5 ways to give the body love:
- Choose to workout in a way that brings you joy and a feeling of being happy and healthy inside your body (instead of trying to improve the look of the body)
- Choose food that brings you energy and health and that tastes good.
- Find ways to satisfy your senses, through massages, smelling roses and perfumes, wear clothes with fabrics that feels good. Anything that brings you into the present moment and you can appreciate your senses here and now. Be in nature fully present.
- Learn to let go of negative thoughts about your body and treat it with love and care throughout the day. Have a disciplined practice of letting go of negative thinking. (It really makes all the difference!)
- Do exercises like yoga and tai chi to balance your breath, nervous system and endocrine system. In this way it is easier to stay present and not so easily to go into stress mode.
One of the meditation techniques I use aims directly towards healing your relationship with your body and physical world. This is because one of our main negative beliefs is that there is something wrong with our body or our world. When these beliefs are healed, our relationship to our bodies and the world will change in the most uplifting ways. I used to judge my body so harshly, but when I use this technique the judgments are replaced with love and gratitude.
It is through meditation and yoga that I have learned to love my body more and let go of the destructive tendencies of the judgmental parts of the mind. If I have judgments about the body now, I know it is not true, and I have a tool that takes me out of this judgment and into the love of who I am in reality. This love has no judgment over my body.
We can start with treating our bodies in a more conscious way, in the way of knowing that we are not the body, but we are the presence that resides in the body. We are given this body as a tool to experience life and all its wonders. This presence that we are, beyond thinking and negative judgments, already loves this body unconditionally. It might be easier to love and appreciate this temple of the body, when we don’t identify with it as “me”, but still love the body and stay present within it. When we grow up we tend to forget who we are and start identifying with our thinking and our bodies, in this way we often start to focus more on what the body looks like or what is wrong with our body, instead of focusing on enjoying being in the body. Let us aim for enjoying and loving our bodies like we were kids again, and knowing that we are this conscious presence that wants to experience the joy of having a body and walking on this planet in love.
If you look at a little child dancing, you know that they are not preoccupied with how they look or with judging the body. They are only enjoying the experience of how it feels to be in a dancing body. We would be so much happier if we started to treat our bodies as innocently and loving as we did when we were children, before we learned to criticize our selves and before we were exposed by the false image of what is beautiful and what is not, through media.
In meditation you can change your relationship to thoughts, you can view the judgmental thoughts of the mind without identifying with them. When we practice this with closed eyes, it will also become easier to step out of judgments in our daily life. Meditation brings more appreciation, when we find a technique that aids us in releasing the subconscious negative beliefs that holds us back.
- You can close your eyes and settle your awareness inside your heart, allow your shoulders to drop and your breath to become calm, allow your belly to rest and be seated in a comfortable position.
- Now imagine the miracle that is your body, all the cells in the body that are constantly working to keep the body healthy. The cells that are fighting off viruses and bacterias. Your breath that brings oxygen into your blood and gives your cells what they need, the cells capacity to absorb what it needs and let go of what it doesn’t need. All the organs that are working to keep the body healthy, the endocrine system that are communicating to keep a balance in the body, the nervous system that connects every part of the body.
- Feel the gratitude within you as you smile to your body, thank your body for the job it is doing non-stop.
- If resistance comes up, allow it to come up, give it space. For instance if you have been ill, we can have anger or sadness towards the body, allow emotions to emerge and allow it space.
- Continue to expand your awareness around your body and inside your body.
- Smile to your heart and let your heart smile to all of your cells in the body. Imagine all your cells vibrating with a stronger light when you give them your awareness and gratitude.