The topic of self love or self esteem can sometimes be daunting, you are always seeing meme’s or quotes about loving yourself or how you deserve to be loved. I see these things all over and I do find it a bit irritating because posting a quote on your social media doesn’t make it happen. Sure you may feel inspired for about the two seconds after you see the picture buy can you honestly say by the end of the day you remember?
Here is my view on this topic, and by no means am I an expert, this is just my story. Working on loving the body you are in is a daily task and to me this will not happen with seeing a picture but by actually doing something to change the way you think about you. We all have body image issues, no matter your size or age, this is just a common fact. Everyone has something they don’t like! So what do I do to help myself overcome these obstacles? Well I will let you know when I get through them all…. But what I am doing is defining what my obstacles are. That has what started me on the journey to learn to love the skin I am in, then the weight loss or healthy lifestyle will follow.
First thing I am doing is accepting that my life is great, appreciating all that I have and that I do not have time to spend running on a treadmill for hours (did that), I want to spend my time doing the things that full fill me and exercise is important but it does not have to define your time. Finding the balance is what I am working on first, the balance between life and work, between friends and myself. This is hard but I set boundaries for myself, when I go for a walk I leave the phone behind and enjoy the moment and time with my dogs and nature. I take days off to disconnect and sometimes just be lazy and to be OK with that, sure sometimes I end up pacing and thinking I am wasting time just sitting around but deep down I know I need to. I know my mind is my worst enemy, so I work on this by meditation and I started doing Yoga. Both these things help me to see what I am truly capable of and that I can achieve more than I give myself credit for.
The other thing I changed was deciding to eliminate meat from my life. No this is not going to be a rant about becoming vegan and why everyone should. The choice to do this was due to my overwhelming guilt for eating animals. If anyone knows me knows how truly deep my love of animals goes, I got tired of crying every time I see a cattle or pig truck hauling them (ok I still cry, but it comes from my only heart not from my guilt). The guilt I feel in the pit of my stomach knowing that I contributed to that life for them was bigger than I realized. So if you are an emotional eater like me, well can you guess what happens when I have this guilt?? Up…. I eat. So by taking the guilt of eating animals out, that has helped in many ways for me, food is looked at differently. I am not 100% vegan so there are still some issues I am working on but I have a goal and I know that it won’t happen overnight BUT knowing the effort is being made helps me to release yet another obstacle.
So do you see why I do not feel posting quotes or memes about loving yourself can fix it? I can post pics all day about it but unless you are actually taking the steps then what’s the point? Figure out your obstacles and not punishing yourself for not exercising or for eating that cake. Instead ask yourself why and take the baby steps to change your obstacles, whether this be through therapy or meditations or whatever works for you, but remember that only YOU can make the change, not your friends, not your family… only you. I love myself for taking the steps to changing my own way of thinking, that’s one “tick” off my to do list in the journey to love the skin I am in :)
Santana - owner The Soul Center
Some might find this controversial but I feel very strongly about the importance of having your Reiki Level classes at the right intervals and not back to back or over a period of days. This is why I feel this way, and again this is my feeling based on my own experience and also of the clientele I see that have taken their levels all in one weekend.
The traditional way of teaching Usui Reiki is for the level one class to be min 3 months in between, however I personally recommend more. Reiki to me is not something to rush, this is an energy shift and working on your own energy healing before jumping into the next level I feel is important. The level one is about self healing, and if you have not already been working on this prior to your level one then get ready for a change. Working on your own healing can result in emotional changes and feelings, you are clearing and releasing so during this time it is important to be aware of these shifts. The level one class traditionally is to be followed with a 21 day “cleanse” so to speak, this is how Dr. Usui developed Reiki, he did a 21 day healing cycle which involved fasting meditation and working on the chakra energy. The fasting part is obviously not going to be a major part of modern day reiki but should be considered, even looking at cleaning up your daily diet during your 21 day because you are letting go and releasing so drinking lots of water is key. So if a 21 day cleanse looks to be important than how can taking your level one and two back to back be viewed as the right method?
After receiving the level one attument your life will go through the changes and cleansing of energy, emotions and attachments that no longer serve you thus transcending your energy to a new level. For me level one was profound! I already had gone through several reiki sessions, and had started working with crystals and colors so my healing was already on the go. I truly recommend that you have at least one reiki session before taking your level one. After my level one I worked on my 21 day and my life started to change for the better. My understanding of my own emotions and of those around me became more clear, I found that friends I had were no longer on my same path and I had a harder time relating to them. So the thought of doing this so quickly without taking the time for myself scares me, and I am truly thankful for the amazing teacher I have.
So now you may be looking at level 2 (because level one made you feel so amazing you want to jump into the next one to keep that high going), which again is a major shift in energy. This shift will be more profound than your level one, you are now transcending higher and your energy vibration is much much bigger! So to jump in and take now your level three right after your level 2 without learning and growing with this new energy can be hard for most people. I describe it like learning to jump off the low diving board and just skipping to the highest one without practicing your technique off the second one. You are jumping into water without knowledge of the impact. This is Reiki energy, so all I ask is that when you are pursuing this path, take into consideration the impact it will have. Be respectful of time and yourself, there is no rush to receiving your level 3. It does not make you a better reiki practitioner nor does it ensure you will be more successful in business. Reiki healing is not taken with the end game being a practitioner to gain money, Reiki is about changing yourself and helping others with healing so they can also see that they have the power to be their own healer. Teaching is an honor not a right and should have someone doing this that has experience, follows the traditions and respects the energy to which they are giving. I won’t get into my views of the term Reiki master vs Reiki Level three, I will save that for another post….
If I offended anyone by this post I do apologize, this is only my feelings on the subject and I respect that others may view it differently. That is OK if you do, we are all in this for the same reason which is to enlighten and heal.
Santana, owner of The Soul Center
I am sure most of you know what you have read or heard about how much meditation can help, but do you REALLY know?
Did you know there is scientific proof that meditation alters your brain chemistry almost immediately? Even if you think you are not "doing it right" the simple fact is you are trying and that is the best thing you can do. Getting the hang of meditation does not just happen overnight, it takes practice and time and the willing to put in the effort but the pay off is immediate. Exercising you don't lose wight the first time you step on a treadmill do you? it take time, patience and consistency, but could you imagine if the results were immediate? So think of meditation exercise for your brain, you are working to change your mindset but you don't have to wait for months for it to start working.
Things that can happen with meditation, you will start to think more positive, feel more positive and even have a brighter outlook. If you suffer from depression or anxiety meditation is such a great tool to have. There are even studies showing meditation helping with addictions.
So if you think that it is some religious thing or hippie dippie way of life, please be open to the fact that its not. Is running on a treadmill any of those things so why is exercising your mind any different?
Follow The Soul Center on Youtube, we add on meditations and music we like and you may like too! Once you find what resonates with you, it will become part of your routine and your life.
Santana, owner of The Soul Center and Witches Ink