Love yourself the way you would love your child – Self love in action


If you have been following my ramblings this may you will know that this month I have dedicated may as the month of self love in practice. My journey with self-love practice changes each year. Some years it is all about pampering, some years boosting my internal sense of self worth, some years have just been about giving myself time to do what I wanted to do. But this year has been about self love on a time deficit!  I have had one of the busiest Mays in many a year and more than ever I need to take care of myself. And it’s made me realise something really important about self-love practice.

Love is the foundation upon which all healthy lives are built upon.

I mean it should be obvious -right? We all know that love makes the world go around. It is love that is the foundation of all of our most important relationships with our partners, our children, our family and the gods (however you dom or don’t define them.) It is love that nurtures powerful growth, allows people to thrive and blossom.

So it makes sense that loving ourselves in the way we love, say our children is the foundation for us truly growing, blossoming and reaching our full potential.

And from this thought I have been cultivating a new approach to self-love.

What if we loved ourselves the way we love our children?

Now wouldn’t that be something!

Think about it. We love our children unconditionally, despite their flaws, the tantrums, the mistakes and the frustrations. Why not apply that same grace to ourselves? I found this idea has completely turned around my idea of self-love adn how to put it into action. All of a sudden the face masks and candles have gone out of the window (well back in the cupboard). And what has replaced this surface level self love practice is a deeper rooted, more nurturing form of self love than I have ever experienced before.

And it’s based on the roots of good parenting!

There are certain absolute truths that are the keys to being a good parent, and raising your child- despite the lack of a handbook. The ones I think we can all agree on are the following:

  • Loving unconditionally
  • Encouraging passions and personal growth
  • Setting boundaries
  • Nurturing the body with good food and rest
  • Fostering self-responsibility
  • Forgiving and accepting
  • Supporting the through the bad times
  • Celebrating their achievements
  • Telling them how proud we are of them.
  • Putting them first
  • Believing in them.

Now imagine trying to apply these truths to how you raise and take care yourself. Would you allow your child to binge watch netflixs until 3am? Or could you never forgive your child for making a mistake? Of course not. So why do we let ourselves do this things?

Mr T has a saying that can be applied perfectly to that kind of behaviour.- “Det dumb” (That’s stupid).

How about instead you ask yourself

Would I treat my child the way I am treating myself?

And if the answer is no, then change your behaviour. True love is not just all about the roses and the candles. It’s about doing what is right. Taking responsibility. Caring and supporting. And above all accepting someone is exactly as they are. And loving it.

Try loving yourself the way you love your child this week and see how your relationship with yourself changes

Let me know how it goes in the comments below

Have a wonderful  week

Love Emma xxxx

Love yourself as you would love someone else

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How to put Self-love into action today!

We all know that loving ourselves is important. It is the foundation of self-acceptance, any loving relationship and ultimately our self confidence. But as the internet throws this phrase around it can seem quite vague and fluffy.

Now anyone that knows me knows that I like tangible ideas and practical actions, not vague elusive concepts like the phrase self-love. And tangible and practical is something I feel is missing from the self-love concept bandied around out there. And from talking with others I know they feel the same too.

It is easy for us to think of actionable ways to love others—listening to them, helping them, appreciating them—but when it comes to ourselves, love is often just a feeling and not something we can figure out how to practice. So we don’t

And that sucks!

What we want and need the are of self- love to be is something we can put into action every day – but how on earth do you do that?

Well I think I have cracked the code to actionable self love!

Here are my guidelines to putting self-love into action everyday:

Check in with you

We ask our children, our friends and our partners how are you? Did you sleep well? How’s life? But how often do we do that with ourselves? Take time to check in with yourself and see where you need to take care of yourself.

One practical tool you can use is the wheel of life which can help you identify how different areas of your life are going so you can see where to direct your energy.

Another tool is to check in with your self esteem by doing free writing. This is basically automatic writing. So in this case you could try checking in by answering these 3 questions-

  • How do I feel about myself right now? (Be honest write the good and the bad.)
  • Why do I feel like this about myself?
  • What can I do to feel differently/better about myself?

Check in with yourself every day

Prioritize yourself

The most important factor in your life is you. And I don’t mean in a me, me, Me, MEEEE way! Quite simply if you don’t function mentally or physically nothing else will function. Putting others first to the detriment of you is the opposite of healthy living. It is not a sign of being a “good” person. It is an indication of a person who is not living life fully.

So put yourself at the top of your to-do list.

If you need sleep then schedule some. If you need to feel better about yourself make sometime for affirmations or eating food that makes you feel great.

Remember caring for yourself is self preservation.

Reprogram that internal dialogue

We believe the voice we hear the most and the phrases we hear most often. The voice we hear the most is our own inside our head. If that voice is constantly telling you that you suck, are not good enough or don’t deserve  good things, well just guess what you will believe?

Reprogramming our internal dialogue to being kind and loving is one of the most powerful self love tools out there.

Personally I use this amazing worksheet by Jessica Mullen as a weekly reprogramming session. This a great tool as it hits all the learning and therefore remembering tools. When you write it down, read it and speak it you are giving your brain a chance to hear love and REMEMBER it as truth. The more often you do this the more you will find you really feel more comfortable in your own skin!

Reward and celebrate yourself

One of the reasons we knew as children we were loved is by praise. But as adults we get this mostly in the form of a pay rise or winning awards. And there is a lot of competition out there. That’s why we all love our likes on social media. But do we remember to do it for ourselves? Well no not often.

However, nowhere is it written that you can not reward, praise and celebrate yourself!

Write a list of all your awesome qualities, write daily 3 things you are proud of yourself for or give yourself something to look forward to for being the amazing wonderful person you are!

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Before I started to conciously put effort into practicing self-love in action, I really did hate myself. Why ? Because the opposite of self love is comparing yourself to others. And that breeds discontent.

Now of course I do that sometimes, we all do. Yet now I can regroup and remind myself easily why I am awesome, unique and what I give to the world. And that feels amazing!

And even better since really practicing self-love became part of my everyday I can see the vibrations of that energy around me. I have finally found someone I love that loves me the way I deserve to be (and of course I him), I am respected by my peers and colleagues. And I know straight away if someone is a toxic influence in my life and set the healthiest of boundaries.

By putting self love into action I am happier, healthier and I love my life even more than before!

And I know 100% that if you throw yourself into the deep end and practice self-love on a daily basis this will happen to you too!

Come on in the water is lovely! 🙂

Let me know how you are going to make Self-love actionable in your life today in the comments below

Have a beautiful week

Emma-Jane
<3

#reroot #selflove #emmajane #monthofselflove #enjoyyourjourney #loveyourlife

#lifelessons101 – Self love- a little goes a long way

Right now my battery is close to running on empty.  I haven’t spent one weekend at home in 3 weeks due to work and there has been little to no down time. In some ways it might seem ironic that this has been at the start of my self-love month. Such intense working conditions hardly follow the traditional take care of yourself and practice self love advice. Far from it in fact!

However, sometimes that’s life. It can’t all be long bubble baths and weekends in the woods. No matter how much our soul yearns for it.

Yet at times like this we all need TLC and a loving boost. So how in a week where having the time to  brush my teeth and make sure I have trousers on before I leave the house has been nearly impossible have I found time to keep my much needed self-love commitment?

My personal recipe to self-love in an insanely busy schedule focuses on the principle a little goes a long way.

It is comprised of 4 baby steps:

  • Acceptance
  • Doing one nice thing a day for you
  • Delegating and saying no
  • Prioritising sleep

Let me explain…

Acceptance

To alleviate frustration you have to first accept that during this busy period you are not going to have a lot of ‘me time’. That cabin in the woods will, temporarily have to wait. If you get frustrated about not having the time you need for yourself you are creating a whole lot of stress for yourself that you really don’t need right now. Accept that maybe right now you can’t get to the gym as often as you like and enjoy it when you can. Accept that right now you might not be able to make all the healthy meals from scratch we all know we need, grab a pre- made salad and give yourself the love that way.

Remember this does not mean life is always going to be that way. Plan that trip to the cabin in the woods for after your busy period and accept life as it is right now. Accepting you cannot do it all right now is a huge act of self love. Give yourself that gift.

Doing one nice thing a day for you

The key here is keep it simple. This week I have made a daily commitment to moisturising properly after my shower. It is  a little loving thing which takes me maybe 3 minutes and makes me feel great! Self- care is one of the first things we tend to neglect when we are busy so making the extra effort to do something nice for our bodies with minimal time and effort is a real treat during these times. But it could equally be your favorite frappuccino before work or hearing your favorite playlist on your way home.

Commit to doing one nice thing for you every day

This small action will go a long way to boost your energy.  Whether you feel like it or not, making the commitment means you’ll remind yourself on a daily basis to treat yourself with loving kindness.  

That’s pure self love right there!

Delegating and saying no

Lightening your workload and setting healthy boundaries when you are hella busy is an act of self-love. You do not have to do it all and be the superhero all the time. Sometimes it’s good to let someone else have a hero moment too.

Delegate and let someone else be the hero for once!

Last weekend I found myself overwhelmed in my social circle as everyone I hadn’t seen all winter wanted to confide in me or get some advice. Normally not an issue, just not right now. After talking with a few I was so exhausted so I checked in and set a boundary.  I politely told everyone ‘Hey guys, no offence but what I need right now is a short people break”. People respected it and knew it wasn’t personal. In setting my boundary in this way I not only showed people I trust them enough to be vulnerable and that I love myself too. A total win-win!

If you saw a friend or colleague overloaded you would want to help (if you could) so don’t be afraid to love yourself enough to ask for help.

Prioritising sleep

Prioritise your sleep

There is no argument that we all need sleep. Even more so when we are working in hyper drive mode. Prioritising sleep, at a busy and stressful time is simply good self love in practice. Yes there many other things you might want to do.  But if you don’t sleep you can’t do anything! Prioritise your shut eye now and you will not collapse during the first rest break you get. Quite simply love yourself enough to allow yourself to rest.

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Self -love practice doesn’t have to be complicated. Especially when you are run off your feet a little truly does go a long way. So instead of dropping self love and kindness during your busiest times, simplify. Follow my recipe and you will find it boosts your energy without loosing you time or complicating matters.

What little act of self love can you commit to today? Let me know in the comments below

Have a lovely week

Emma-Jane <3  

Keep self love simple – tips to being kind to yourself when you don’t have much time!

When we think of self love  it often conjures up images of massages, luxury, pampering and oodles of time to invest in ourselves. However, when life is busy time to invest in self love can be the last thing on our minds. And that is often when we need a little self-love the most. Yet we don’t all have the luxury of booking a day off in the spa.   

So do you manage to be kind to yourself when you don’t have much time?

Keep it simple!

Being kind to your self and practicing self-love doesn’t need to be time consuming or elaborate. There are many little things you can do to take care of yourself in a busy time consumed schedule.

Here are my 5 top self love tips you can put into action straight away and give yourself the kind treatment and love you deserve.

Take 2 minutes to appreciate yourself

A little appreciation goes a long way. Grab a journal, google keep or a post it and write down 3 things you appreciate about yourself.

It could be that you are a good friend or partner or that you are doing well at your job. The things you appreciate don’t just have to be big things. Maybe just that you made yourself dinner or went to work even when you wanted to stay home.

The important thing is to appreciate yourself both for the little things and the things you may take for granted and not just for the bigger accomplishments.

Get the big tasks out of the way

If you have a busy overwhelming schedule you might have a big task you really don’t want to do. For me this often looking a my finances. The challenge is that by not doing it you are not taking care of yourself and it can sit like a pit of stress in your stomach. Grab that big task get it done and over with is an act of self-love. By doing it you will make your load lighter and easier to bear. What could be kinder.

Nourish yourself

We know that good food and nourishment is important so make that an act of self love. Whether it is your favourite cup of tea in the morning, a walk at lunch or eating your favourite dinner, give your body something to lift the spirits and nourish your body will always make you feel better.

Make time for a mini pamper session

Now you may not have time for the full routine. But using 1 more minute to moisturize, use a little hair oil is not going to wreck your day’s plans. Giving yourself a 5 minute hand massage or even  doing 10 mins of yoga will make you feel taken care of. An investment in your own health.

Sing along to your favourite happy song!

Indulge yourself by listening to your favourite happy song and sing along! Allowing yourself to be happy in a busy day is an act of self love. So while you are making dinner or driving to work bring a smile to your face with some music you love.

There are many little ways in which we can be kind to ourselves and make self love a simply daily practice. These are but a few suggestions.

What can you do in 3 minutes today to give your self a little love and kindness?

Share your self love rituals in the comments so we can inspire each other !

HAve a wonderful week

Emma-Jane <3

Take a little time to make your soul happy

Lifelessons101 – Are you stuck in a personal development burnout?

I love my life, I really do. I love my job, my home, my man. So it came as a shock when I realised I wasn’t feeling entirely satisfied with the way things are. Not only unsatisfied I felt drained of all energy and constantly tired, even though I am living close to my perfect life. I was perplexed! How could I not be feeling satisfied? Why am I so exhausted? My life is great. It simply didn’t make sense. I needed some objective perspective. So I contacted my amazing coach and mentor for help, and he came with a mind-blowing perspective. I am suffering from personal development burnout. And by burnout, I am not referring to the psychological condition caused by years of stress. I mean burned out by the effort of overworking yourself on the personal development path.

Apparently, personal development burnout is a thing and actually quite common. (Phew good to know I’m normal). Just as with any hobby its possible to go too far over the edge. Or worse make your development into a chore, which then initiates the shame cycle when you don’t do it. For me, my dissatisfaction was coming from a universal classic. I am not yet exactly where I want to be. The exhaustion is simply that in my quest to improve myself I have been pushing myself to my limits and beating myself up for not being where I want to be right now. That cycle of self-blame took my energy and because I wasn’t seeing the results I wanted all had become a chore.

Personal development burnout seems to be an integral part of the journey. As my coach said life can’t be perfect and blissful all the time. The burnout comes when you need to shift. To create a balance. To grow in a different way. It’s a level up on a computer game. The frustration before the prize. However, unlike in a computer game instead of pushing ourselves harder, personal development burnout creates the opportunity to let go.

If you relate to this, you’re not alone. I and many others get you.

While personal development can provide valuable resources to get you through some challenging times, if you find yourself falling into the impatient, frustration trap and cycle of guilt as I did then it’s time to recoup, reassess and change what you are doing so it works for you. After this is your personal growth no-one else’s. So it has to work for you.

Recovering from a burnout at it’s worst can take a long, long time. However, with the kind of personal development level up burnout, I am talking about it is possible to recover quickly if you consciously take actions. Here are the phases and actions I am working through to get me back on top in a healthy path of natural growth.

Phase 1: Stop reaching for whatever you have been reaching for

The first order of business is to interrupt the pattern. Once you stop the pattern of thoughts and feelings that got you to burn out, that’s when recovery begins.

Ask yourself:

  • What have I been obsessed with that feels unreachable?
  • What is my biggest fear if I stop reaching?
  • What would it look like to surrender?

The scariest thing about letting go is that you don’t know how the world will look afterwards. Allow this process to calm your nerves to letting go.

Phase 2: Acknowledge how far you have come

If you have got into this burnout you will have grown. Although you are feeling worn out there has been progression. Look at when you started your journey and write a list of your achievements since that time. Sometimes just seeing what you have done already will help to boost your energy levels.

Phase 3: Take a break

Now stop take a break. As soon as you can. Book a holiday or a few weeks off. Make your health priority number 1. You need to refuel and do some serious TLC work. Cancel social arrangements. I don’t give a damn about how people may feel let down you need a break. Getting into the guilt cycle is all about your ego. It’s your ego that wants to be recognised to get the prize. Right now you need to feed your soul not your ego Step away from social media. Read a book. Get a massage. Sit in your garden. Sleep. Train. Swim. Do what gives you energy and peace. At this stage you need to make your health your priority. Without you nothing works. Your body is your team and support system. So take care of you and your health.

And for at least 14 days do not think about your personal development or your goals. Just be you for a change. You are perfect as you are.

Phase 4: Clear out

One of the things that feeds the guilt factor is the constant bombardment of social media and in our inbox of all the things we could be doing to be better or have greater lives. I have found it incredibly refreshing to unsubscribe from 90% of the personal development newsletters I belonged to. My inbox is clearer and it is surprising how less pressured I feel. Have an electronic clear out and choose what influences you want in your life and what is suepurpulus. Do the same with the books. (All of us personal development junkies have a pile we haven’t read yet). Choose one. Just one and put the rest away.  Have a look at your daily and weekly habits. Which ones make you feel good. Which don’t. Guess what you are gonna do? That’s right get rid of all the ones that don’t make you feel good. Clearing out makes everything feel better and less pressured.

Phase 5: Appreciate your abundance

Gratitude is one of the simplest and most powerful tools we have. Being grateful makes us appreciate our here and now. And if you like me have been focusing on the end post, then you have forgotten to enjoy your journey here and now. Practise gratitude for your life at least once a week and appreciate the abundance of your now.

Phase 6: Listen to your inside voice

Make sure you are listening to you inside voice. It is there to guide you. One of the reasons burnout happens is because we don’t act on the signals our body is giving us. If it doesn’t feel right, don’t do it. Follow your gut feelings before you say yes. Your gut knows what you want better than your mind does. So for once let it lead you.

Phase 7: Refocus

As you begin to have more energy (as a constant presence, not just on intermittent days) you are ready to refocus your personal development ideas. Look at what you were doing. Remove anything that was either setting off your guilt complex, you I should be doing this voice and especially anything that drained you energetically. Be HONEST with yourself. Don’t keep practices because other people have told you they work or you need to do. Keep what works for you.

Now choose one, (Yes I said one), area of your personal development you would like to work on and honestly feel energetically able to commit to. (Again listen to your gut). Make this the priority for the next 6 months.  I would also recommend here trying something new. It can be an energy boost to use a new technique for personal growth after burnout.

Phase 8: Take baby steps forwards

You cannot jump from burnout back to full power. It doesn’t work like that. If you try and throw yourself into a massive lifestyle change all at once you will end right back at burnout. So take baby steps. Do one little thing each week, Then each day. Build up slowly and you will find it becomes manageable. Baby steps make us stronger.

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Give yourself time to recover from personal development burnout. At least 6- 8 months to work through the phases Burnout is a sign of not listening to yourself. It is the most important lesson we gain from this experience is to centralise and make ourselves important. There’s a fine line between self-improvement and personal development burnout. Allow your burnout to show you where that line is and learn how to keep your balance for healthier and stronger growth.

Have a happy weekend <3

An empty lanternprovides no light.jpg

Why is self-love so important in your life? (Take this quiz to find out)

When I was a kid self-love was not something you heard about. Growing up in the 80’s in a middle-ish class British family, it was expected that you would be academically astute, career focused and productive in every aspect of your life. The pressure was on and that was considered a good thing. No-one talked about taking breaks or taking care of yourself. It was all about what you did in work and play. A strong contrast to today where even a 2nd grader can give you an informed explanation of self-love! There is so much of hype about self-love. Today it is not only the social norm, healthy self-love is known to be one of the keys to confidence and contentment in life. We automatically know that self-love is important.

However how often do you stop and think why is self-love important to you? I mean it’s all well and good the specialists, the coaches and psychologists and the non-specialists on the internet telling you self-love is important. If you never decide that self-love is something important for you, you will never take the conscious step to loving you. And in my world that is a sad state of affairs.

For me working with self-love affects 3 areas in my life. It strengthens my self-esteem, my self-power and my sense of security. The more empowered and loved I feel in these three areas the more content I feel in life. Now maybe that will be the same for you maybe not. However today I have one goal. And that is to help you find out why working with self-love is important to you here and now in your life.

So here for you is a little exercise to inspire you to get clear on why self-love is important in your life and which of the three areas you need to work on right now. It takes only a few minutes and it will be the catalyst for making your journey in life more wonderful, powerful and content. (Not bad for a few minutes thinking right?!)

Ask yourself the following questions (and write down your answers)

Self-esteem

  1. Do I feel loved in my life? YES/NO
  2. Do I feel confident? YES/NO
  3. Do I feel devastated if I fail? YES/NO
  4. Do others opinions of me matter more than my own? YES/NO
  5. Do I feel I deserve love? YES/NO
  6. Am I able to laugh at my own mistakes? YES/NO
  7. Do I like myself? YES/NO
  8. Do I think positively about myself most of the time? YES/NO
  9. Do I believe there is nothing about me that is loveable? YES/NO
  10. Do I change myself to make others like me? YES/NO

Answers:

  1. Yes= 1 No= 2
  2. Yes= 1 No= 2
  3. Yes=2 No=1
  4. Yes=2 No=1
  5. Yes=2 No=1
  6. Yes= 1 No= 2
  7. Yes= 1 No= 2
  8. Yes= 1 No= 2
  9. Yes=2 No=1
  10. Yes=2 No=1

If you have a low score you have high self-esteem. If you have a high score you have a low self-esteem

Self-love strengthens self-esteem by increasing your self-worth and your self-confidence. By working with self-love in this area you will learn to love yourself exactly as you are, seeing the value in you. You begin to dampen the internal negative judges and ultimately come to a place of acceptance and valuing yourself. In a life with high self-esteem, you are free to enjoy the experiences in life without wasting your energy on talking yourself down.

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Self-power

  1. Do I need praise and positive feedback to feel great about myself? YES/NO
  2. Do I feel I am worth good things in life? YES/NO
  3. Do I feel successful? YES/NO
  4. Can I do things as well as other people? YES/NO
  5. Do I feel I can overcome a crisis? YES/NO
  6. Am I very critical of myself and my abilities? YES/NO
  7. Do I make decisions based on other people’s opinions? YES/NO
  8. Am I easily discouraged? YES/NO
  9. Do I believe I can reach my goals? YES/NO
  10. Do I feel like a strong person? YES/NO

 

Answers:

  1. Yes=2 No=1
  2. Yes= 1 No= 2
  3. Yes= 1 No= 2
  4. Yes= 1 No= 2
  5. Yes= 1 No= 2
  6. Yes= 2 No=1
  7. Yes= 2 No=1
  8. Yes= 2 No=1
  9. Yes= 1 No= 2
  10. Yes= 1 No= 2

 

If you have a low score you have high self -power

If you have a high score you have a low self -power

Self -love strengthens self-power by empowering you. It creates resilience to handle challenges, belief in yourself to reach your goals and gives you strength and determination to continuously move forward in your life. Self-love work in relation to your self-power gives you an energy boost and a strength of spirit.

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Security

  1. Am I able to set clear personal boundaries? YES/NO
  2. Do I feel nervous when meeting strangers? YES/NO
  3. Do I find it easy to confront people? YES/NO
  4. Do I get nervous and unconfident when people criticise me? YES/NO
  5. Am I able to express my opinion easily? YES/NO
  6. Do my fears and inferiority stop me from doing what I want to do? YES/NO
  7. Do I feel I will succeed no matter what? YES/NO
  8. Do I need other people to make me feel safe? YES/NO
  9. Do I accept myself as I am? YES/NO
  10. Do I like to be alone? YES/NO

Answers:

  1. Yes= 1 No= 2
  2. Yes= 2 No=1
  3. Yes= 1 No= 2
  4. Yes= 2 No=1
  5. Yes= 1 No= 2
  6. Yes= 2 No=1
  7. Yes= 1 No= 2
  8. Yes= 2 No=1
  9. Yes= 1 No= 2
  10. Yes= 2 No=1

 

If you have a low score you have high sense of security in your life. 

If you have a high score you have a low sense of security in your life

Self love strengthens your security by simply making you less insecure within yourself and of your abilities. You become self sufficient. When you can make yourself feel safe you do not need to rely on anyone else because you know you are always there for you. Self-love focusing on creating security gives you a powerful foundation to take on the world and feel contentment with your life.

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So now you have an idea of why self-love is important in your life and hopefully which areas you want to focus upon. In the last month Re:Root has been focusing on the art of self love. Check out the links below to some of our most recent articles to find out how you can give yourself a much needed self-love boost today

HAve a beautiful week <3

#lifelesson101 – 9 steps to recreating your body image by honouring your body with self-love
#lifelessons101 – 5 incredibly powerful self love habits

An easy ABC guide to making self-love a daily practise

The 7 steps to Self love – the key to building a relationship with yourself.

Self-love is the goal.jpg

#lifelesson101 – 9 steps to recreating your body image by honouring your body with self-love

As I sit here at the end of a week where my self-love is in focus I am surprised to find myself feeling sluggish and worn down. Surely I should be feeling energized and in my inner goddess? I was highly confused by this predicament until I began working on the coming new moon ceremony for our local women’s circle. The theme this month is honoring our body as a sacred temple. It was a Eureka moment! I realized that whilst I had been working on my mental self-love processes all week I had forgotten one very important element of self-love. Honoring my body.

Now we all know that body image crisis is a huge modern crisis today. Schools are filled with unsure teens with low self-confidence, numbers of people with eating disorders are on the rise and yet the fashion and image industry dominates all forms of media. It is insane. (Yes that is my professional opinion). However, it is not a new phenomenon. If you look at cultural propaganda, even in the stone age, we as a species promoted our idea of the perfect male and female form. (Only then for women bigger was better. Male body image fashions have always leaned towards the strong and muscley, which proves women are more consistent in their tastes!)

So if we have this inbuilt need as a species to define which body type is attractive at a particular point in time how then do we break with this cultural tradition and honor our bodies as beautiful. Just as they are. Not as how society tells us we should be. Wauw well that’s a can of worms to open and one that could keep us here all week. However, I believe there is a simple answer. Really I do. I believe that by taking small practical actions we can recreate our own body image, find a comfortable place where we can honor our beautiful form and be confident in our bodies despite the world telling us we should be different.

Now, this is not a process we can do overnight. We can’t wave a magic wand and hey presto you love your body. Honouring your body is a process that comes with practice and commitment. Small baby steps, that eventually become habits so familiar you do not notice them. If you are having body image issues and want to resolve them or like me you have simply forgotten to honour your body in the turbulence of a busy life here is a guide to those baby steps to recreating your body image through a practice of self-love.

Remove the outside negative voices

Time for a media detox. Body guilt often gets ignited due to media. If you subscribe to magazines that promote a body type you will never have, then get rid of them. You do not need to consciously or subconsciously compare yourself. Subscribe instead to magazines that nourish your soul. Minimise your social media input, cut back on feeds that you can feel set of your body image guilt.  And Talk back to your TV when you see commercials that use body image to sell products. Talk back to companies with your wallet by NOT buying said products. Buy products that nourish you and you feel good about. Turn off the ads. Remember media pushed body image guilt is just as unhealthy for you as a toxic relationship. When you stop feeding it, it cannot affect you.

Remove the internal voices

The internal negative body judge is in all of us. And it’s a battle to get it to shut up. However, it is possible. One of my favorite ways is when my mind says I don’t like …. I add but I do like…. Sometimes I need to write this down to reinforce the process, it works.

Compliment yourself in ways that have nothing to do with your looks. We tend to focus so much on what we see in the mirror and overlook our many other amazing qualities. Are you a good cook? A successful person? How about a warm, caring, friendly, or positive person? Make a list of 10 things you like about yourself that have nothing to do with your looks.

A great way to change your thoughts is to change your passwords. Imagine typing in ilovemybody 20 times a day. The more you use it the more it sticks in your mind.

Ask your body for forgiveness

If we hurt a friend we apologise so why not do the same with your body? By apologizing to your body for ways you may have neglected or abused it, you communicate to your body genuine affection. Your body has a consciousness of its own and you can expand your body’s consciousness in positive ways by writing a letter of apology to it. Don’t get into your guilt, focus on responsibility for your actions.

Nourish where it’s needed

We often neglect parts of our body in our busyness. Think about how you shower. Your self care routine. Do you stand on your feet all day but don’t give your tired feet a foot bath or a massage? Do you work at a computer all day but forget to stretch out? Do you work outside and not mosturise your skin? A foot massage, mousterising or even stretching can take s 10 minutes out of your day max.  Nourish the parts of you that need it daily and you will feel reengerised and cared for.

Make self-care a regular thing

On the subject of care, how often do you do it? I have in the last few years got into the regular habit of self-care. A face mask, a hair mask, a trip to the sauna. (Gods I am grateful for the Scandinavian habit of having a sauna at every swimming pool!) I aim to do some physical self-care every 14 days and I feel great at the end. All rejuvenated and loved. Set some dates in your diary for your self-care days and treat your body as well as you would treat a loved one.

Bless your food

Honor your body by honoring your food. Take time before meals to be grateful for the food you are about to eat and the effect it will have on your body.  As you do this mindfully and positivity you will notice a calming inside of you as well as a feeling o. This honors your relationship with food, with your body, and with yourself. As well as gently making you conscious of what you are putting into you body and why you need it.

Dress to honour your body

Dress for the body you have today, not the body you will have or had before. You deserve to look and feel your best right now. Clean out your closet and donate all of the too-small , don’t wear anymore or used to wear clothes to others in need. Keep only the clothes that fit and flatter you and most importantly that make you feel good.

One of my favourite sayings is “What thoughts am I wearing today?” If you want people to be positive, treat you with the respect and value you for your true worth, then you need to show them how you love, respect and value yourself.

Look in the mirror as you dress in the morning. Ask yourself –

-What thoughts am I wearing today?

-What am I telling the world about me?

-What message do I want to send into the world today?

Show the world the beauty you see inside you, how much you value you, externally. You will find that people reflect it back to you. Dress  to honour the body and thoughts you have.

Treat your body with love

We all know that exercise and eating healthily is good for us. Personally, I suck at this. Mr. T is one of those uber healthy people that can avoid everything that is bad and do a lot of exercise. I am more of a Dawn French chocolate loving, duvet on the sofa kind of person. However, our bodies both deserve love and respect.  If you like me cringe at the thought of a gym and love the salty fattiness of Chips, then here is a trick that will help.

Listen to your body and make conscious choices. Eat when you are hungry. Eat until you know you are full and not more. Ask yourself if you are eating from physical need or emotional need, from habit or boredom? Importantly notice how you feel after you eat. If a certain food makes you feel bad then don’t eat it.

Similarly with exercise. Listen to you body. If you feel tired when lifting you need to build strength. If you are having back pain it is likely yoga and stretching will help. Stairs are hard work then you need some cardio. Find exercise forms that fit into your life and follow your needs. Change the focus of your exercise from I have to do this to be healthy to this is an act of gratitude to your body for it allowing you to be alive and experience life.

Thank your body every night

Before you go to sleep at night take a moment to check in with your body. If you like you can do a body scan. Thank your body for being there for you. It could be you say something like. ‘I am grateful to my heart for pumping my blood around my body’, ‘I am grateful to my lungs for breathing in oxygen’. Or you can be more general. Just take a moment to recognise what you body has done for you today and be grateful

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Honouring your body will recreate your self-image to one filled with love and beauty for your physical form. Remember without that form you would not be here. It is your responsibility to take care of it. Not in the way society tells you to but in the way you know to be right for you. Treat your body with respect and it will respect you, and so will other people.

So the question remains, how will you honour your body today?

Let me know in the comments

Have a lovely weekend <3

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#lifelessons101 – 5 incredibly powerful self love habits

This week has all been about self-love for me and my clients. We have been committing to the act of loving ourselves and making that our primary focus of our week. It’s been amazing and I do feel filled with confidence, empowered and in that pink hazy bubble of love you get in a relationship, the only difference is that this time it is with myself!

Over this week we have been trying different practices. Simple, easy and practical actions we could take to strengthen our self-love. And the results are in! Here are the most powerful 5 self-love habits that you can practice to connect with the powerful and magical force which is loving yourself.

Changing that negative dialogue

That voice inside of your head that keeps telling you that you are no good. That voice needs to go. But how? One of my clients this week had great success with a written exercise that drowned out the negative voices into nonexistence in only a week!

She carried a small notebook wherever she went and as soon as her brain said I am not good at…. She wrote in her book 2 sentences.

I am not good at …………………….. But I am good at ……………………………

The things she was good at, did not have to be gigantic things. So, for example, a sentence could be;

I am not good at sales but I am good at helping my colleagues

I am not good at dancing but I am good at baking.

Quick simple and very ,very effective.

Be proud

Ohhh. Not many of us find it easy to be proud of ourselves. Others, yes. Ourselves, no way. So I challenge you to try this. Every day write down in a notebook 2-3 things you are proud of yourself of. It doesn’t have to be huge. Maybe you went to work even though you felt ill. You did the washing up when you wanted to sit and do nothing. Or it could be something big too. In your journal write out each sentence within full – e.g.

I am proud of myself today for……………………..

Being proud of ourselves gives us a little dopamine hit (similar to the feeling of leveling up in a game). A little positivity boost to brighten your day and your self-love at the same time.

Make time for yourself important

On the todo list what we really want to do (and often what we really need ends up at the bottom of the list). You make your partner, your kids, your work important, without you none of this could work. So why not make yourself important too. Setting time aside for your day and planning how you will use that time is really important. I find that making one evening or a couple of hours for self-care a weekly activity is a beautiful way to show yourself some love and give yourself so need r and r.

Daily self-love worksheet

My new favorite thing! Jessica Mullen made this wonderful concept. It is a great way to start or end the day by being kind and loving to yourself. I would highly recommend doing this every day it takes 5 mins and is an amazing self-love booster.

http://jessicamullen.com/2011/02/19/the-daily-self-love-worksheet/

Love letter to yourself

We all love reading letters (especially as letters that are not bills are so rare these days). On the 1st May every year I write myself a love letter. And then I read it out loud. It always starts “Dear Emma-Jane” and it always ends “I will always be here for you. I love you

Writing and reading yourself is incredibly powerful and moving. I would be lying if I said I had never cried during this process. When you write to yourself you know exactly what it is you want someone who loves you to say and then you say it.

If you could write yourself a letter, what would you tell yourself?

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When you hold yourself in high esteem, you tend to have more enjoyment and a more positive attitude toward the future. And so do the people around you. When you love yourself, you accept yourself. You take pride in yourself.  And other people will too. Self-love not only feeds your soul, but your spirit, and emotional well-being. And most importantly it frees you up from the negative extra weight low confidence brings, allowing you to do, be and have whatever you want from life. Try one of these today and I guarantee you will want to do one tomorrow because they feel great!

Have a beautiful weekend <3

 

Love yourselffirst andeverything else falls into place.jpg

An easy ABC guide to making self-love a daily practise

One of my goals for this year is to work on my self-love and build self-love into my life routine. Luckily the internet has a mountain of advice and inspiration. However, a lot of it is very vague. I understand, and practice, the art of non-negative thinking. I remind myself to stop the guilt cycles and use gratitude regularly. And from this intermittent focus, I know that I love and appreciate myself more. I am more comfortable with who I am and where I am in my life. Yet something is still lacking.

Self-love needs to be something we can realize and feel on a daily basis. I realized recently that my self-love attempts we effective, but sporadic. I want to have a stronger foundation in loving myself- who doesn’t? And the only way to get better at anything is to focus and to practice. Like anything else in life if we make it important we focus on it and grow.  So I have decided to take the next step, level up at self-love, by making the art of self-love a daily practice.

Now as those of you who are regulars at Re:root know, I love practical actions. I think doing something practical enhances our focus and makes for a great reminder (albeit daily or weekly) to focus on personal growth. And like most of you, I have a busy schedule. So I needed to create a daily self-love practice which didn’t eat into my schedule but was manageable and easy to implement. Sounds impossible? Well with a little prep and commitment it’s as easy as ABC. If you would like to boost your self-love a little every day, here is a practical guide you can use to initiate your self-love journey.

A:  Analyse your options

First, do a little google-fu (or check out some of the self-love ideas on my blog by searching under self love) and find some inspiration of self-love practices you would like to try. Some of my favorites are:

However, there are millions of ideas out there so dig deep and find a bunker of inspiration. Now write all of your ideas down. And note what are things you could easily do on a daily basis, weekly basis, monthly basis.

B: Build your practice

Now build a practice up for this month. Don’t try to do it all at once. I would recommend adding one simple self-practice into your morning routine and another into your after work/ end of the day routine. In your week try to add one bigger self-love practices and in your calendar plan one of the biggest self-love activities you would like to try. So you could end with a plan that looks like this

Daily:

Mirror work in the morning.

Give me a hand massage on the way home from work

Weekly:

Buy me flowers or give myself a facemask

Monthly:

Have an evening at home with a good book, music, nice food, candles and wine. Write me a love letter.

Try out different activities and find out what works for you.

C: Choose and continue

After a few weeks, you will have found what works in your life rhythm. So choose the activities that fit, that you like and that gives you the biggest boost of self-love and then simply continue your practice. Keep self-love activities an important feature of your to-do list and weekly planning. By making it important to love ourselves we show other people how much we respect ourselves and they will begin to mirror that behavior in the way they deal with you.

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Self-love takes time and dedication. You cannot get up one morning and say now I love myself completely and implicitly. However, with regular practice you will find that eventually loving yourself is as second nature as breathing. May 1st is the ancient Celtic festival of Beltane, the festival of love. So I have decided to give myself a self-love boost with an intensive week of self-love practice just because I can! I can highly recommend it as a way of checking in and kick-starting a journey of making your relationship with yourself the most important one you have. Let me know in the comments your favorite self-love practices and lets’ inspire each other in love.

Have a beautiful week <3

To fall in lovewith yourselfis the first secret tohappiness (1)

Celebrate love, not romance, on Valentine’s day

Since the 1st January retailers have been preparing for Valentines day and cynics have been rolling their eyes at the hearts, cupids and other paraphernalia paraded at this time of year. Personally today I think Valentine’s day gets a bad wrap. There are hundreds of articles out there against valentine’s day, thousands of people actually ‘hate’ valentines day and personally this confuses me. I get the hatred of the crash commercialism of the day (it’s the same as Christmas, Halloween and Easter) but to ‘hate’ a day about celebrating love. To me that seems illogical. We know that “It’s love that makes the world go round”, Love is one of the many things that makes life’s journey interesting, it’s what makes the world a better place. How can a day that celebrates this wonderful thing be hated? Because of our associations with valentine’s day.

Today Valentine’s day is a huge consumer festival marketed at couples. However I don’t remember “love” as being something only couples share. I am pretty sure we all have someone (if not everyone)we love, in our lives right now. We love our family, our children, our friends, our pets and yes even our favourite celebrities. We love alot and often. It is truly a gift we have been given the ability to love. For me this is what valentine’s day is about. Celebrating this gift and the people and things that we love in our lives. For me valentine’s day is about taking one day to celebrate all the good in my life. All the joy. All the wonder. A day where I can express all of my love. For others and also very importantly for myself.

So instead of rolling your eyes on wednesday when you see the hearts and the roses. How would it feel to remember those you love, to be grateful for the good in your life you have here and now. Wouldn’t that feel great! Wouldn’t your friends and family feel wonderful if you just out of the blue contacted them to say ‘hey I love you ‘. And wouldn’t it feel good to celebrate how wonderful you are by practising some self love. Get out of the consumer hate this valentines day and get into how amazingly lucky you are to love and be loved in your life.

And if you don’t know how, heres a few ideas to get you started:

Love my life

A great way to start valentine’s day is to list all the loves in your life. This can be people, things, memories, pets. Just make a list of all that you love. Start each sentence with I love…….If you are driving to work and don’t have time to write it you can say them out loud. See how much love there is in your life.

Make someone else feel special

Choose a person who you love that your don’t see very often and make them feel special. Maybe it is a little thing like giving your co workers their favourite chocolate, calling your favourite childhood aunt, taking your dog for an extra long walk, or sending a loving message over Facebook to someone you don’t contact often. Little things go a long, long way.

Spread the love

If you want to spread the love even further you could do something nice for someone you don’t know just to make them smile. Or donate to charity. Fill up 10 parking meters. If you want to go all out you could send valentines cards to everyone you know. Fill the office with valentines balloons. Give out 12 roses to people on the train.

Show yourself some self love

Valentine’s day is the best day for self love. And that is also when you are in a relationship. Pamper yourself. Dress fabulously for the day. Go for a spa or give yourself a hand massage. Treat yourself. Buy yourself flowers. Self love affirmations are an amazing way to start and end the day. Looking in the mirror you can say

“I love every part of myself including all of my imperfections, which make me who I am and uniquely lovable” or  “I’m bright, brilliant, and beautiful” or make up your own. Make a happy memory loving yourself this valentine’s day.

Write a love note

Yes I mean it. Write a love note….to yourself. Tell yourself everything you love about you. Write it as though you are your own lover. And I don’t mean explicit and x rated! Write it to celebrate your beauty, as a declaration of love and a declaration of how you will always be there for yourself and promise to care for yourself. Remember Oscar Wilde said ““To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance.” The most important romance.

(You can of course write one for someone else as well, if you want to.)

Hold a love celebration party with your favourite things

Instead of boycotting Valentine’s day why not fill your home with the people you love and celebrate each other. An easy way to do this is to ask everyone to bring their favourite food, drink and game to share. Share the things you love with the people you love and make an amazing memory together!

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Love is a so much healthier and nicer emotion than hate. So take the opportunity this Valentines day gives you to celebrate the love in your life. Love comes in many forms so don’t limit yourself to chocolates, a card or a day hiding under the duvet. You can choose to create this day however you wish and I know that when you put your mind to it you will make a much more beautiful experience for yourself and those you love than all the consumer holiday marketing experts could ever imagine!

Have a lovely week <3

Celebrating love is