Negative body image plagues so many individuals. And even with a consistent and fulfilling yoga practice, nasty self-talk, insecurities, and the timeless trap of self-comparison can hijack the yoga glow of the best of us.
For years, I used my self-practice as a tool for change and had a hard time showing up, creating consistency, and having fun. Over the last few years, I’ve looked at my home practice as an opportunity to further love myself, spend time with myself, and be amazed by the capabilities of my body – a total 360 and the start of finding self-love on the yoga mat.
Internalize these four tips and use them to cultivate more self-love through your home practice.
1. Set Your Intentions But Know Your Value
Some of us aspire to eat more greens, find work/life balance, use our quality time in more productive and inspiring ways, and maybe even make lifestyle changes that will result in more energy, increased range of motion, and physical changes like (gasp!) weight loss.
Acknowledge your desire to work towards greater harmony through your set intentions, but declare your current state as beautiful, capable, and enough. Some days it's difficult to accept your body but it's important to keep trying.
2. Know Modifications That Suit Your Body And Know You Are Always Granted Permission To Take Them.
There is often a sentiment that individuals need to fit their body into a certain shape in order to 'do' yoga. This couldn't be farther from the true definition of yoga.
Your body is telling you a story and often has the intellect to guide you into a pose that feels good, and caters to your particular needs. Sometimes, you may need and want to take a different variation, or even change a pose, in order to make it accessible, beneficial, and enjoyable. When this happens—do it.
3. Don't Be Afraid Of Your Body
Don't be afraid to physically move, adjust, back off, or deepen a posture throughout your practice. This may mean that you need to move flesh, muscle, and limbs to access a pose, a deepening, or a modification in order to find a more authentic expression of the pose.
Become more familiar with the intricacies of your body and step into the power that you are.
4. Express Gratitude Through Positive Self-Talk
Turn the edges of your yoga mat into a safe zone filled with positive self-talk, and constant reminders of the power of your breath, body, and self. Use moments of physical difficulty as transitions into quiet declarations of the strength and capabilities of your body.
In pre-meditation, take a scan of your body and litter positive affirmation throughout each section of your being. And always, finish your yoga practice with a moment of self-congratulations and a promise to continue to walk the path of self-love.
Have you found self-love through your home yoga practice?