Do you engage in self-sabotaging behavious? Perhaps in how you treat your body, perhaps by the way you think or things you do? So many people have written about the topic of self-love. We all know how good it is for our sense of wellbeing, our choices of how to act and the preservation and love of our sacred body. But how do we actually find time to practice self-love, especially when we are in the "heat of the moment"?
I came up with this little idea over a "self-love" brainstorm as I was just about to kick-off my 30-day beach bum program with a friend. My hardest challenge is emotional eating - eating at odd times when I'm not feeling awesome. So I came up with an idea - when you're feeling stressed out, upset or generally down, instead of reaching for a physical snack, go grab yourself a 5 minute meditation snack!
*Just a side note here, at one point in my life, I use to engage in a two-pronged attack on my wellbeing... emotional eating then followed by punishing exercise. I've since used this technique for this behaviour too... So this exercise can totally be used for any non-loving actions you might engage in, to STOP that behaviour in it's tracks.
The 5-minute meditation snack for self-love
Now there's plenty of meditations you can find on youtube. But here's one that has been used for centuries and works - It's called mindful breathing. Simple, easy and can be done anywhere without you looking like a complete twat! Think yogic, think belly, think expansive deep breaths.
1) Stop whatever you are doing and remove yourself physically, if possible. Take a break to the bathroom if need be, stand up, close your eyes, shut off your computer, go outside. Just remove yourself!
2)Set a timer and breath. I find it helps to close your eyes, so you can really connect with how your body is feeling. Concentrate on the breath coming in and out. Breath deeply and fully and follow the inhale and the exhale.
Sensing the body to shift attention
I like to bring my attention to different parts of the body and the sensations that are there:
- You might notice the sensation of expansiveness through the lungs and chest
- You might notice tension in your shoulders, so let that go with a breath out
- You might notice where your feet are placed - place them in a position that is comfortable and relaxed
- Do a body scan from bottom of the feet to the top of your head and be aware of any tension that exists. With each breath in, feel space and with each breath out, let go of that tension.
Adding some magic with a mantra
Sometimes I like to say a mantra while I breath. I choose anything that is appropriate for that moment. I like to think before I start "with every breath I take I am <insert positive feeling/attribute>, with every breath out I leave <negative> behind" For example:
- For overwhelm, start with the intention "with every breath in I am more capable, with every breath out I leave overwhelm behind". *Breathe in* "I am capable" *breath out* "Goodbye overwhelm"
- For loss of motivation *breath in* "I am motivated" *breath out* "good bye idleness"
Juicing it up with some gratitude
Sometimes I like to just focus on being grateful. For me, this works so well on almost anything! With every breath I find something to utter to be thankful for. It can be as simple as "I'm thankful I am breathing", to "I am thankful I am able to feel these feelings" to "I am thankful for having my family" - anything goes as long as it feels truthful to you.
I hope this was useful for you! And remember - the more you practice, the easier it becomes and the less you have to think about doing it... it becomes automatic (automatically awesome! Love it!)
Now go forth and conquer!
I'd love to hear if you try this and if it works for you - so please comment below!
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