Self-Love…do you practice it and if so how often? Checking out the definition of self-love you will find, the regard for one’s own well-being and happiness. Looking a little further I read about how to obtain self-love in the publication Psychology Today and how to practice self-love from mindbodygreen. There are dozens of articles and rightfully so, as this is a well documented and self deserving topic.
Here’s what I think about it and what I am doing about it. I’m going to be real and honest, this topic has never been a favorite of mine. I have suffered with eating disorders in my youth and disordered eating as an adult. After my kids, I slowly settled into a healthy lifestyle of eating well and exercising daily, however a little voice was still poking at me on a regular basis. “You aren’t thin enough. You are too broad shouldered. How can you weigh that much? That won’t look good on you!” Oh how I hated that bullying voice.
We can be destroyed by our own self hate. Trust me I’ve been there. For example, my menopause was the launch pad to what I called holy hell. My famous Kris Jenner story of her going to bed a size 8 and waking up a size 14! So how does one move out of this darkness? If I had only learned how to self-love I would have reaped the benefits more quickly.
Can you imagine yourself in the mirror saying “I love you. You are the best. You are awesome. You rock!” If you can’t…start. It’s like “Mirror, mirror on the wall whose the fairest of them all?” Ok, I dislike the Cinderella Disney reference, but honestly if I didn’t start the self-loving in the mirror I wouldn’t be in this love fest.
According to some self-love researchers, self-love comes from being honest.
Ok I can play this game. I’m tall. I have big bones. My stomach sticks out from three kids and it’s split in half. The number on the scale will always ruin my day so I don’t look at it. I can’t do all the athletic feats I use to. I wish I could run, but I can’t. My hair is thin and my neck is bugging the heck out of me. Now what?
Next, is taking accountability with current choices and thought patterns that give self-love a foundation.
Stand in the mirror and focus on what you do LOVE about you. Ok, I can walk. My legs don’t hurt. I look amazing at 54! I love what I do. I love who I am. I love ME! I love that I can laugh at myself. I love that I am strong and I love what my personal attendant said about my hair when I was at Buckstaff.
During most of my career as a fitness and health professional I believed that self-love modalities were for pain due to an injury. Additionally, self-love has been at the helm of a narcissism debate. Is it selfish to love yourself? I can honestly say I felt, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it and give to others not yourself.
I’m glad I changed my tune. Thankfully, in my mid to late twenties weekly facials were a priority. Moving to Los Angeles in the late nineties and working with actresses you see their skin up close and personal. Trust me I got their secrets, no sun and plenty of facials. Thanks to my skin angel, Nerida Joy who has been the only one to touch my face for 26 years, the self-love facial has paid off. I wish I had taken, the above and beyond dedication, for my body.
Today, I am catching up with therapeutic body work, fascia massage, physical therapy, Normatec, ice baths, getting Beemed and my recent trip to Hot Springs, Arkansas. I dipped in a turn-of-the-century eclectic bath house called Buckstaff.
My day at Buckstaff is one I wish I could repeat daily. Traditional thermal baths from Hot Springs National Park, loofa scrub, steam cabinet, sitz bath, full body massage and a paraffin hand treatment. I felt like a queen and this is why. Natural hot springs can boost blood circulation, reduce stress, promote sleep and relieve pain naturally.
Being doted on for two hours was a gift. My beautiful attendant stopped me mid sentence when I said I had thin hair, “Honey, there is no such thing you have angel hair, soft as silk”.
Our bodies deserve our love. Take time for your body. Remember we only get one!