The path to peace with ourselves is paved through the behaviors and habits we do every day. The big insights and ah-ha moments are important for sure, but change takes action.
Maybe you decided to try offering yourself some compassion. Maybe you have decided to begin a relationship of peace with your body and finally end that damn war. Maybe you realize that in constantly being mean and angry with yourself, there possibly might be another way. But you don’t know where to start.
Here are some ideas for daily action to start showing some love to your body. You might not feel the love right away but as they say “Fake it ’til you make it.” Soon your brain and heart will pat attention and get the message.
- Pay attention to your body. We live so much of our lives in our heads, lost in the constant narrative in our brains. Turn your attention a couple of times a day to your body. Do a gentle body scan? How do your feet feel right now? Can you feel any sensations of wind or tempature on your skin? What is happening in your hips, stomach, shoulders? Where is there tension? Where is there ease? You can do this when you first wake up, or when you are laying down to go to sleep. One of my favorite times is pausing for a moment to check in with my body before I eat.
- Move your body. Our bodies actually love to move. We are built for it. I have been loving doing a five minute movement flow first thing in the morning (Thanks to Max Shank for that idea!!). It gets my body set up well for the day. As you already know from reading this blog for any length of time I also get lots of strength training. Walking is great. Yoga is great. Dancing is great. Doing what brings you joy in movement is great. Just a few minutes a day can make a big difference.
- Fuel your body. Nourishing food allows us to live our lives to the fullest. Too little and we have no energy to do what we need to do. Too much and we don’t feel well to do what we want to do in life. Finding the right amount for you to fuel what your life brings for you. Finding the balance and variety you need to feel awake and alive. Savoring the precious meal in front of you – slowing down and allowing yourself to have it and enjoy it.
- Rest your body Busyness and sleep deprivation are common practice these days. If there is a magic pill at all, sleep is it. It is our reset and our renewal. Prioritize good sleep and it can turn your world around.
- Choose kind words when thinking or talking about your body. You may not have a magazine cover body like you think you want but it is no reason to be mean to yourself. Your body is an amazing machine that goes through zillions of processes on a cellular level all the time just to get us up and running every day. Are you breathing well today? Did you get up out of bed? Are your legs carrying you around? Are your arms helping you with things you need to do? Are you hearing the birds outside? Are you seeing the sun, your family and friends, facebook today? Then you have plenty of reasons to find kind loving words to yourself and the amazing body you have. The more you practice this, the easier it gets.
Show yourself love every day. Life is too short to do anything but love who we are and this body that we have.