Self Love - How to do it
We are bombarded by social media telling us to love ourselves, how self-love is the most important thing we can do for ourselves and others. So what does that mean? Have a candlelit bath, treat ourselves to a massage?
At the same time, we have been bombarded with messages that we are not enough - not beautiful enough, slim enough, round-busted and bootied enough, our teeth aren't white enough, our abs aren't tight enough, our hair isn't slinky enough and our features not even enough, we are not sweet enough, and not patient enough.
My mind has been brain-washed with the not enough culture since I was a little girl and my thinking mind judges and criticises my body daily - I'm down on myself, the weight I've put on, the ageing process I can't stop - grey thinning hair, middle aged spread belly, crepy dry skin and cellulite thighs. I don't like what is happening to me - Its even more important for me to love myself otherwise the self-talk, confidence and body image become so poisonous, I might just end up staying inside a darkened room feeling ugly and over the hill.
I don't feel its easy to get rid of these thoughts completely, just shut them down and love myself - the concept sounds easy but in practice, its so engrained in my attitude to myself.
How to judge myself less!
So what I am focusing on is a lot of changes and the more focus I give this, the more magnified it will become. If I can focus on the lack, the not enough, I can also focus on the gratitude and enough so the practice is more than having a candlelit bath or treating myself to a massage. Its to talk to myself in a different way.
Every time I notice the judging, criticising, lacking, blaming mind, I remind myself that there is another voice I have that rarely gets heard - the voice that tells me how amazing my body is - that my heart loves me and keeps beating no matter what I think or do, that all my systems are balanced enough that I can do whatever I like any time I like - I sleep, I digest food, I can move my body at will, I can coordinate my brain and body so I can move at will, I can see and hear and smell and feel and use my enquiring mind to engage in the awe-inspiring world around me...what gifts that I can even write this, touch type this, spell and make a sentence.
How can I find the voice of my own best friend, the part of me that loves me unconditionally?
Let's do this together:
- Find a place where you can be still and uninterrupted
- Find a position for your body that creates ease, comfort and alertness
- Drop your attention into your body - notice sensation and scan through for what else is beyond the first sensation you notice
- Stay longer, go deeper and deeper, settle more and more...
- Use your hands to touch your own body, to bring your attention to a part of you that is calling for attention
- Feel into your cells, feel into my Self, start to listen deeply
- Who do you go to for advice? Imagine there is a part of you that is very wise, that simply knows without thinking
- Ask that part of you some questions. It may be whispering to you so get close, still and listen, you may be shown colours or shapes or words or sounds or memories or symbols...simply see what you get
I'd love to hear what you get if you wish to share with me! Email me firstname.lastname@example.org
Take care and stay safe,
Judy Hirsh Sampath runs yoga classes, workshops and courses in yoga therapy.