It is almost Valentine’s day and good chances are that today you will be looking for a card for your loved one. Once you find a cute card with a doggy, hearts, or kittens, you will take some time to think of all the wonderful qualities that your partner has and list them on the card. Most certainly, you will say that you love him or her.
We proclaim our love to others quite often but not so much to ourselves. How many times have you said ‘I Love You’ to your own body?
You write love letters and Valentine cards to your friends, family, and everyone that you care about but have you ever written a love letter to yourself? I bet you can remember the last time when you gave a complement to another person but would have a harder time recollecting a compliment to yourself. I hope I am wrong and you love your body tremendously but considering all the body image issues skyrocketing among men and women, I might be right.
Body and Mind – A Love/Hate Relationship
I abuse my body almost everyday. I don’t like to think about it but it is true.
My body doesn’t have a voice, it can’t tell me what to do. It can’t complain to the police or call 911. It has to quietly put up with me, find ways to recover and keep working until it BREAKS DOWN.
Before it falls apart, our body behaves like a loyal dog. You kick it and it runs up to you wagging its tail. Like a helpless puppy that got hurt by an abusive owner, your body sticks up to you anyway. It tries to find ways to adapt to living in pain. It keeps protecting you, supporting you, and serving you no matter what you do. Your body has no way to resist or protect itself from you.
You abuse your body, too. I know it for a fact. It doesn’t matter if you are a wellness expert, a committed yogi or a vegan runner. Even if you think that you live the healthiest lifestyle possible considering the circumstances, you are still self-abusive. How do I know it? Well, it is almost impossible not to engage in regular body abuse if you live in a modern society. What matters is the degree of abuse, the awareness of the fact, and what you do to reverse the trend.
Some regular day to day things can be pretty abusive. See how many you check off:
- Not sleeping enough
- Working out when you are tired
- Not moving your body for days or weeks at a time
- Drinking coffee/taking stimulants when tired instead of taking a break
- Drinking energy drinks to work out ‘harder’
- Not eating enough
- Overexercising to the point of exhaustion because more is better
- Eating while walking or standing
- Not checking in to see how it feels
- Breathing very shallow and fast
- Drinking alcohol to the point of getting a hangover
- Not eating vegetables
- Treating symptoms without resolving the root cause
- Eating non-food items made out of chemicals
- Binging on food or alcohol
- Eating when upset or bored
- Not eating when hungry
- Not going to the bathroom regularly
- Ignoring body’s urges for the sake of being polite to others
Many of us are guilty of at least some of the above. All can be considered a crime against the body.
After abusing the body we expect it to function perfectly, to have a lot of energy, not to get sick, and perform all its physiological functions well. While we are young our bodies can do it but with age, it gets tired.
To stay well and healthy, your body needs love. As in any relationship, you and your body need to learn how to live together and enjoy life without abuse and power struggles. One of the first steps to better body-mind relationship is to proclaim your love to each other anew!
Love Letter to Your Body – 1 simple yet super powerful exercise to build a better relationship with self!
Your Body Deserves a Valentine’s Card just as much as your partner!
First, I was inspired to write a love letter to my body after reading one by the wellness warrior Jess Ainscough. Her letter was so honest, pure, and full of authentic love and care. It was not fake, it was painfully real. It made me want to cry and ask for forgiveness from my body. And I did. And, I think, my body forgave me:). We are trying to work things out and learn to happily live together. It’s a process and it requires work but it is very rewarding!
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Happy Valentine’s day, love birds!