Self-Love (in 9 easy -?- steps)

“Your yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection. ”  – Buddha

I have finally taken a serious decision of practicing self-love consistently and sincerely.  It’s something I admit I’ve had issues with for a long time and, lately, I came to realize it was giving way to things I didn’t want for myself and that my own relationship to myself would set the tone for every other relationship I’d have.

The practice of self-love, I find, is often discouraged, in today’s society, easily seen as selfishness or egocentricity, but why not value the individual instead of sacrificing it to the benefit (and that’s arguable) of the herd?

In general, I believe that issues and even diseases are often rooted in some level in our own self-love so why not make self-love a priority, the solid basis for “the rest”.

You are the only you that exists.  That alone should be worth your best shot at appreciating who you are.

Here are 9 things I’ve narrowed it down to in order to give that underrated ego a little boost.

  1.  Be kind, because it’s good energy and it doesn’t cost you a damn thing.
  2. Stand up straight and smile.  It changes your energy and how others react to you.
  3. Practice self-grooming.  Be well groomed and dress in a way that makes you feel good.
  4. Prepare your day in advance, everyday, so you have less you need to think about.  Stay organized and focused.  Know what you will wear and eat tomorrow.
  5. Be grateful and practice awareness of positive thoughts:  pay special attention to negative self-talk and make it a habit to shift it to exactly the opposite.
  6. Study, read and learn something new each day.  Practice what you have learned. Knowledge and developing your skills build confidence.
  7. Trial and errors…  are your friends in disguise.  Don’t be afraid to go out there, give it your best attempt and fail (even miserably).  Chances are you’ll end up learning even better from this and maybe even meet guides along the way.
  8. Exercise.  Endorphines.  We love endorphines.  Some days, I’ll admit, I don’t have the time or energy (or motivation) to do it.  So I go for a 10 minute walk if that’s all I can do.
  9. Eat as healthy as you possibly can.  As cliche as it is, our body is such an amazing machine, and you are in control of the fuel you’re giving it.  Eat well and your body will thank you for it.

 

That’s pretty much my mantra of the moment.  I still have a lot of work to do to be a master at all 9 steps but hey, we’re getting there, a bit closer every day.

We talk a lot about making the world a better place and we will, each and everyone of us, starting with ourselves.

 Aramis xx

We were born to glory
It filled us up with love
Living out the story
Since lightening from above
Yes we can have it all
We can be merciful
Go dancing at the ball

But we’ve been talking lately
About just what we feel
Caught in earthly drama
Instead of walking free
But we can hold it all
Outside ourself dissolved
Yes we can hold it all again

The light goes on and on
Forever it has shone…
Forever you

– “The Glory” by Royal Wood (featuring Sarah Slean)

Motherhood

Fifteen years ago, today, I became a mom.  I kind of can’t remember not being a mother, as if there was no “before” or that “before” was irrelevant.  To try to describe the joy, fulfillment and endless love that tiny little human has filled me with is not something I can hope to achieve, for it is way larger than I am.

Although I would love to take credit for whatever I have done for him, how do you take credit for a life changing, heart exploding, soul altering blessing?  You don’t, you can’t.

Children come to us in mysterious ways and the Love they bring with them is not our own doing.  We can shower them with tenderness and try to guide them and make them little wings sturdy enough not to lose too many feathers and try to learn from those squishy little ones as much if not more than they learn from us, but ultimately, Love is all that came and all that will remain.  So give it your all, but keep in mind:  they are their own beings with their own path, dreams and ambitions.

on children

I thank the Universe on both knees for this gift.  Motherhood.  My son.  His health and happiness.

Aramis xx

 

When I first saw you, I already knew

There was something inside of you

Something i thought that I would never find

Angel of mine

I look at you looking at me

Now I know why they say the best things are free

Gonna love you boy you are so fine

Angel of mine

How you changed my world you’ll never know

I’m different now, you helped me grow

 

Our ever evolving selves

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I’m wearing:

Hair: Kohaku by ARGRACE  (in blacks)

Top: Georgina Mesh Yoga Tops by Blueberry (in pink)

Pants: Kaithleen’s Yoga Pants by Kaithleen’s Original Mesh (in purple)

 

My location:  Shambhala Sanctuary 

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We are similar but not the same.

The way you experience a yoga pose, a trauma, a song or a change over time is always going to be different than someone else.  This is because we all have unique neural structures and how your brain develops over time is also unique to you.  This is why neuroscience cannot prove so many things about the brain and our consciousness.

We are born with basic systems and reflexes to allow our survival. After that it’s all how you develop through experience.  Increasing your self-awareness and observing your thoughts, actions and patterns is really the height of our evolved emotional intelligence in the world today.

How we process, respond to, interact with and understand our experiences is what causes us to change, grow, evolve, or devolve.

You are not like a computer and you don’t have the luxury of switching off. You are an ORGANISM that must stay on to survive so your only choice (and it’s a privilege) is change.

Onward, upward and inwards.

Aramis xx

Frida, I’m in love.

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I’m wearing:

Eyebrows:  +QutWorld BodyArt+ Elegant Eyebrows (in black) by QTWORLD

Necklace: Lane Branch Necklace – Gold (W\Resize) by 7891

Earrings & Flower Crown:  Sacred (in red) by FINESSMITH

Hair:  Frida hair (in black) by Virtual Diva

Props:

Dress:  Kaithleen’s Linen Dress  (in cream) by Kaithleen’s Original Mesh

Bad Katz Scaredy Cat by Bad Katz

Monkey by Maddie May’s Home Decor & More

Background painted by Henri Julien Rousseau (“The Equatorial Jungle”)
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Passionate, tumultuous, feisty, colourful, courageous, seductive, tender, sensitive, introspective, independent…

Frida Kahlo is one my “favorite people” because she has redefined so many things:  feminism, beauty ideals (sporting a unibrow and a mustache, she accentuated them with a black pencil), cultural taboos and all kinds of limitations, established or imposed (that she completely ignored, and, in fact, used as a platform to exacerbate her freedom as an individual and an artist).

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The terrible road accident she suffered when she was 18, in which she was impaled by a handrail, leaving her body ravaged, seems like a cruel, ironic metaphor of her identity:  such a ferociously free woman was constricted and compressed by the corset she had to wear daily, and, following that horrendous life altering event, she spilled her heart and guts into her brutally honest art.

She is someone who is perfectly aware of who she is and faces the world as a whole, it seems.  In all of her self-portraits (“I paint myself because I am often alone and I am the subject I know best.”), she always looks at you, her gaze confident and hauntingly uncompromising.

It could be easy to fall into the trap of mistaking Frida for an insensitive, hard, tough woman.  But that would be ignoring the unfaltering passion with which she loved her Diego.  After their divorce, she painted “The Two Fridas” – my personal favorite painting of hers – in which one Frida (the Frida Diego loves, so she has a whole heart) can be seen holding a tiny portrait of Diego and the other Frida (the Frida Diego no longer loves) is trying to stop the flow of blood from an open vein of her broken heart, unsuccessfully:  her heart is bleeding everywhere.  Better to have loved and lost.

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To Frida, a woman in all of her complexities, strengths and weaknesses.

 

                                                     Aramis  xx

 

And the night sky blooms with fire
(Y la noche que se encendia)
And the burning bed floats higher
(Y la cama que lleva)
And she’s free to fly
(A volar)

And all of the dark days
Painted in dark grey hues
They fade with the dream of you
Wrapped in red velvet
Dancing the night away
I burn

Midnight blue
Spread those wings
Fly free with the swallows
Fly
One with the wind

-“Burn It Blue” by Caetono Valeso & Lila Dawn (from the “Frida” soundtrack)