be nice to yourself. 

My mom always tells me I'm my own worst critic, and I've come to find that this is true for a lot of my friends as well. Many of us forget to take time to be proud of our accomplishments and instead focus on the negative. Learning to love yourself for what you can do and what you are doing is so important, so remember to be kind to yourself!

2. Stop comparing yourself to others.

Often times, when I begin comparing myself to other people, I start feeling worse about myself. My day can go from great to terrible in a matter of seconds because I start to doubt my own worth in comparison to others. Learning to love yourself outside of how it compares to other people can help relieve a sense of the burden of never feeling good enough. We are all unique and amazing in our own ways.

3. Spend time outside. 

For almost my whole life, I have hated the outdoors. The humidity, the heat, and not to mention all the bugs, always made me prefer the indoors. However, as I've gotten older, I've come to realize that spending time out in nature and learning to appreciate the beauty and greatness that surrounds us, is truly indescribable. Not to mention that vitamin D really does make you happier and healthier.

4. Learn to say no. 

If you're anything like me, you might easily get persuaded into doing things you don't really want to do. I always feel guilty canceling plans or telling my friends I don't want to do things their way, but there is no need for this! We only have one life to live, and we should spend it doing things we really love and enjoy. Don't be afraid to put yourself first and tell others no from time to time.

5. Stay positive. 

Even though it's cliche, I truly believe that when life gives you lemons, you have to make lemonade. Nothing in life is ever perfect, but if you focus too much on the negatives, you are only hurting yourself. Holding unnecessary grudges, or spending time feeling sorry for yourself is hurting you more than you think. Focus on all the positive aspects of your life, and remember that nothing bad is ever permanent, things can always get better.

6. Find a hobby. 

Finding what you are passionate about is not always as easy as it sounds, but finding a few hobbies that can keep you occupied and make you feel productive and happy, are great steps to learning more about yourself. Hobbies can also help you meet like-minded people, who may inspire you in ways you weren't expecting.

7. Speak up. 

If you are feeling especially down, don't be afraid to tell someone about how you are feeling. Your problems and worries are never a burden, and people close to you will agree. Talking about your feelings can often lift a heavy weight off your shoulders, and can ease the burden you are carrying around. Learning to let go of bad vibes and guilt is so important when it comes to moving forward and focusing on your happiness.

8. Be yourself. 

Learning to be yourself is one of the hardest things, but it's so important. Being comfortable in your own skin, and being confident in who you are will make you feel so much better. Everyone has insecurities, but the only opinion that matters is your own. Live your life for you, and don't be afraid to express yourself for fear of others' judgment.

9. Surround yourself with those who love you. 

In life, it truly doesn't matter how many friends you have, or how popular you are. What really matters is what type of friends and people are in your life. Surrounding yourself with people who lift you up, support you, and encourage you to be the best you, is another great way to cut out negativity and increase your happiness.

10. Do things for yourself.

At the end of the day, the only one who is living your life is you. You have to deal with the ups and downs, so do things for yourself. Don't strive to reach goals if you aren't truly doing it for yourself. Doing things for other people is great, but is important to know the line between only trying to please others for their approval, and doing something because it is what you really want.