If living through a pandemic has taught us anything it's that we just can't know what tomorrow brings or the future holds. This has always been true, but it seems truer than ever. It's an invaluable reminder that the one and only thing we do know for certain is that we'll be by our own side along this wild ride. You are your only constant. That is why self-love is the key to your peace and empowerment during the pandemic and life itself. Here are three ways you can start to reprogram your thoughts and respect and nourish yourself.
1. Make Patience Your Virtue Times are weird and weird times call for patient minds. Patience is vital not just for the countdown to freedom again, but for your relationship with yourself. Patience is needed for the external world and your personal internal world. Patience says, "it's okay that you're feeling this way right now. I am here and I support you in your process." Patience is a deep, loving breath. Patience is gentle. Breathe and honor your mental, physical and emotional ups, downs, and in-betweens. They are all okay. 2. Practice Daily Meditation Meditation is one of the best and most literal practices for developing an intra-personal relationship with yourself. Sit or lie down with you, and only you for anywhere from three to thirty minutes per day and simply be. Allow yourself to be. Listen to your own breath, your own heartbeat, or choose a mantra that feels loving to you. Reconnect with yourself and soothe your mind all at once. You'll be amazed at how powerfully your time on the meditation cushion will ripple into your waking life.
3. Do Some Self-Massage/Abhyanga We spend a lot of time in self-critical mode - especially when it comes to our physical bodies. If you've packed on the quarantine fifteen (or forty), there's a name for it for a reason. Forgive yourself. One of the ways we can practice coming back to self-love is by expressing it physically to ourselves. Abhyanga, otherwise known as self-massage, is a beautiful ancient Ayurvedic ritual that includes a pure plant-derived oil such as coconut or sesame, your body, and your own hands. Set an intention to connect with your body and send loving thoughts toward each part your hands come into contact with. Start at the feet and move the hands in long, affectionate motions up the body to the heart. The benefits include: improved circulation, lymphatic drainage, relaxation and with intention, a deeper sense of self-appreciation, physical intuition and care. Make time to practice this weekly or even daily to develop a deeper bond with the body that is your temple.
Get even more serious about self-care and self-love by signing up for my e-course: How to Love Yourself. A tool and resource to guide you during these trying times - and for life.