bear and frog

Be kind to all living beings INCLUDING YOURSELF!

Have you ever had an experience in your life when you say something to someone and then think, “Note to self: NEVER ask or say that ever again!”  The best example I can think of is asking a woman when her baby is due when she is NOT pregnant.  I have asked this question and BEEN asked this question.  I have “bird legs” and skinny arms.  All my extra body weight goes straight to my belly!  I am all too familiar with this question being asked!  I have even had people get up from their bus seat to let me sit down!  I, of course, accepted this offer:)  When it happens, you are typically very apologetic.  She is feeling uncomfortable, you are feeling uncomfortable.  The scenario sticks with you.  You don’t want to create that experience of someone feeling sad, angry or uncomfortable because of something you said.

What about being THAT aware of your thoughts about yourself!  We are our own worst judge.   The next time you are consciously aware of thinking a “negative” thought about yourself, “I don’t like my ears, I hate that scar, I’m fat, STOP!  Acknowledge your judgment.  Apologize to yourself, just as you would to someone else.  Say one or more qualities that you love about yourself.  You are just as important as the next person.  We all have a gift to offer this world.  Say you love yourself and breathe.  If it is challenging for you to think of something that you love about yourself, ask a friend or family member to tell you a quality that they love about you.

During big transitions in my life, I have created many practices to help me embody self-love.  While going through my divorce, I literally had positive affirmations taped up ALL over my house and around my bathroom mirror.  I was Reminding myself to love and accept all of me.  Reminding myself that, “this too shall pass.”  It works!

I have discovered in my life, that I am more willing and, it is easier for me to be kind to another being than to myself.  At some point, as I got older I asked myself, “why?!”  Do I not think I am worth being kind to?!  Of course, I am!  I have often been more concerned about making other people feel happier than myself.  I too deserve to be happy!  As a matter of fact, it is every single person’s birthright, INCLUDING mine!  You need to begin to think loving and kind thoughts and do things for yourself that feel good in your body.  If YOU don’t who will?!  The only true relationship that lasts forever in your life is the one you have with yourself!

What does being kind to yourself look like?  Pay attention when your inner critic shows up and think a positive thought about yourself.  Pay attention to what you put in your body and what you do with your time.  Start to listen to what your body is telling you it needs.  Maybe it needs food, rest or exercise, time alone or connecting with others.  It may be different each day and it may take some time to love and accept all of you, but recognition is the first step.  Be committed to taking that step!

An invitation:  Take a look in the mirror, gaze into your beautiful eyes, smile, breathe and say “I love you.”  Relax your body and repeat.  If this comes easy to you, throw your hands up in the air and declare with an open heart, “I LOVE YOU!”  If that is still easy for you, stand buck naked looking at your beautiful body, throw your hands up in the air and shout, “I LOVE YOU!”

Don’t wait for the other person to be kind.  Smile.  Be kind to YOURSELF, to other PEOPLE, to the ANIMALS and the ENVIRONMENT!  Notice how kindness comes back to you in your life.


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