One toxic trait I think we’ve all experienced at one point or another…self-love and self-care acceptance can be so difficult in a world that is constantly challenging our worth.
How can you walk today with a little more gentleness for YOU?
"Enlightenment is when a wave realizes it's an ocean." -Thich Nhat Hanh
Read that back to yourself a few times, then pause.
We use enlighten as a verb meaning to clear up, to remove confusion. Light is also a powerful metaphor for spiritual insight. If you have a great revelation about the divinity of the world, you could say you have been enlightened.
How does this idea fit into your life today? Where could you challenge yourself?
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This is one you have to read more than once… It has so much meaning and depth, but the bottom line is that we all are walking a journey through life. It is difficult. It is challenging. But it also is full of lessons waiting to be learned. You can choose to ignore those lessons and your life is going to be more difficult for a while. Or you can choose to heal and in that process of healing, growing, learning other people see that journey you’re walking and take something from it when you’re not even realizing it. I have always said that I practice what I preach. I do my best to be true to that statement in my work, my retreats, my talks, everything I do. It’s not about perfection… It’s not about an end result. It’s always about the journey!
I have been reflecting on this topic for quite some time. There are so many ways that I could write about what it means to embrace self-care. I could easily judge a half a dozen different ‘fads’ that are going around and give my un solicited opinion. Or, I could do the single most healthy thing and stay in my own journey as it be. I can only ever speak on the path which I have walked, for that is the one that I have learned from the most.
Each person will define the act of self-care in different ways that mirror their journey. And that is ok. I have found it is quite important not to judge where another person is at on their journey, as it is not ours to own. This didn’t come easy or right away, but after trial and error over decades of living.
In fact, I have sincere gratitude for the learning I have done from watching other journeys; I have been able to incorporate ideas, risks and directions into my own steps. This, ultimately, has led to a better existence. Though, I accept that not all the things I will try to incorporate will ultimately benefit me or my specific path, but there is learning in the attempt that allows for wisdom to follow, as I take the next step.
Our only job on our personal journey is to live it as we see fit knowing our inner core. It is our mission to risk, to grow and to live as we learn and journey down our own path towards living a full and rich life that is intended for us. We may reach paths that others do at one point or another, but we will dance through what is meant for our personality and existence.
As a single mom, this has solely meant putting ‘me’ back into the equation. While that may sound simple, I assure you it is not. It is human nature to put anyone in our lives before ourselves. Then, we are surprised when we take a moment to breathe and ask, ‘what about me?’ Sometimes, by that point, it is almost too late to find our way as the bitterness can take hold. This is a personal challenge.
So, I am calling out for you to ‘put yourself back into the equation!’ What does this look like? How will you define self-care? It could be as easy as taking yourself out for a cup of coffee.
I know that I feel better when I am moving my body. I am not a hardcore health nut, but I like my morning power walks as the sun rises to bring me some balance in mind, body and spirit.
How often do you stop and listen to your body? Are you giving it foods that provide energy, nourishment and overall health? Everything in moderation has always been my motto. When we lean to one extreme or the other, it isn’t going to provide us with overall balance and wellness. While difficult, we must take the challenge to step back, and be aware.
Are you following your passions? And, no, it doesn’t mean to go leave your responsibilities and travel the world. But, can you take this to a smaller level and find something that would equally sustain your soul? I like to call them ‘monastery days.’ I let my family know that I am unavailable for a twenty-four-hour period and I go commune with myself. It could mean writing, nature hikes, café sitting, or reading. It doesn’t have to be extreme to rejuvenate my tired body.
And, I know myself well having lived this long on earth, that I find it is important to filter in the occasional trip that feeds my old travel soul. This enough allows me to no longer just feel like ‘the mom who everyone needs something from,’ and in its essence brings me back to my roots where it all began.
When I take these moments and days to consider my own well-being, I am not only doing what’s best for my health, spirit and soul; but I am being my best self for those around me in my life.
So, just for today, I challenge you to put yourself back into the equation. When you discover what that is for you, let us know! Inspire others for the journey! Be well.
Just a reminder that the story begins and ends with you first.
Your voice is the loudest on your journey.
There’s an idea behind everything, a preconceived story but the bottom line really begins and ends with you.
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Andrea creates, builds, and offers her teachings and hands on life tools based on her journey healing her body image after a 14yr battle and life of trauma. Her vision always is to help others live a full life with the journey they are given.