And I don’t mean the appearance of it. You’re body was made to be loved, and I don’t mean by someone else. I mean by YOU. What does loving your body look like? It means eliminating all foods, thoughts, and actions that no longer serve you. It means gaining full body awareness through meditation, being one with the body. Loving your body means giving yourself permission to train it to reach its full potential. We were given this human form as a home. Is it enjoyable to live in a home with piles of clothes in every corner, filthy pipes and sinks, and crumbs all over the floor? Know that you have the capacity to clear the house for a stable, enjoyable existence full of balance and clarity.
So how does one begin to implement this type of love for the temple?
Feed it what it truly wants
Pay attention to what you eat. Consider eating to live instead of living to eat. Don’t worry about calories. Eat foods that don’t contain labels instead. Eat foods that are charged with enzymes, antioxidants, and natural vitamins and minerals.
Move the body in the ways it wants to move
Go running. Go lifting. Go climbing. Go hiking. Do YOGA.
Yoga is becoming a preferred mode of physical activity. It took me 2 years of practice to understand that asanas (postures) aren’t to be treated as destination based exercise (as in with the goal of adding weight in lifting, or being the fastest in a track meet). I’ve come to realize that each individual posture has specific benefits for our wellness.
The goal of performing postures isn’t to go deeper and deeper into them, though that will happen over time. The goal is merely to reap the benefits of finding an edge, and resting there calmly, yet with alertness and a steady breath.
One who practices mind-body-awareness knows about the mind-body connection, specifically the unconscious mind-body connection. There can be unexplained unease within the body due to an ailment in the mind that isn’t easily accessible or noticed. In psychology, we hear about psychosomatic symptoms (Psychology Today). People go to doctors with physical unease but end up with a therapist.
A diverse yoga practice is known to unwind symptoms within the body, thus unwinding symptoms within the hidden mind.
Rewire the mind
Implementing these lifestyle changes will begin to eliminate stress from the body and mind, as will a steady meditation practice. A meditation practice will help to ground you in the present moment. Anxiety happens when we consider and reconsider the future and strive to have complete control over it. Depression can occur when living and longing for past moments exceed your desire to remain present. The mind creates illusions about a time that actually isn’t much better than the present moment.
This isn’t the hardest part believe it or not, but it’s 50% of the battle. Once you decide to become your greatest version, for example, the battle is 50% complete. The other 50% will be long and brutal, but worth it.