8 Ways to Start Loving Yourself TODAY

_q3agBem04Ae1YewWttNb48Qy1gH11qk0bqJVAkO-poI remember as kids, my sister and I used to wake up to love notes on our bathroom mirror.    My mom would use dry erase markers and write us messages to help us start our days in good spirits. Sometimes it was fancy for a holiday or just simply “Good morning, I love you”.   Over the years, I have kept this tradition in my own daily life to set reminders for the things I am currently working on.   Last year, I was working on “Self Love”.

Self Love is becoming more popular term these days with the growth of the health and wellness industry.   It is so vital and important to take care of yourself and to love yourself so you can authentically share your love with others.   It’s quite magnetic and I believe it is the root of all health.  The more love you can embody, the more you can share your love with others.  One very important note about the gift of love is being able to receive love.  Many of us know how to give it away, but then we resist allowing it to come in.  By falling in love with your self you can start to feel the love within, then sharing and receiving becomes part of the natural ebb and flow.

Here’s are 8 of my many favorite ways to start loving yourself more today!

1. Write yourself love notes! 
Write yourself love notes every day.  Notes can be written on your bathroom mirror or even on sticky pads placed around your workplace, car or home.  I used to look in the mirror in the morning and hear the voice of my inner critic, “you’re too pale, you’re not trim enough, bad hair today, and on and on and on.”   Now I can look in the mirror and hear “you look beautiful today”.   The note completely shifted my perspective and attitude towards my self, making me much brighter and confident throughout the day.   This tool can help you begin to catch your inner critic and shift gears towards a more positive, loving self-image.

2. Pick a mantra
Last year, my mantra was simply “I am self love.   The more I told myself “I am self love” the more love I began to radiate from within.  Love is eternal and beautiful in nature.  We all have it.   Not just some.   So pick your mantra and start working with it.  Repeat it 3, 10, 50 times a day until it really starts to sink into your psyche.

3. Bathroom Rituals
Pick one that works for you.  For me, I love a nice, long bubble bath.   Nothing says rest and restore like 30 minutes soaking in a tub full of my favorite salts and essential oils.   If you do not have a bathtub, then perhaps you use the shower as a way to cleanse and refresh.  Or find your favorite moisturizer to lather all over your body.  I recommend saying your mantra as you dry off or apply your moisturizer.

4. Get dressed up!
Put something on right now that makes you feel sexy, cute, confident, and essentially you.  Don’t go for the worn out black t-shirt you always wear (that was the old me!) instead try on something new, even if it is just simply adding a mala or a scarf to your ensemble.  Wear something that dresses you up in your confident self.  Allow it to be comfortable and flowing so you feel free the whole day and observe as your body language starts to change.

5. Make yourself a meal
Skip the drive through and head to the grocery store.  Pick up all of your favorite items and spend some time making a meal that sounds delicious to you.  I would even encourage experimenting with your own recipe rather than looking one up online.  Once you have gathered all of your favorite produce, make sure you spend time washing and cleaning the food.  This cleaning process is not only good to keep it healthy and fresh, but you can get your loving hands all over it.  So when your body goes to digest, it knows that it was prepared with love.  It will help shift your relationship towards food how your body processes the energy.

6. Take a Yoga Class
Yoga is a great way to take some time for introspection.  In Yoga, we use the breath as a tool to get back in touch with your body and quiet the chatter of the mind.  Yoga helps to center, balance, and calm the nervous system. If you have a little more energy, then perhaps get a little cardio exercise.  Physical activity can help decrease stress and increase the number of endorphins in the body.  Endorphins help to alleviate the feeling of pain while stimulating the feeling of joy.  This will not only reinvigorate your mind but also give you a sense of empowerment to take on your day with strength and ease.

7. Connect with nature
I have found that even for 5 minutes, that feeling the rays of sunshine over my face really replenish my soul.  Going outside for a hike or taking a walk on the beach can be just as rejuvenating as a 2-hour nap in the middle of the day.   Practice a little bit of gratitude as you walk around the neighborhood and recognize that there is so much beauty in the world.   Place your hand on a tree or roll around in the grass.  Reconnect with your inner child and play…skip, run, jump, explore.   Remember those days of pure joy running around with your friends?  Come back to that feeling and spend some quality time with Mother Nature.

8. Sleep
Last but not least, and perhaps the best. . . Your body needs rest!   A restless body is usually not a happy body (at least not this body!).   If you find yourself constantly sleep deprived it cannot only affect your mood but also your metabolism and energy levels.  I suggest 7-8 hours per night.   It may seem like a lot to the working professional, but your body with thank you for it.  You will feel more alive and empowered to take on the day, and you may skip on that afternoon crash when you feel tempted to take a nap or sneak in another coffee.  Getting the proper amount of sleep is essential, for you and all those around you!   Ladies this is especially important for us as we lack the amount on testosterone that men have to power through the exhaustion.  Get your rest and fill up your tanks for the next day.

Enjoy every moment.  Be patient with the process.  As I mentioned in the beginning, self-love and personal care is not something that happens overnight.  For many of us with tainted backgrounds in judgmental environments, we need to rewire the brain to come from love rather than from fear.  Usually the root of negative conversations comes from this idea that you are “not enough”.  And I am here to reassure you that you are enough.  You have endless, boundless amounts of untapped loved stored right in your body.   Go digging and start to uncover some of that gold lying within!

Ali Owens is a Yoga Alliance certified teacher based in Manhattan Beach, California.he is a passionate artist, culture enthusiast, and fan of outdoor activities. Her classes are lead in an uplifting and challenging Vinyasa flow, linking movement with each breath in a continuous sequence

headshot2-302x454Website: http://www.aliowens.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AliOmYoga

 

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