It has been a while AGAIN since my last post and I truly missed writing and being in touch with all the fellow bloggers out there, but I am currently going through some major changes in my life and needed the break.
I still hope you all had a wonderful Xmas as well as New Years party and started well into the New Year. As I picked up reading blogs again recently I stumbled upon a wonderful post by Gena Hemshaw from Choosing Raw which talked about body love and that it is never too late for self-care. As obvious as it sounds to take care of our bodies in order to stay sane and healthy, we often don’t realize how little attention we actually give it. In fact, we often do not listen at all to our bodies (especially after a Xmas food and drinks marathon) and let it struggle with the “normalities of life”: stress, eating, dieting, working out, more mental stress, negativity. Many of you probably have a New Year’s resolution that looks something like that: “I will be healthier, eat cleaner, eat less, work out more, look toned………” REALLY? Take a break here. What is it that you want to achieve? Do you want to lose a few pounds or become healthier? Do you want to get toned to look better or to FEEL better?
The reason why I asked you these questions is to maybe rethink your New Years resolutions, turn things around and try to see the whole picture from a different angle. Start the New Year with valuing, accepting and caring your body!
Gena from Choosing Raw shared some modest tips on body appreciation which are a good way to break cycles of negativity and gain a fresh start or “at least start the process of looking after yourself with more tenderness”. So here they are:
1. Stop thinking of your body as an antagonist
Pay attention to cravings, rather than feeling frustration with them. Ask what you’re craving and why, and then find a wholesome way to satisfy the craving. Attention: This can not only be a food craving but also an emotional craving or dissatisfaction. Be mindful, avoid skipping meals, depriving yourself or being overly rigid.
2. If you’ve been getting frustrated with your body a lot, do the mental exercise of asking yourself what you’d advise if your body belonged to someone else.
What if a friend told you she was tired and thinking about taking a rest day, but was scared she’d feel guilty? Would you tell her to hit the gym anyway? So often, we cannot extend to ourselves the kind of logical compassion and care we’d extend to a friend without a second thought. As you start the new year, resolve to treat yourself as compassionately as you treat those around you.
3. Ditch clothes that don’t fit.
Get real. Most peoples’ bodies do not remain the way they were at 18 forever. Don’t try to fit in pants that only fit you every other Friday morning after a stressful week- don’t force it, just buy bigger, more comfortable pants. They might even look sexier on you and make you shine. For some inspiration, read JL’s post January diet? Nope, I bought bigger clothes!
4. Find a kind of movement that serves you.
Whatever you enjoy doing, do it MORE! May it be Yoga (from calm to sweaty), running, dancing, skiing, going to the gym or even just walking. Be sure you are not pressured into it, but do WHAT YOUR HEART DESIRES! Exercise and movement are big components of wellness, but slaving away at an activity you dread is hardly an expression of healthy intention.
5. Do something everyday that allows you to acknowledge your body
What helps me personally with that is meditation. Although I still have to work on sitting still and surely have days where it is MORE than difficult to do so, it helps me calm down and unwind as well as focus on things that REALLY MATTER. Also helpful are massages or any type of bodywork. A hot bath will do. A good body lotion will do. Cuddling under your favourite blanket will do. Discover your body, discover yourself.
How did you start the New Year? Do you have any New Year resolutions? Does a “body love guide” help you get on the right track?