3 ways to start practicing self-Love

Dealing with stress is an essential skill we often ignore.

Shanghai is such a fast-paced city and one of biggest issues I’ve found as a consequence of its speed is the high level of stress from the people in it. 

 

Whether you are traveling all of the time for your job or managing a growing family, stress comes in all forms. Every time we leave our homes and cross the street, check out email inboxes, and digest meals, our bodies experience stress. 

Dealing with stress is an essential skill we often ignore. One simple thing I do to offset the negative effects of a hectic lifestyle is to practice small acts of self-love. Self-love is a phrase often tossed around in new age talk so I want to clarify how I define this concept.

 

Self-love means taking care of my needs and prioritizing my own well-being and joy.

 

Self-care is not settling less than my highest self deserves.

 

With self-love, we can ultimately take time for ourselves, slow down our busy lives and treat ourselves.

3 simple ways to practice self-love

1. Consume food that nourishes you

Get yourself a nourishing breakfast that can serve as food for your brain and can give you enough energy start the day. Whether that is a glass of warm water with lemon, an avocado smoothie or a homemade baked good treat, listen to what your body needs. 

 

In my experience, it is actually less about what I eat and more about the intention behind it.

 

The process of preparing food and savouring the smells and tastes is absolutely self-love in action. As I make my morning smoothie, I smile at the foods in blending and remind myself that I deserve this and I love myself. I try not to multi-task during breakfast, no matter how tempting it may be to check my phone or plug in a podcast. Jon Kabat-Zinn calls it 'voluntary simplicity’ and starting the morning on this note can shift the course of the entire day.

A key element of the practice is not to push yourself to where you “should” be, but rather to slowly relax into the pose and let it take shape. 

 

*This pose is not suitable for those with back injuries or serious pain in legs. If you’re in your third trimester, Uttanasana is not advised (nor would you likely be able to get there with your belly!)

Remember, yoga is meant to be a balance of strength and ease.

In my personal life and with my health coaching practice, I am constantly reflecting on two big questions:

 

1) how can I reduce the stress in my life?

2) how can I more efficiently manage the inevitable stress that I experience?

3 simple ways to practice self-love

1. Consume food that nourishes you

Get yourself a nourishing breakfast that can serve as food for your brain and can give you enough energy start the day. Whether that is a glass of warm water with lemon, an avocado smoothie or a homemade baked good treat, listen to what your body needs. 

 

In my experience, it is actually less about what I eat and more about the intention behind it.

 

The process of preparing food and savouring the smells and tastes is absolutely self-love in action. As I make my morning smoothie, I smile at the foods in blending and remind myself that I deserve this and I love myself. I try not to multi-task during breakfast, no matter how tempting it may be to check my phone or plug in a podcast. Jon Kabat-Zinn calls it 'voluntary simplicity’ and starting the morning on this note can shift the course of the entire day.

2. Believe in yourself with intentional positive thoughts

Positivity can boost productivity and happiness as proven by countless studies. As humans we have the choice to believe just about anything - whether it is limiting or empowering. For example, I can choose to believe that I am getting stronger in my yoga practice or that I am not able to improve. 

 

Affirmations are a powerful practice for strengthening the positive belief muscles. Try to write down some of your strengths and keep reminding yourself about them! It will keep you feeling good for the rest of the week. I use a whiteboard marker and write an affirmation on my mirror every week which I recite in my head as I brush my teeth every morning and evening. It works like a charm.

A key element of the practice is not to push yourself to where you “should” be, but rather to slowly relax into the pose and let it take shape. 

 

*This pose is not suitable for those with back injuries or serious pain in legs. If you’re in your third trimester, Uttanasana is not advised (nor would you likely be able to get there with your belly!)

Remember, yoga is meant to be a balance of strength and ease.

Dealing with stress is an essential skill we often ignore. One simple thing I do to offset the negative effects of a hectic lifestyle is to practice small acts of self-love. Self-love is a phrase often tossed around in new age talk so I want to clarify how I define this concept.

 

Self-love means taking care of my needs and prioritizing my own well-being and joy.

 

Self-care is not settling less than my highest self deserves.

 

With self-love, we can ultimately take time for ourselves, slow down our busy lives and treat ourselves.

3 simple ways to practice self-love

1. Consume food that nourishes you

Get yourself a nourishing breakfast that can serve as food for your brain and can give you enough energy start the day. Whether that is a glass of warm water with lemon, an avocado smoothie or a homemade baked good treat, listen to what your body needs. 

 

In my experience, it is actually less about what I eat and more about the intention behind it.

 

The process of preparing food and savouring the smells and tastes is absolutely self-love in action. As I make my morning smoothie, I smile at the foods in blending and remind myself that I deserve this and I love myself. I try not to multi-task during breakfast, no matter how tempting it may be to check my phone or plug in a podcast. Jon Kabat-Zinn calls it 'voluntary simplicity’ and starting the morning on this note can shift the course of the entire day.

2. Believe in yourself with intentional positive thoughts

Positivity can boost productivity and happiness as proven by countless studies. As humans we have the choice to believe just about anything - whether it is limiting or empowering. For example, I can choose to believe that I am getting stronger in my yoga practice or that I am not able to improve. 

 

Affirmations are a powerful practice for strengthening the positive belief muscles. Try to write down some of your strengths and keep reminding yourself about them! It will keep you feeling good for the rest of the week. I use a whiteboard marker and write an affirmation on my mirror every week which I recite in my head as I brush my teeth every morning and evening. It works like a charm.

3. Set boundaries and goals

This has been my biggest practice this year! Being a kind and helpful person does not mean saying “yes” to others all of the time. Be clear with your boundaries and when to say “no” to work that will physically or emotionally harm you. 

 

Having ambition is great but when you exceed your limit, it is hard to do well in all the projects you’ve taken. Make sure to only say “yes” to the amount of work that feels right and set goals for yourself so you can have the feeling of “accomplishment” when you achieve your goal. This is definitely easier said than done so take it one decision at a time, one day at a time.

 

Most importantly, love yourself a little more each day! It can be the best medicine for all challenges we face in life.

What are some ways you practice self-love?

Send me a message!