On Valentine's Day of this year my dear friend dragged me kicking, screaming and tantruming like a 2-year-old to Hot Yoga. First, I had devoted 33 year to NOT becoming a "morning person." Second, the idea of sitting in a hot room and stretching did not appeal to me. I grumpily rolled out my yoga mat and laid on the floor.
The yoga instructor instantly jilted me.
"Welcome everyone. I'm so glad you're here. What a perfect day to practice yoga. Valentine's Day. In a world where we're always giving of ourselves, the most important love we can practice is self love."
Self love? It's something I hadn't thought about for a while. I wasn't there to down dog or up dog or "Flip the dog". I was there for a spiritual purpose and I didn't even know it. My soul needed me to go inward and dig deep and be vulnerable and open up to the practice of self love.
For a long time I confused self love with selfish love. They are not the same. Self love is attacking the inner voice that's constantly doubting. Am I an ok Mom? Am I a decent wife? Friend? Sister? Daughter? Employee? _____________? It's the analytical side of the brain that shows up just before bed or a big meeting or after an important conversation with the bosses' bosses' boss. Did I say that right? It's the doubting voice and boy did motherhood give this voice a megaphone.
Self love is taking that voice, wrapping duct tape around it, pouring gasoline on it, stomping on it 8 times before setting fire and throwing it into white water rapids. Self love is ripping the head off the devil on your shoulder that's keeping you small and in your head. I've lived in that place before. It's an easy place to reside. We're wired for it, but on Valentine's Day this year I decided it was ok to devote a little time to the inside while I still carried on with my most important jobs of Mom, Wife and full time employee.
It's ok to carve out time each day devoted to self love.
Do you know what my favorite sound is now? When I arrive early to Hot Yoga (5:50 am) and my new friends on the same quest for self love roll out their mats.