Not many things get us out of bed sub-7AM on a Saturday morning. Today, however, I had my heart set on doing something special for myself.
This morning marked the 13th week post wrist surgery that had thrown my yoga practice (and workout practice in general) WAY out of whack... So out of whack, in fact, that it was non-existent. So, feeling confident in the way that this beautiful, strong body had done a more than sufficient job of healing itself, I was itching to get my butt back on that mat. (ON A SIDE NOTE: speaking of beautiful and strong bodies, lets be honest... Our bodies are also so much smarter than we give them credit for... I mean, we put them through absolute CRAP on a daily basis (sitting too much, feeding them the wrong foods, not moving them enough, dumping chemicals into them in the form of alcohol and medicines, just generally putting them in sketchy situations, etc.) and all they want to do is to just bring themselves back to a harmonious balance. Deep, yes, but something to think about... Lets just give a moment to give our bodies and their intricate systems a round of applause <3)
Anyway, back to my morning. 6:30AM came up really quickly but when the alarm sounded, I jumped out of bed like a kid on Christmas Day. I dusted off and threw on my favorite Lululemons, shook the cobwebs off of my poor mat and off I was! The frigid 14 degree weather here in southeastern PA did give me a swift slap in the face, but sometimes in life we need those.
My favorite yoga studio is not so close to my home. Typically a 20 minute drive at this time of the day sounds about average, so this was the perfect time to set an intention for my practice. This, I have found, is a crucial step in improving my yoga game because it gives you a reason to get up and strap your big girl pants on when your alarm goes off and you want to stay wrapped up like a burrito in your ultra fuzzy blankey. It also reminds you of why you are even there in the first place (ie: when you are in the middle of half-pigeon and it feels like your leg literally just popped away from the rest of your body and you're just like, "why am I here again?"). So I am going to share something with you guys and this is not something that I share often... actually never, because when you’re setting an intention you really have to come face to face with your vulnerabilities and who seriously what’s to throw that out to strangers? So here is your inside access into my vulnerable side at the moment...
Self love is indeed a very loaded, yet general intention. Self love can be anything from taking enough time to rest when your body needs it, taking care of your mental health, feeding your body the correct food that it needs to run properly, telling yourself positive affirmations on the daily, the list goes on and on for days.
For me today, my intention was to manifest self love through the form of concentration. I've been making SO MANY EXCUSES lately for things that I know I should be doing but.... facebook.... instagram... browsing Amazon.... YouTube... Geeze, Lydia, get it together! I just seem to get into these cycles where I'm on track with everything that I deem priority (healthy diet, reading/continuing to educate myself daily, exercising daily, and running two businesses smoothly), but these little devils in the form of distraction always seem to come sneaking up behind me and take me to the dark abyss of distraction. And once you are in the dark abyss of distraction, YOU, my friend, are the only one who can pull you back out in the long run.
For me, yoga is like the light that you see while down in the dark abyss of distraction. Shining from above, you know it is what is going to lead you back to being where you want to be, but... later because these cat videos are just too adorable! Its always the beacon of light that comes to seemingly rescue me when I am not being the version of myself that I know I can be. Something about connecting your intention with breath and movement of your body to get you through the tough areas of your practice really gets your mind back on track, which is why I love to keep yoga as a daily ritual in my life. Usually this intention sticks with me for the remainder of the day and trickles into other areas of my life where I may need it.
Let this photo speak truths for you. This is a photo of how self love kept me on track after my yoga practice:
Ordering a glorious açaí bowl like I did from Be Well Cafe in Huntingdon Valley, PA is one of the billions of ways you can continue your self love intention.
**Note: remember to keep it FULL of love by choosing to keep dairy out of the bowl <3**
Knowing that no one else was harmed in the making of your self-love fest breakfast takes the intention to another level!
Also, take a little time to appreciate the small things in your day that bring you joy, no matter what it is! Self love is so important and in many more ways that I can express to you.
Do you have any ways that you show yourself a little love on the daily? Do you think that you take enough time for yourself? Do you think it is selfish to practice too much self love? What is your go-to intention? What is the intention that you find yourself coming to on a frequent basis? Let me know in the comments below, I'd love to hear from you guys! Remember, the yoga/meditation/self-actualization community runs STRONG. We are all here for one another, always.
Ahimsa and Namaste,