List the things you love about your body!
Now list the things you dislike about your body!
Which list is longer? Which list was easier to compile? I'm pretty sure I know...I hear it all the time in yoga classes. People can easily list what they feel is less than perfect. If you read my previous post, you know I am doing the Oprah/Deepak Chopra 21-day Meditation Challenge; the whole series is about connecting to your physical body. I am thrilled they are doing this! It is so important to understand the energetic implications of loving or hating our bodies! When someone praises/compliments us, we expand, our mood raises, we feel good! Likewise, if someone criticizes us, we get upset, withdraw, contract. The same responses occur when we praise or criticize ourselves/our bodies.
We have all heard that plants thrive with love and attention and wither under criticism and neglect; why would our bodies be any different? When we create a positive, loving relationship with our bodies, they become healthier and we become happier. I spoke of this in a class one evening and there was a woman there who had arthritic hands that could be quite painful. She thought about what I said in class and for a few weeks, instead of being angry at her hands for what they couldn't do, she treated them with gratitude for the things they did do. She reported back to me that her hands had greatly improved; she wasn't feeling anywhere near the pain she had been experiencing. She was thrilled!
The path to a loving relationship with your body begins with a desire to change and then a change in perspective. When I shifted my focus away from what society and people around me thought I should look like and started to feel heartfelt gratitude for what my body can and does do for me EVERY day, everything changed. Think about how your feet, your legs, your hands and your arms are in service to you every day. Think about your internal organs, your 5 senses, your voice that allows you to express yourself, your mind that gives you the ability to process thoughts ~ what incredible gifts these are to you! What about your skeletal body, your muscular body? What would you be without them? Think of the millions of cells that work together in perfect harmony 24/7 to allow you to move through each and every day! If a good friend worked as hard for you as your body does, you would be challenged to find a way to truly thank them. When gratitude for all that your body does becomes the focus, there is a new found perspective that allows a loving relationship to grow and develop. Go ahead, try it! Take a few minutes to thank your body for all it does! Do it every night before you go to bed and then again in the morning. You have nothing to lose and a whole new loving relationship to gain!