Self love. It is the foundation of a happy life and yet, at times, is so hard to hold on to. So, what is self love? While some consider self love to be conceited, the Yamas and Niyamas of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras teach us that self love is a combination of ahimsa (non-violence) brahmacharya (non-excess), and santosha (contentment).
To be your most authentic self, you need to incorporate self-care into your daily life. Self-care anchors you in kindness and love, even amidst a whirlwind of stress or trauma. Dr. Kristen Lee Costa, a professor at Northeastern University and stress expert defines self-care as “being aware of a wide range of needs and deliberately taking action to support our own well-being.”
Does your ego keep following you to your yoga mat, no matter how many times you try to check it at the door? Yoga instructor Jason Crandell encourages us to think it through and consider this in a different way. “We want to invite our ego to come with us so we can see it, understand it and have a relationship with it. Notice and don’t be surprised when ego arises. Practice seeing and witnessing its existence.” For more information, visit JasonYoga.com.
What if I told you I could show you the value of your ego in your spiritual development? If I said that following your ego will help you to discover your own sacredness, would you believe me?
The ego has become misunderstood in recent years. Harkening back to the Freudian concept, the ego is the part of your mind that balances your desires with what is reasonably attainable. It is the part of your mind that can truly be called “the self.” It is within this self that the deepest and most important of the sacred mysteries wait.
I was recently around a parent who was teaching their child discipline. When the child would become disruptive and disobedient, the parent would say, “Do you want a time out?” If the child continued, the parent would say, “All right, if you keep this up, you will take a time out.” The child continued and the parent said, “Okay, that’s it! Time out!” They then made the child sit in a place that they were not allowed to get out of until the parent gave permission. Of course, the child was upset even though they were clearly testing the boundaries.
What do you love about your body and why? Do you automatically think to yourself, “Uh, nothing?” I don’t know about you, but whenever I try to come up with a list of good things about myself it takes a lot of thought and time. Now, if you were to ask me what I would like to improve about my body, I could give you a list of ten things in no time flat.
Why is this? Why is it so easy for us to be self-deprecating (no matter if we are in the best or worst shape of our lives)? Yet when we are asked to name a positive or two, we really have to stop and think. And I mean really stop and think for a while, maybe even a day or two.
I’ve heard from first-time brides (at 49 and older!), from busy entrepreneurs whose 80-hour-a-week work schedules left little time for romance, and from divorcees and widowers who were convinced that the opportunity for true love had long passed them by. Whether these soulmate success stories come from Russia, Ireland, Spain, South Korea, Nova Scotia, Poland, Iran, Slovenia, Austria, Germany, Norway or the good ’ole U.S. of A., I can always spot the common theme woven throughout them: Those who have successfully manifested their soulmates did so by finding a healthy balance between intending and allowing; between doing and being.
Although this may seem an incredible concept, as far as I am concerned, so are diets. If diets and diet books worked, there would not be a multi-multibillion–dollar diet industry. You can and will experience how you can address your body in a new and effective way. If weight is an issue for you, it is a symptom of how you want to change your life. By changing your weight you will change your life.
Whenyou see the world in yourself, there are no more outward obstacles to happiness. The inner and outer worlds are mirrors of each other. They change according to your level of consciousness. If you are vibrating at the level of fear, your inner world of thoughts and emotions and your outer world of events and relationships will reflect that. Similarly, if your consciousness vibrates at the level of love, then love will be present in both your inner and outer worlds. A flow of happiness and abundance will manifest when you have reached the deepest level of yourself. – Deepak Chopra, The Happiness Prescription (Harmony Books, 2009)