Since the day I decided to fall in love with myself and stop trying to live a life that wasn't mine, I have been one of the happiest people i know - not happy all the time, but happy most of the time, or not very unhappy for very long. But several weeks ago i found myself on the tail end of a several week "I am not feeling so happy" spin. I'd wake up unhappy, be cranky, feel stressed most of the day, eat way too many brownies, work ALOT, stay up too late, pass out and start the whole thing over again.
Finally one day when my assistant Mary walked in for a fresh day of work and her first tentative words were, "How are you feeling today Christine???" I knew something was amiss and I had to fix it. This wonderful being who helps and supports me was having to stick a dipstick into my temperament just to gauge how close she should get - now that wasn't any way to live! And if she was feeling that way, how was my partner, friends feeling? Or even more importantly, how was I feeling??? And had I even stopped to take that into consideration before plunging myself into overwhelm and overwork?
I decided to hold an honesty hearing with myself, a deep conversation that included 5 super powerful questions that led me to the startling truth that my SOUL was starving for JOY - all the success, $$, drive and hard work were not feeding my soul, because as it turns out my heart derives joy from play, rest AND doing great work - and the first two were sorely missing!
And that is when I realized, I hadn't asked myself in a very long time 'What makes you happy?" I hadn't considered my joy factor when making decisions. And I wasn't quite sure I could name 10 things that even made me happy, really happy Can you? And are you living them - making sure YOUR soul gets what it needs?
Just like your lungs need air to live, your SOUL needs MORE JOY ... The question is, are you willing to do WHATEVER it takes to create it for yourself. If you don't, who will?
I taped in the video in this blog for you - a Mediation on Location taped on the eve of Lunar Beltane, a day that is about expanding into JOY! This video meditation and the self love adventure that follows will take you on the same adventure I took that led me back to joy - as I remembered what really made me happy and promised myself to get it!
ME ART: CREATE YOUR JOY PORTRAIT
Supplies: Piece of paper and color-infused
writing utensils - Get ready to claim your bliss!
Step 1: Get the Joy Started. In the middle of the
paper write the word JOY. Underneath the word JOY write, "What brings me joy?"
Step 2: Tap into Your Joy. To get your joy motor
moving (it may have been sitting quite awhile) close your eyes, put your hand
on your heart and take a few deep breaths with yourself. As you take each
breath feel yourself going back in time to different points in your life when
you can remember experiencing great joy, bliss, and happiness. Almost as if a
movie is playing in your head, see yourself in these moments, feel yourself in
these moments and remember what joy felt like for you. If you need help
accessing your joy center, go to www.selflovemeditations.com
and get the Self Pleasure meditation.
Step 3: Fill Up with Joy.Taking what you've seen about your joy
moments, and what your soul already knows about following your bliss, your
mission is to fill your entire page - your personal Joy Portrait --with
everything that brings you Joy - words, phrases, and symbols. Make this page
Joy-FULL. Use the following joy starters to find your bliss...
·I am happiest when...
·I feel most alive when...
·I feel most free when...
·I can't help but smile
and laugh when I ...
·When I was a little girl
I loved to....
·My soul gets nourished
·I feel most cared for
·I just love...
·I find great joy in...
Step 4:Ask Your Soul What it Needs... and make sure it receives it. Once the page is full, completely full,
pause for a ME MOMENT.
do I see?
is my life in alignment with my joy? How is it not?
one re-direct I can make now to attune my life to joy and get my soul what it
needs to thrive?
As a completion ritual, write the words "I
Attune to Joy" on your ME ART and make a self-love promise to attune your life
and timing to what brings you joy.
And i'd love to hear 5 JOY-FULL things you found from this self-love adventure - post them here!
And, For more fabulous self-love adventures, go to www.MadlyinLovewithME.com and get the free Self-Love Kit - full of all kinds of daring acts of love and inspiration guaranteed to bring more joy and love into your life!
An excerpt from the upcoming book, Madly in Love with ME by Christine Arylo
"So here I was, The queen of self-love SO not loving herself. Asking myself questions that led me down the road of self-hate, not self-love. (the irony didn't escape me!)
And so I did the only thing I know how to do When I come to that place of self-doubt and confusion I knelt in front of the self-love altar. Plugged into my 24/7 downline to divine love and asked it
"How can I find my way back to love?"
I was led right back to the book I was writing. To ask myself, " What branch of my self-love tree is starving for nourishment?" No surprise - as an recovering over-achiever - My branch of Self-Compassion was as brittle as could be.
And so you know what I did? I followed my own advice - Or more aptly, the words of wisdom that spirit had given me for the book. I went deeper into myself... And led myself through a series of transformative questions I call a ME MOMENT (like having a honest talk with your b.f.f.) Which I have now cut and paste into this blog for you... New material that I haven't yet shared with anyone, until now, with you. And I share them now with you because this is the transformation that occurred for me when I sat and asked myself questions that were actually helpful, not hurtful.
As I knelt and got quiet with myself, and took myself through these questions, I started to see how harshly and unfairly I was judging myself. And then I began to apply compassion. And then the comparison and unrealistic expectations started to loosen. And I started remembering who I am.
Finally, I got the message loud and clear that I needed to hear, and perhaps you do too - the core message of this love letter --
You are doing the best that you can, and that is enough. You are enough.
Does your heart need to hear this message too? To feel love instead of comparison and judgment towards yourself To know love and happiness instead of stress and self-hate
Then give yourself the gift of love today (or in the next 48 hours) Answer the 3 questions, take the daring act of love I included, and rub some compassion onto yourself.
Lead yourself back to the land of love, where you can remember that... YOU ARE DOING THE BEST YOU CAN.
AND YOU ARE ENOUGH.
Tell Your The Truth About Just How Hard You're Being On You...
The way to free yourself from comparison and judgment is to first tell the truth to yourself - the truth will set you free. Then apply compassion to the wounds and love yourself back to the truth - YOU ARE ENOUGH.
Use the three truth
starters below, get a piece of paper, and as if you were sitting down with your
most trusted best friend (even if that is your dog or cat), someone you can
trust to give you unconditional love without judgment, and write the truth.
1.I am unhappy with
myself about...Write down all the areas
of your life in which you are upset that things are not going the way you want,
including all the ways in which you aren't acting or doing what you really
want.List at least 3 no more than
Example: I am unhappy or upset with myself about....
love life, and lack of a romantic, loving relationship
my body is super out of shape right now
having enough money and spending money that I don't have
2.I judge that I
should...Fill in the blank after
this phrase for each of the "unhappy with me" areas you identified.
example: I judge that I should....
able to find a man to like me enough to want to be with me
thinner and be able to control what I eat better
more financially secure and stable
I am really thinking is...Now here's the juice,
the juicy energetically charged judgments. Your mission is to let them rip,
full force so you can release them out of your mind and body and replace them
with some good love. For each response to question #2, write in the most harsh,
real words a statement that reflects what you are really saying to yourself
when you make this judgment. Don't hold back, really let yourself give it to
you - the more you can tap into the mean, critical, 'what the hell is wrong
with you' energy, the more you will succeed in getting to the compassionate
energy in the next part of our adventure. Let yourself free flow write until
every judgment comes out.
are not pretty enough. You are too old. No one wants you. You are damaged
are fat, ugly and an out of control eating machine. You are a sugar addict
who can't deal with her feelings so you stuff yourself full of food.
are not disciplined enough. You are not smart enough. You are not worth
Pause here and look at this list of judgments
that you have just written about yourself. Let the energy from these statements
impact you. What does your body and heart feel like when you look at and feel
these words that you've been directed at you? Not good.
the top of the paper, write the words, I CHOOSE SELF-HATE. Whenever you choose
to think these thoughts to yourself - whether you are conscious of them or not
- you are hating on yourself. This is nothing to be ashamed about, that's
double self-hate, because the truth is that we all do this. Now is the time
to choose love by first choosing to admit the ways in which you haven't been
compassionate with yourself .
Now... Choose Self-Compassion Instead!
like you would instinctively give compassion for a child learning to walk, a
young girl trying to find herself, or a friend who was completely overwhelmed,
you need you to be there to put a hand on your shoulder to say to yourself,
"You are doing the best that you can." Not "You'll do better next time," as if
what you've just done isn't good enough. As if you have to strive for a next
time in order to be okay. But "You are doing the best you can right now,
period." And if you are not doing this for yourself now, then you are not
loving yourself enough.
you make the choice to be there for yourself always, ready to deliver
compassion, and act as a best friend or fabulous mother would. From this day
forwards, every time you judge yourself, hold yourself to unrealistic
expectations or perfections, fail, fall short, or fall behind, or don't feel
well, are tired, or are just having a bad day - you promise to be there, ready
and able to deliver compassion. And when you fail to be compassionate, you are
compassionate about your inability to be compassionate - lol!
do you know if you are giving compassion vs criticism? They are both energies
that you can feel in your body. Self-compassion feels kind, understanding and a
gentle. It feels like a warm and loving energy is being offered instead of
harsh and hard being blasted. Compassion feels rooted in love. It makes your
mind feel at peace, because it believes that regardless of what you achieve or
don't, what you do or don't, if you fail or succeed, act poorly or
magnificently, you are enough, and you deserve love. When compassion is
present, you feel as if you're being embraced by the sweetest, most
unconditionally loving mother in the world - and you are, because you are
TAKE THIS Daring Act of Love: Smother and Mother
Yourself with Compassion
Close your eyes, take a
breath and think of something that you are being really hard on yourself about
right now. Something that you are frustrated by, that you've been judging
yourself for. Something that no matter what you try just isn't working the way
you want, or something you really want but haven't received yet. Allow yourself
to fully feel the frustration, and beneath that the judgment, and beneath that
the emotion of sadness/despair/exhaustion. Then, from a place of compassion,
witness your struggle and also of your inherent perfection, and place your hand
on your shoulder. And just as a mother would, with love say these words at
least three times out loud,
"You are doing the best that you can."
"You are doing the best that you can."
"You are doing the best that you can."
Say them until you can feel the compassion sink
into your heart and bring you back into a state of love for yourself.
Welcome back to love!
If any part of this helped you or if you have an aha or insight you'd like to share - post it here on the blog so we can see the LOVE TRANSFORMATION you generated for yourself. That is the power of love directed at yourself.
If you'd like a song to help you lock this all in, go to www.MadlyinlovewithME.com and download the free Self-Love Kit where you will find the official 2012 self-love song, I am Enough by Karen Drucker.
p.s. And while you are here - claim your heart and souls desire for the world to see. Tell Fear to fear-off! Use your power of self-love. And put you and your desires out here for us all to receive. I'll read each one!
I have always been a big believer that how you feel on the inside is how you feel on the outside. And when it when it comes to my spirit and soul - I get an A+. 9 years of personal exploration, a daily practice and a lifetime commitment to being connected to and serving a source much bigger than I. The core of my being, my spirit and soul feel pretty good.
However, when I go from the spirit/soul level to the inside of my physical and very human body, my grade slips because I do really love red wine and cheese. But I still give myself a solid B... and getting better every day as my body becomes my temple over these next 40 days.
But now let's go two layers out -past the epidermal layer to the layer that sits on top of it... my underwear, and Houston we currently have a problem!
I have always believed that feeling good from the inside out included how the clothes under my clothes felt. Old and comfy grandma-like underwear... feel old, comfy and tired. Mismatched or uncomfortable bras and panties... not operating or looking my best on the outside. And we won't even mention the ones who've become faded, holey, or a relic from history.
Think about it... when you put on your best underwear or your super fun panties don't you feel fabulous?
And when you put those, let's just call them 'other' underwear, do you feel any kind of good at all?
Yesterday, I found myself looking through my underwear drawer noticing that my supply had dwindled to two pairs of 'feel good and sexy,' three pairs of 'fun and free' and many pairs of 'other.' Which I might not have noticed, had I not been getting dressed to go to an appointment with my personal stylist at Nordstrom's. I thought that I had chose a cross between feel good and fun undergarment, up until I found myself in the Nordstrom's dressing room removing my jeans and shirt to slip on a designer dress, and to my complete horror... I discover I have a hole in my panties! Ahh!!!
Not big, not even that noticeable, but a hole in my panties. The panties on my temple! And my temple says to me, in the most loving voice (quietly so no one else could hear thank goodness), "Really Christine, this is an unacceptable adornment for a temple... and for you. Where is the self-love? I am calling for an Underwear Revolution!
The Underwear Revolution...
on search for fun, super-powered panties.
After successfully finding and buying the cutest black and white spring dress, I beelined myself to the lingerie department. What I quickly realized is that I had just walked into a huge jungle of underwear! Trees and tress of panties, bushes of bras, and the occasional tiger striped slip lurking in the distance. I was overwhelmed!
Nylon. Cotton. Rayon blend. G-string. Boy short. Full panty. Lace. Bows. Seamless. White. Bright Pink. Multi-colored. And I won't even get into the bushels of bras! All I wanted was some fun, super-powered panties and now I found myself feeling like I used to feel when I would go to buy wine... staring at the rows and rows of bottles, feeling rather uneducated, not wanting to make a mistake, and ultimately just closing my eyes, trusting my intuition and hoping for the best!
Something in my intuition said not to approach buying my fun super-powered panties this way... that it would pay to take some time to make choices that would make MY temple happy, which may or may not be the same for another woman.
I didn't buy a single pair of panties that day... but I did come up with some rules about what my temple wants from the fabric that sits between her skin and the clothing the world sees. I am going to sit with these proclamations... do a little more research... and then when I am ready, wave the flag to start the Underwear Revolution.
Proclamations for the Underwear Revolution
My temple wants to breathe - she doesn't want to be suffocated.
My temple wants to feel super-powerful - not like she is wearing a diaper.
My temple wants to be fun and free - not dowdy and constricted
My temple doesn't like things crawling into crevices they don't belong - she likes things in their right place, that feel good.
My temple wants to have choices about how she wants to feel on any given day - sassy, super powered, fun, sensitive, sexy, sporty, free.
My temple wants to be adorned with beauty, always, and appreciates the care and self-love I put into every piece of fabric I put on her, as much as she appreciates every morsel of food I put in her.
I am SO enjoying the conversation I am having with my temple about our Underwear Revolution. And it feels so much better than the way I would have approached this before: Picked a few underwear from the rack, not paid attention to the $$, hoped for the best when I got home, and probably been half happy and half disappointed... ultimately creating guilt for spending too much money, stress from not knowing the right decision to make, and judgment about how I should know better to repeat this not self-loving pattern.
It's only Day 4 of the My Body is My Temple Self-Love practice, and all ready I have more self love! Who would have thought you could get that from a pair of underwear!!
Okay, maybe I AM addicted to 40-day self love practices, but hey, there are way worse things to be addicted to! This addiction actually brings me more LOVE vs. less, so I say, let's keep the 40-day self-love practices going all year long.
I am just coming off of a 40-day self-love practice of Receiving, and the one that preceded that was the 40-day Taking Care of ME practice that many of you have been doing the last 40 days. We started on Feb 13th and finished yesterday, March 25th by everyday waking up and asking ourselves, 'What do I need to do to take care of ME today?"
So what is next? When I asked this question I got inspired by two things... 1. Last year, one of five 2009 themes was "My body is my moving temple." I spent a whole year trying to bring that into reality and ended the year with a B-. I want more! And 2. At the Madly in Love with ME Celebration on February 13th, I asked two transformational artists to perform something that embodied the energy of My Body Is My Temple, so that women could literally FEEL what that would be like. My friend Kalila danced an amazing temple dance, and Lone Morch created this amazing movie, My Body As Temple which you should so check out on our you tube channel.
This all leads me and you! to
the "My Body is My Temple" 40-day Self Love Practice
which is the perfect practice to do now! We just celebrated Spring Equinox last weekend which is all about renewing and replenishing. Spring is a time to start shedding all that extra energy we were holding on to to keep us warm and cozy during the Winter months. In the Ayurvedic tradition it's one of the main times to do a full body cleanse. And lets face it, Spring is the time right before bathing suit season, so many of us may have our bodies on our minds.
My relationship with my body has never been my strongest relationship. For me it's not that I hate her, it's that I forget about her. Like I can go months without looking at my toes, feeling my calf or noticing that I have this appendage called an arm. I take my body for granted, as if she is always going to be there to be the workhorse I have always expected her to be. As an achiever I have driven her past the brink of exhaustion on many occasions to 'get the job done' and the truth is that I have treated her more like a piece of machinery at my beck and call than as the temple that she deserves to be treated as.
The other truth is that without her, I would be nothing. I don't exist on this planet without her. My spirit needs this form to be on this earth. None of the passions, missions, dreams I have can be accomplished without her. And although I like to think that I am in charge of her, the truth is that very quickly, if I don't adore her the way a temple deserves to be adored, she will be in charge of me, and I won't be able to do a darn thing about it.
Just think about any time you didn't feel good physically -- from a canker sore to a cold to a much more serious condition - you were at the mercy of your body, and the only way to change the situation was to treat her well.
Well, what if we treated her well before she revolted and got sick?
What if we treated her well, despite our judgments on what she 'should' be?
What would it be like if we treated our bodies like temples, and everyday that was the lens through which we made choices?
I am not sure what the answer is to that last question, but I want to know, and that is why today, I say YES! to this new self-love challenge...
The 40-day "My body is My temple" Self-Love Practice will you join me??
Every morning, before you get out of bed, close your eyes and talk to your body. Yes, have a conversation with her. Ask her "Body, oh temple of mine, what do you need today?" Okay, I know it may sound a bit hokey, but trust me, this kind of stuff works. Fake it til you make it. In other words, be willing to try it, feel uncomfortable and have a breakthrough. Got nothing to lose.
Live with "My Body is My Temple" as a mantra and a lens to make decisions from. During each day and throughout the 40-day time period, think about the choices you make from the standpoint of, "Is this treating my body as a temple?" Notice I didn't say 'jail cell' where you get all controlling and start putting crazy diet rules on yourself. I said temple. Think about food, movement, sleep, affection, clothing, bathing, anything that affects you physically. Make ALL choices based on what does support your body as a temple.
Adore and Adorn Her. Temples are beautiful places that are cherished and beautified. This means nothing other than loving your body for 40-days. No harsh words or judgments, just love. You start to judge? Stop and love instead. This also means bringing out her beauty. No sloppy sweats with stains or a shirt with a hole in the armpit. Think Aphrodite, what would she put on her temple? You don't need a new wardrobe, just put on your body what a temple deserves, clean, pretty and loved items.
Try New. Whether its your food, your clothing, your body movement and exercise, whatever... introduce new practices into your daily life. Eat raw for a day. Wear a pink scarf to work, with rhinestones! Do smoothies for breakfast. Have fun by trying new stuff.
Whatever you do, this self-love practice, MUST be about self-love. This means no rule setting, deprivation, starvation, crazy diets or anything that makes you get stressed out, feel bad or be hungry or in pain. The challenge is to treat your body like a temple, while loving her and you every step of the way.
SO excited to have you on this journey! And if you decide to join us, please let us know you are on board, by posting a message on our Facebook site.
The year I left my corporate job in 2007, I named "The
year of receiving"... I always pick a mantra for the year based on the
quality that I really want to bring into my life and my self. While I had
always been great at making it happen, a skill very valued in the man-powered
corporate world, I knew that to thrive as a an entrepreneur and a visionary
leader I had to learn how to let things happen, I needed to activate my
feminine super power of Receiving.
Three years later, even after a full
year of learning it, I still find the Feminine Super Power of Receiving one of
the hardest to explain, which seems weird to me on one hand because it should
be as simple as saying, it's just like accepting a present from someone. They
give you a gift, you say thank you. But that doesn't seem to quite cut it. It's
like my achiever brain doesn't register something when I think about receiving
in the biggest context of that is how I live my life. "What do you mean
receive? Do I just sit here on my throne like Queen of Sheba letting my
subjects bring me gifts?" Not exactly. And then you couple that with my
social conditioning that it is better to give than to receive and then all
those frayed guilt synapses I've spent years rewiring start to sparkle just a bit.
So in the absence of being able to
appropriately explain the Feminine Super Power of Receiving to you, I did what any good
achiever does, I decided to do something about it. But unlike my former
achievement junkie self, I waited until I was 'invited' to do something about it.
After finishing my 40 day taking
care of ME practice on February 13th, that little but mighty voice inside my
head, who I have come to know and love as my intuition said to me... let's try
Receiving again. At first my ego was a little bruised, "What do you mean?
I spent an entire year learning how to receive? Do you mean I have more to
learn?" An undeniable YES! was her answer, and now I sit here roughly 20
days since I began, and here is what I have learned...
You'll spend less energy and you'll receive more if you
wait for an "invitation" vs. pushing to make it happen.
Several months ago one of my dear
friends Catherine told me that she had proclaimed a new life rule (she does
this on occasion)... and this time her new life lens was 'I wait to do anything
until I am invited.' And I thought to myself, "Well that is nice, good for
you! And that is a non-apply to me." It was like one of those moments when
you kind of get what someone is saying and on the other hand kind of don't but
in either case, know you don't really want to know more. Of course what I
realize now is that what she shared with me was just sheer brilliance, I was
just not ready to see it
Fast forward to two weekends ago,
early into my 40-day Receiving when I attended the Sister Giant conference in
Los Angeles put on by Marianne Williamson... an event mind you that I was
'invited' to come to another friend. I guess I should have seen the writing on
This other friend is a master at the
although I didn't know it at the time because we've only know each other a few
months. When I say she is a master at the invitation what I mean is that she
let's things come to her. Opportunities arise, she notices them, she says, Yes
or No, and then she moves into them. She's lived her whole life this way she
tells me. And this time my achiever brain goes, "Huh, I think there is
something to this invitation thing!" Both she and Catherine expend
tremendously less energy than I do. No toil to 'make it happen' or 'get it all
done' or 'be in the right place at the right time' or 'have the right plan'...
and yet they are both successful, they are both happy and the truth is that
they are more free to enjoy their lives than I am.
It's not that they aimlessly float
around their lives waiting for someone to invite them to a party or tell them
what they want to do. They have a knowing and a focus on what they want. They
are women of action. And they accomplish great things - from raising daughters,
to writing best sellers, to choregraphing beautiful dances and changing
people's consciousness - no small feats! But they do it with a grace and ease
that until now I know I have lacked, and that I believe that I have officially
not believed worked as well as my tactic of push, push, make it happen.
living by invitation only
I LOVE IT!!!!!
far less work and you get to receive many more of the benefits when you wait.
takes a BIG dose of your intuition to listen to the timing of when to move,
when to stay.
you trust, when you listen to your intuition, and when your energy field is
clear, you will just end up at the right place at the right time. The
invitation will show up, and you will say YES or NO. If it feels good and
right, you always say YES, even if you don't know why... because that is where the magic and the miracles happen.
I lived by invitation for the entire weekend at Sister Giant and the magic that happened for me was profound - I had experiences and met women that I never would have if I had been up to my old achiever ways... and it all unfolded for me.
I am currently still living by invitation which has continued to bring more magic... and questions... but I will save those for another blog. For now, consider yourself the 40-day receiving practice and living by invitation only.
With the 12 days of Christmas over... and 360 days ahead of us in 2010 How About Joining ME for a 40-Day Self-love Practice...
40 days of falling more madly in love with ourselves!
Why a Self Love Practice? Over the holiday break, I did a lot of thinking about self love. I know, what? Why would I be thinking about that? Well for many reasons, I teach it, I write it and so I decided to take a pause to examine why I was having such a hard time doing it. While I have reached many self- love milestones... I know who I am, I live a life that is absolutely congruent with that person, I do what I love almost everyday, my relationship with my partner is a true partnership full of unconditional love, and actually every relationship I have is full of love, not a toxic one in sight! But, the milestone of taking care of myself... of being nice, supportive and loving to myself... of feeling like I was truly enough just because I was ME, regardless of what I achieved, well, that milestone has continued to elude me. I've made progress over the years, yes, but the fact is that in 2009 my achievement junkie was still running a big part of my life. And let's face it, any motivation, thought, feeling or emotion that comes from that part of me, or of you, is not loving!
So as I looked to 2010 I had an aha that went something like this... "Most of us get that we 'should' take care of ourselves... that we ought to be nice to ourselves and see what we've accomplished not what we haven't... that it would be a good idea to stop driving ourselves like energizer bunnies gone mad... and that we do need to fill ourselves up before we can give to anyone else. We know these things in our heads, yet when it comes to making the choices that lead to self-love vs. exhaustion, overwhelm and feeling less than perfect, we usually fail. It's like we are trained to take the guilty, sacrificial, give-it-all-to-everyone else path and no matter what we do we can't stop the self-love dumpster patterns and habits."
And that's when it struck me! The 'how to' really, truly accept and love who I am right now and to take really frickin good care of her! I've learned from every teacher I have studied with that having a daily practice can change your life. I've had one for 8 years, and so I know they are telling the truth. So I thought to myself, why not start a self-love practice, do it every day and change my life some more! And then i thought, why not invite all of you to do it with me! After all, there is power in numbers and think about the power of thousands of us doing a self-love practice for the next 40-days!
Why 40-days? When I told my friend Debra about the 40 day self-love practice, she asked me, "Why 40 days?" I love Debra, she always asks me great questions! Here are the answers:
Many yogic traditions believe that if you can do something for 40 days you can change your life, shift major pattern and create new ones. Yogis are smart.
Many metaphysical traditions say the number 40 means "enough". 40 days in the desert kind of thing. These people, also smart.
People who study the brain say that if you can do something for 40 days you can create new habits. Ok, they are brain scientists, they have to be smart!
All good reasons, tried and true, and then add one more, the big kahuna in my mind...
WE ARE 40 DAYS AWAY FROM THE INTERNATIONAL DAY OF SELF-LOVE! FEBRUARY 13TH, 2010 is the official day of self-love, so what better day to celebrate our 40-day victory than with a big self-love celebration. I'm throwing a big one in San Francisco, there's another one in Chicago and Orlando, and really anyone can throw one (i've put all the details in the Madly in Love with ME Kit which you can download for free).
What do you have to do to get started? Here are your first two steps:
Say YES! to making self-love a practice for the next 40 days. Go ahead, say it out loud, "Self love is my practice for the next 40 days!"
Action #1: Starting tomorrow morning, as soon as you wake up or at least within the first hour, ask yourself "What do I need to do today to take care of ME?" Out loud. Listen. Really listen. Whatever the answer is, say that out loud. And make it happen, It's not optional it's a priority, because you are a priority.
Today, when I asked the question, the answer I got was "Spend time with candles lit dreaming up your next year." So I felt into the day, and it felt like night would be good. And so I took the time this evening to do that, before I finished this blog to you! Result? I've been taken care of!
Over the next 40 days, I will be blogging every day about my adventure and giving you tips and tools for your own 40-day self love adventure. I'll be facebooking and tweeting and sharing inspiration, including the Video Dare contest and Self-Love Manifesta contest we are running on http://madlyinlovewithme.com. Check it out! We are radiating self love all over the place for the next 40 days .... make sure to come on in and soak some up!
learn more about you by traveling back through your life and remembering what FUN was for you at different times and ages.
One thing that I have learned about fun is that it changes as we age and it also stays the same. Both are true. There are things that were fun for you when you were 7 that would still be fun if you gave yourself the permission to just let go and be your little girl again. And there are things that you thought were fun as a teenager and in your early twenties that would so not be fun today. And that information - about what fun used to be and about how your definition of fun has changed as you have are great ways to get to know the woman you are today even better.
So many of us 'adults' have come to think of play as something we have to buy or save for when in fact if we just take a look back through time, we can find all kinds of ways to have fun that don't require a credit card or a down payment. And so many of us think back to the times when we were more 'free' and think they were full of such fun, but what we realize when we go back in time is that those things weren't really as fun as we thought. And that realization brings even more freedom! So today I invite you to take a self-love adventure to learn more about your personal definition of fun by taking a trip back in time ... it's called Fun-Time Travel and this is how you do it:
Step One: Create some space in your life to take a couple of hours for this journey. Pack the materials you'll need: a journal or some paper, writing or drawing utensils, and your memory. If it helps, bring some pictures of you from different ages. Step Two: Take your materials to a place where you can just be with you. It can be a public place like a coffee shop, out in nature or a personal space in your home. Just make it somewhere you can really sink into this adventure.
Step Three: Once you are all settled in, first on the top of one page write, "When I was 5 and 7, fun was..." Turn to the next page and write "When I was 13 and 15 fun was... " Turn to the next page and write "When I was 17 and 19 fun was", then "21 fun was..." and so on using whatever ages make sense for you, up to and including the age you are today.
Step Four: Starting with your youngest age, answer the question, "When I was 5 and 7, fun was...." Imagine yourself at that age. See yourself as you were then. Remember what it was that you did that made you laugh, smile or just have a good time. Write in really great detail what fun was for you. Describe what you did. Write down how you felt. Notice what you think about that today. Repeat the same for each year that you wrote down.
Step Five: Go back and look at all your wrote. What do you notice? Use these questions as a way to find the nuggets of wisdom that you can apply to your life today: • What surprises you? • What makes you happy? What makes you sad? • How has your idea of fun changed over the years? • What are common themes throughout the years? • What can you take from the past to bring more fun into your life today? • What do you need to let go over to bring more fun into your life today?
Step Six: Pick three actions based on what you learned from your time travel that you can take immediately to start bringing more fun into your life. Write down what you will do and by when. And then tell someone what you've decided to do. Ask them to be your Play Partner and help you stay accountable to having fun and doing your three fun actions!