A friend posted recently an eloquent article about the though time many people experience at the moment, how it can affect person’s mentality and may even lead to a suicide.
The part in that post where mindfulness about what we say and how we say it was mentioned, reminded me again how important, even vital self love, self care are especially now. Those powerful, but somehow not-so familiar practices made me think with a massive gratitude about my first spiritual and yoga teacher, the very special and wholesomely amazing Heather Joel. Since 2016 she has taught me quite a few things about myself, word around me and beyond but one thing will always stand out – her very own “Heather-ism” about which she kindly agree to share some more here. Enjoy, read, adopt and take an action! Life is too precious and is best to be lived fully, consciously, lovingly, completely. Reach out if you ever doubt about it, I am here for you.
With love and much appreciation,
By Heather Joel
BYOBF… BE YOUR OWN BEST FRIEND
“She loved so many hearts, she forgot about her own…”
As a yoga teacher, I am always seeking ways to enhance this experience we call ‘life’. Often, many of these realisations come to me in the wee hours – that magical time around four am, where it is said the soul is most open to new learnings.
One of my favourite themes, which I call ‘BYOBF’, came to me in just this manner. It was almost as if it had been directed into my consciousness from the Angels. A whispering, like a voice in my ear … ‘BYOBF’.
As I contemplated this, things began to fall into place… when you learn to be your own best friend you become kinder, more loving, accepting and patient with yourself. You begin to love yourself just as you are. No matter what.
Ah, but this is easier said than done.
Learning to be your own best friend can be a lifetime’s work. In fact, I believe learning to love yourself is the primary lesson most of us will face in this lifetime.
Loving yourself is not selfish, it’s smart. Although it may be easier to love others than to truly love yourself, how can you give the best of yourself when you’re running on empty?
So, fill up your own cup first. Then once your own Loving Cup is full, you’ll have enough to pour your friends and loved ones a drink.
So how to BYOBF?
- Become Aware of Your Self-talk. You may be surprised to discover that much of your self-talk is negative or critical – you would probably be unlikely to speak to your worst enemies the way you may speak (repeatedly) to yourself.
- CYT: Catch Your Thoughts, Challenge Your Thoughts, Change Your Thoughts.
I like to stick Post-it notes throughout my home as little reminders to ‘CYT’ … Catch, Challenge and Change my thinking. Ask yourself ‘Does this thought serve me?’ If the answer is ‘no’, simply replace it with one which does.
- Fill Up Your Loving Cup. Make a habit of inviting what I call ‘Magic Moments’ in to your life. What do you love to do? What brings you joy? It may be the simplest of things like a walk in the fresh air, soaking up the sunshine, listening to the birds, really noticing the aroma and taste of that morning coffee, taking some slow, deep, mindful breaths, getting lost in a great book or treating yourself to something decadent or luxurious. Doing what you love is truly one of the simplest ways of loving yourself.
- Recognize Attachment vs. Desire. Attachment comes from the ego, so become aware of those ‘desires’ which are actually ‘attachments’. A simple way to check this is to question how much power something holds over you. Is it something you enjoy, but could quite happily do without… or does it have a pull on you, something you feel you need? If it is the latter, it’s almost definitely an attachment and you would do well to focus on freeing yourself from this until it no longer has power over you.
By being mindful of the importance of ‘BYOBF’ and working these simple steps into your life, you will not only become a happier and healthier person, but will naturally become kinder, more compassionate, patient and loving to your friends, family and loved ones. And that’s a win all-round.
You can ‘BYOBF’ by joining Heather’s Facebook Group ‘Yoga with Heather’
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