By: Vivian Garcia-Tunon
A month ago, I committed myself to thirty days of self-love. What this entailed was thirty days of yoga, thirty days of meditation, thirty days of selfies and video coaching, a 7-day cleanse and thirty days of no dating apps. And while this list might seem like quite a hodgepodge of items to agree to, in my mind, it all made sense.
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I wanted to fall in love with new aspects of me. Yes, I had moments where I had to accept I wasn’t comfortable with my body, thoughts, priorities and self-image. But this month helped me see myself in new ways.
I realized the importance of consistency. Each morning I chose myself. I had to put me first to plan what I had committed to and it paid off. I noticed the more I did yoga the more I could push myself professionally to go beyond my “self imposed” limits. When I did yoga in the morning, I felt like I could go out and achieve anything I wanted that day. Obstacles seemed nonexistent. I noticed the more meditation I did, the easier it was to see and accept myself as a priority. Very early into my meditation practice I started waking up thinking about myself vs. putting others first.
I was no longer stressed about what I didn’t do for others and how to deal with other’s situations. I grew more compassionate for people as well. I saw myself being more loving and accepting of people in every situation. In particular, I noticed where stories I told myself were blocking me from being kind with the homeless. I often would overlook them out of fear of their reactions and wouldn’t offer them anything out of worry about what they would do with it. My giving shouldn’t be conditional and controlled. I can’t control what they do with it. I can only control my intentions behind what I do. I have never given away so much food and money to those in need and it feels great.
Cleansing Body and Soul
My goal for my cleanse was to clean out my system, and boy did I get even more out of it! I quickly saw and learned so much. I learned to focus on my experiences and what I want. The first few days I listened to others who told me to stay home and do nothing. They were wrong! I was bored stiff and miserable, constantly noticing my lack of options at home without food. I quickly learned that I get to choose my reality. I realized living without food is pretty easy. It helped me also realize the importance of food choices and listening to your body. I got to truly learn my appetite and hunger cues as well as understand my body. I was shocked how quickly I went from daily Venti Lattes to none at all. I didn’t need them as I had natural energy that would last much longer. It was amazing! And the added bonus? I lost 15 lbs!
Why did I do the selfie challenge and video coaching on top of all that? Because I hated looking at myself in pictures and video. I would analyze everything that looked wrong and needed improvement. Each day, I would get excited to see what looked different and what looked better. I took selfies coming out of the gym, in bed, wherever I felt like it. I discovered that if my inside was happy and content, then all of my outside would be as well.
Being off the dating apps was amazing, as it took the pressure off dating and constantly checking my phone. I stopped looking for men in just one place and focused on being happy where I was and with what I was doing. Ironically, I met even more people in person than I have over the last 5 years!
This morning, I woke up grumpy and frustrated. I’m not perfect! And as I’m at the end of the month, I need to ask myself what do I have to show for it and what’s next? Well, I have to practice what I preach and digest this amazing month, expressing gratitude before it all fades from my memory.
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Here is just some of what I’m grateful for:
- Learning to love the journey
- Realizing everyday is a choice in the unknown and your outlook affects the outcome
- The joy I had in the unknown
- The joy I had in seeing my body shift, shrink and tone
- The fun in meeting new people in unexpected places
- The comfort I had with all my emotions
- Breaking down my self imposed barriers
- Getting over my stories and reaching out to people from a place of humility
- A month staycation
- The amount of support I received
- My continued momentum and evolution
- My commitment and follow through to myself
- The hate in myself that I turned to love
- The peace in me
- The new connections I made
- The openness I have created towards others
- The increased compassion love and curiosity I have for others
- Embracing and confronting my fears
- Changing my relationship with food
- The progress I make on my daily and my business
Have you ever done a month of self-love? I would love to hear all about it.
Vivian Garcia-Tunon is a Business & Executive Coach, and founded VGT Consulting Group to help executives and entrepreneurs achieve their professional goals.
Originally published at www.ellevatenetwork.com.