Something to Say for the Skinny (Beautiful) People Out There

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“You’re so skinny”. A phrase I hear often…and honestly I’m not sure how to take it sometimes. Is that all you can say about a person when you greet them? Maybe I’m used to the phrase, the way it feels, that when I greet someone, I pick out a feature on them that is beautiful. Beautiful smile, clothes, hair, eyes…there is so much to choose from when meeting someone than “you need to eat a hamburger”.

I’m perfectly healthy by the way. I eat just the same as others, veggies, protein, meat, snacks, etc. I do try to eat healthy but that has no affect on my size…it makes me feel better. I practice yoga every day and meditate every morning because I feel better over all after my practice.

I’ve fluctuated between 100lbs to 116lbs my whole life. My ribs tend to show in a bathing suit and my legs are thin. I’ve tried crazy diets of protein shakes, stuffing my face until I couldn’t breathe, just to see the scale jump up for a day.

My “skinniness”, more appropriately my “beautifulness” is in my genes. My metabolism is crazy fast and that’s how I was created.

You can either hate your body or you can love it…it’s your choice.

You can be healthy, or you can eat poorly. I choose to love my body (on most days…hey…I’m not perfect either!) and I choose to eat healthy on most days as well.

For all my fellow skinny girls (and guys) who have tried endlessly to put on the weight society so badly thinks we need, these quotes are for you.

After reading an article on Elephant Journal (here’s the link to her article, awesome, amazing writing you must check out, This Ones For My Skinny Sisters, I was so inspired, I had to to share these with others…

“Authentic self love is crazy sexy, whatever your body looks like” – Bryan Reeves

“Nothing makes a woman more beautiful than the belief that she is beautiful” – Sophia Loren

“Size does not make a difference – we cannot take our bodies with us into eternity” – Thomas Voelker

“Though she be little, she is fierce” – William Shakespeare

I’ve already shared some of these quotes and they are in my journal for gentle reminders when I need them.

Kindness goes a long way…compliment others, practice less judgement. We are all struggling with the same insecurities, be it too little or too much. No struggle is harder than another when it comes to our self image.

#100 Days of Gratitude

I recently came across several Instagram posts tagging #100happydays. After checking it out, I almost jumped on the bandwagon as the idea is pretty neat. In it’s simplest form, it is encouraging people to see the happiness in their every day life, a concept that I love.

With that, my mind starting going (as it so often does!), and I thought I’d put a twist on the challenge. What about #100daysofgratitude? People could tag pictures of people, objects or anything that can be captured in a picture and use the tag, #100daysofgratitude. If you know me or follow my blog, you know how important my gratitude practice is everyday and how this simple practice has contributed to many positive changes in my life.

So, if your interested, join me in the challenge by posting a picture everyday of something/someone you are grateful for, tag it with #100daysofgratitude, and follow me on Instagram at Yoga.Healing.Life to check out my daily posts!

P.s. Keep a look out for a new article of mine being published on Tinybuddha.com

Namaste ❤

Yoga/Journaling – …Rising Every Time We Fall

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Good morning!
Crow pose got me this morning!
I would get one leg up and then fall. By the end of my practice, I was able to get one leg up and hold it for a few seconds. I’m happy with that today! I’m ok with the fact that every time I fell, I got back up and tried again.

My yoga teacher once said these words that keep coming up every time I’m challenged on my mat…”usually the way we handle our challenges on the mat is the way we handle our challenges off the mat”. Those words kept repeating in my head as I pushed myself to hold crow with one leg for a few seconds. I did it. When we are challenged in life, often times we give up. It’s ok to fall, but getting back up and trying again is the part that matters the most.

I’ll leave you with a quote from Nelson Mandela for your journaling inspiration:

“The greatest glory in living
lies not in never falling,
but in rising every time we fall.” –
Nelson Mandela

Yoga/Journaling – Bridge of Love

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Good morning!
Today’s yoga practice was a treat for me! It was a relaxed practice focusing on twists and simple bridges to move the spine and open up the back. Being hunched over at a computer for most of the day, Monday through Friday, this felt great to gently move my spine in a different directions 🙂 On the emotional side, I felt a feeling of unraveling…twisting and releasing…the release from the twist was refreshing and calming for my mind and body.

Whatever your practice was today or will be, I hope your take some time after your practice to reflect on yourself, what came up, what didn’t come up, in your journal. Journaling is one of the best therapies, in my opinion 🙂

Today’s quote for inspiration comes from Martha Whitmore Hickman’s Healing After Loss, Daily Meditations for Working Through Grief. Great little pocket size book that I carry around in my purse.

“There is a land of the living and a land of the dead and the bridge is love…” – Thornton Wilder

Yoga/Journaling – Sphinx Pose

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Photo credits: Wikipedia

Good morning! Today was a continuation of yoga working on our core.

I truly resonated with the Sphinx Pose today during my practice. I always loved this pose and felt very safe here today.

Even more so, throughout my practice this morning, I realized that my breathe is more in place with the poses (my ultimate goal during my home yoga practice). And I’m clenching less down on my jaw, another habit that I have to consciously correct to avoid headaches after my practice. The teeth clenching I also relate heavily to stress/anxiety. Keeping this promise, sticking with the challenge, is proving to be an awesome benefit to my morning routine. My days are changing beginning early and it continues throughout my day. If you haven’t started the challenge yet, feel free to join me at anytime 🙂 My prior posts have the link for the challenge ❤

Today's quote for inspiration:

"Everything is possible to him who wills only what is true! Rest in Nature, study, know, then dare; dare to will, dare to act and be silent!"
Éliphas Lévi

Yoga/Journaling – Challenges

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Good morning! My yoga practice this morning focused on strengthening abs. Although that was challenging by itself, my real challenge came because of my physical practice space. No yoga mat, tiny (really tiny) space on hard floor. In these moments, I have found it very easy to push off my practice until the next day when the conditions are more convenient for me.

Today, because of the promise I made to myself, I pushed through the challenges, on the hard floor, bending my knees when I had to, and finished my practice feeling more grateful than usual. I kept the promise to myself.

Here’s today’s quote for your journal inspiration:

“When we least expect it, life sets us a challenge to test our courage and willingness to change; at such a moment, there is no point in pretending that nothing has happened or in saying that we are not yet ready. The challenge will not wait. Life does not look back.” -Paulo Coelho

Just as a reminder, I am following along with Erin Motz 30 day yoga challenge :).
http://www.doyouyoga.com/challenge/

Yoga/Journaling – Chest & Heart Openers/Love Abides Where it is Welcome

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Welcome! In my yoga challenge this morning, we did chest, shoulder and heart openers. By the end of my practice my breathing slowed down and my chest felt less tight. That tighten of the chest, for me, is due to stress and anxiety. So this practice felt great this morning!

If you’re following along, journal on how you felt this morning. What came up or didn’t? If you had your own practice, what did you struggle with and what came easier to you today. What thoughts came up during your practice?

The journal inspiration today is relating to opening our hearts, welcoming love in…

“Love manifests where there is an empty vessel.
Love abides where it is welcome.”
– Bhakti Sutras, Verse 53

MY LIMITATIONS WILL NEVER STOP ME FROM TEACHING YOGA

I read this little post awhile ago and go back to it often when I’m feeling frustrated with my yoga practice; seeing others bending backwards; full wheelin’ it or even taking a slight back bend from tadasana.

“YOGA IS NOT about being bendy…
It’s about showing up to your mat consistently not knowing what is going to happen and being ok with that. It’s about rehabilitating yourself and not believing the “ex-perts” when they say you are too injured or too old. It’s about believing that you can do anything even if its the most scariest impossible thing you could ever dream of. It’s about uncovering who you really are. It’s about being kind to yourself so that you can then be kind to others. Yoga is about discovering that most of the crazy thoughts in your head are not true. It’s about being healthy without pushing yourself to the limit. It’s about slowing down to get strong. It’s about breathing and moving and smiling on the inside. It’s the hardest thing I have ever done, but also the best.” – Unknown

I suffered an injury years ago which caused spinal cord damage in my neck. A year after the injury, I no longer felt the constant pain and thought I was ok. Little did I know that I would suffer the effects of this injury for the rest of my life. This injury not only affects my neck but my lower back as well. This was very frustrating when I started my teacher training; I began to push myself more than I usually did thinking that it would make me a better yogi. After having a discussion with some of the people in my training about their advances and improvements, I was reminded why I decided to embark on the journey of teacher training. It sure wasn’t to do a backbend!! I ultimately wanted to share my knowledge of what yoga has done for me; how it has helped me with my life by relieving anxiety, stress, insomnia, etc; it wasn’t to teach people how to do a backbend.

Yoga gave me a break; it gave my mind a break – a break from the outside world to focus on my mind and my body. A bonus, of course, was the strength I was building in my body, specifically in my neck and back. Once I took my ego out of trying to push myself to move my yoga practice forward (this took quite some time), I am now comfortable with where I am, the progress I have made and will continue to make in my practice.

After realizing my limitations, my first reaction was a little bit of fear. How am I going to teach class of yogis if I can’t do the poses? I was reminded once again… “It’s about believing that you can do anything even if its the most scariest impossible thing you could ever dream of.” I can do anything I want to do, even if I can’t bend myself into a full wheel or take slight back bend! Our voices are much more powerful than what our bodies can or cannot do. My goal is to create a space for students to come and de-stress. No judgments, no levels, no requirements (except for an open mind and open heart to receive).

Don’t fear your limitations…if you really want to do something positive for yourself and others…remember that it may be the hardest thing you ever do in your life, but it will be the best!!

Where Do We Find Happiness?

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An excerpt from Eckhart Tolle’s book The Power of Now. My yoga teacher read this during savasana one night and I thought it was a truly profound story. Enjoy…

“A beggar had been sitting by the side of a road for over thirty years. One day a stranger walked by. “Spare some change?” mumbled the beggar, mechanically holding out his old baseball cap. “I have nothing to give you,” said the stranger. Then he asked: “What’s that you are sitting on?” “Nothing,” replied the beggar. “Just an old box. I have been sitting on it for as long as I can remember.” “Ever looked inside?” asked the stranger. “No,” said the beggar. “What’s the point? There’s nothing in there.” “Have a look inside,” insisted the stranger. The beggar managed to pry open the lid. With astonishment, disbelief, and elation, he saw that the box was filled with gold.

I am that stranger who has nothing to give you and who is telling you to look inside. Not inside any box, as in the parable, but somewhere even closer: inside yourself.

“But I am not a beggar,” I can hear you say.

Those who have not found their true wealth, which is the radiant joy of Being and the deep, unshakable peace that comes with it, are beggars, even if they have great material wealth. They are looking outside for scraps of pleasure or fulfillment, for validation, security, or love, while they have a treasure within that not only includes all those things but is infinitely greater than anything the world can offer” – Eckhart Tolle

So let’s start looking inside ourselves more often…our happiness and joy will be found inside our hearts not by a new car or a new dress. Our beauty is within us…we have all that we need right at this moment ❤

Let’s Add Some Self Love Into Our Goals

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Written by Kelly Higgins

“I’m too fat”
“I’m too skinny”
“I’m not pretty enough”
“I’m not fit enough”
“I want muscles here”
“I want my butt to look like hers”

Sound familiar? You are not alone; in fact, Brown University’s Health Education website did a study on college students which reported “74.4% of the normal-weight women stated that they thought about their weight or appearance “all the time” or “frequently.” But the women weren’t alone; the study also found that 46% of the normal-weight men surveyed responded the same way.”

How often do you think about your weight/appearance throughout your day? I know for myself, I think about my weight and reaching my goals countless times throughout my day. I wake up thinking that I didn’t eat enough calories yesterday and promise myself I will eat more today. At night I go to bed disappointed that I didn’t eat enough calories as I promised myself I would and the cycle continues. (I’m actually one of the small percentages of woman that are struggling with weight gain. To those that are living with my battle, you know exactly how hard this is).

We spend way too much time focusing on what is wrong with our bodies and not enough time focusing on how beautiful we really are. You are so much more amazingly beautiful, sexy and hot than you give yourself credit for!!

Here are few tips that I can offer to help bring some self love into your lives:

Add positive self love into your goals!

I keep a record in my journal of reaching my ideal weight in order to track my progress. When I don’t make any progress or fall back a step, I become so frustrated with myself almost to the point where I want to give up. So, I decided to add an extra highly attainable goal to my daily routine; some self love!

Along with your goal to reach your ideal weight, maintaining the right calories and your exercise schedule, add an extra bonus in there to tell yourself “I am beautiful” EVERY time you look in the mirror throughout the day. Write it down right next your goal for your day, week or month. This daily positive affirmation will help you begin to see how beautiful you are right now!

Say “thank you” and truly appreciate compliments you receive!

When your loved ones give you a compliment, listen to them and appreciate it. They love you and are telling you the truth. I woke up this morning feeling so aggravated with that number on the scale. As I was getting dressed for work my boyfriend looked at me and said, “I think you are beautiful just the way you are”. My response was “Thank you, but I would be happier if I just could put on 10 or 15 more pounds”. I totally disregarded his genuine statement and blew it off because I was too concerned about the thoughts in my head. Later in the morning, I really thought about what he said and sent him a text message thanking him for telling me I was beautiful that morning and always. I also added in a hot compliment about him!!

When a loved one gives you a compliment, stop for a moment, and really think about it. This person is being genuine and coming from their heart when they say things to you. They most likely have heard about your struggles and have seen the progress you have been making with your goals. Appreciate and listen to their compliments, smile, say thank you and realize that others are noticing the beauty YOU are creating!

Reward yourself with some pampering!

You’ve reached your goal for the week of working out 4 times at the gym or at the yoga studio (I’m a yoga nut so at least 15 minutes a day of yoga is my goal!), go reward yourself. You totally deserve it. Go get a massage, a mani/pedi, or a facial. Maybe a nice long relaxing bath with soothing oils and a good book…(yummy). For the men out there, treat yourself to game of golf or do something that you enjoy to relax!

If you know a yummy relaxing reward is all yours at the end of the week or month, pushing yourself to that goal will be so much more attainable!

Loving yourself is sometimes harder than the actually goal of reaching your ideal weight or seeing results of the muscles you want. Throughout your day, every time a negative thought of your body comes into your mind, remind yourself how beautiful you are just the way you are right now; the shedding or gaining of those pounds will come in time!