This famous quote elicits an automatic response from all of us to hit the like button. Feelings of love and joy are our natural state. It is where we thrive. This idea of moving with love and joy is quite romantic. But this takes consistent practice. Because life is never static; it is always evolving from one phase to the next, presenting us with new challenges where feelings of fear, worry and doubt naturally begin to creep in. These feelings hold us back. They steal our joy and keep us from living true to our authentic self. So this, my friends, is worth putting into practice! And there is no better platform for doing this work than yoga.
Yoga cultivates attunement between the body, mind and spirit. The more aware we become of our bodies, the greater opportunity we have to advance the spirit.
- Cultivate awareness. When we are living from a place of fear, our bodies become tense. This can show up as a clinched jaw, tightness in the shoulders and neck, a headache, backache, digestive upset… Sometimes these things become so common that we begin to ignore them or think of them as just a nuisance that we live with because accept living a stressed out life. The first step to moving with love is to simply become aware when the body is tense. Stop yourself dead in your tracks and take notice.
- Be present. As you observe tension, begin to reflect on how you are feeling. Take a deep breath as you come into the present moment. Simply feel the feeling and label it. (ie. “Fear arises.” “I am afraid of the outcome if…”) As you sit with present moment mindfulness of your feeling, continue to breath slowly and deeply. Simply be with the feeling and eventually notice the feeling dissolve.
- Replace and transcend. Now begin to reflect on a feeling of love or joy and allow it to replace the feeling of fear. (ie. “I am grateful for this situation because it allows me to…” “I have joy and appreciation for…”) Be present with this feeling. On the exhale breath, allow it to relax the body and ease the mind of anxiety. If any notions of fear or doubt try to creep their way in, simply replace the thought and hold space for feelings of love and joy. Breathe into it, and thank yourself for having the insight, courage and discipline to create a more peaceful life.
With consistent practice, these steps will become so natural that you won’t even recognize you are doing it. And before you know it, you will be moving the way love makes you move, the way joy makes you move. Everyday. So instead of just hitting the like button, get out there and practice! #yogaeverydamnday
Sarah Balmer, BS, Certified Holistic Health Coach, CPT
Certified Yoga I.S.® RYT-200
Instructor, Yoga Integrated Science™ Wellness Center