How Yoga Taught Me Self-Love

Hello, hello Cultivator friends!

Super excited today to introduce you to Cultivate’s newest guest blogger, Teresa Eigel from Peace, Love, Whole Food.

Teresa and I connected on Instagram about a year ago when we realized: 1) we both lived in the Columbus, OH area; 2) both harbor a passionate love for whole foods (not the grocery store, but the actual foods themselves…although, let’s be real…probably the grocery store as well); and 3) both were investing a lot of free time into the art of yoga.
Overall, the more we chatted, the more I realized our similarities went beyond that of wellness hobbies alone, and the more I fell in love with her blog, Peace, Love, Whole Foods.
If you’re not familiar, Peace, Love, Whole Food is a food, nutrition, & healthy living blog embracing plant-centric whole foods and living. Through her blogging, Teresa shares how you may begin improving your health through delicious & simple recipes, as well as other lifestyle tips.
I encourage you to check it out and read more about her personal story moving from a place of insecurity and unhappiness with her body, to one of confidence and love.
Here’s a little quote from her “About Me” page:

“After years of physical abuse to my body [via dieting cycles], I got to a point where I view food as a nourishing gift, rather than an enemy, and found therapy in running, yoga, cycling, and other physical activities.
I don’t push myself anymore. If I can’t comfortably talk while exercising, I slow down. It has become my time to myself…breathing in fresh air and letting my thoughts run wild into all the nooks and crannies of my brain.”

Talk about inspiring. …and you haven’t even read her post about yoga yet (keep scrolling).
I asked Teresa to share a little about her personal journey with yoga today because hearing it myself served as a major catalyst to my own journey with the art.
Connecting with Teresa allowed me to finally begin understanding the meditation side of yoga―viewing it as a space where I could let go of all thoughts, stressors, worries, to-do lists, insecurities, etc, and instead focus upon my inner and outer strength. Upon doing so, my entire practice (and life) changed tremendously (and quickly!!)
So without any further ado, here is Teresa sharing her approach to exercise, yoga, self-confidence, and more 🙂

XO, Sarah

 


By: Teresa Eigel

When I began practicing yoga for a purely physical practice, I never imagined it would change my life – my view on the world and on myself – so drastically.

I jumped into it as a means of stretching to complement my running. I quickly was awakened to the emotional and mental components of the practice.
The practice of yoga brings us inside the body and mind to help us understand our worth outside our physical body. It provides us with the realization, which can be scary at first, we do not control a lot of what our body does – yawning, sneezing, smiling, the chemistry of the GI tract, the genetics we inherit.
But with that realization, yoga helps us figure out how to be okay with it- To let go of control and accept the fluctuations of the physical and mental body. To be okay with the 5 pounds of water weight somehow gained within the last few days and trust your body knows what it’s doing.
Yoga also helped me investigate my “criteria for future happiness”. The concept of “I’ll be happy when…” Whatever that statement might be.

“I’ll be happy when I fit into a size 2 pant”

“I’ll be happy when my butt isn’t so big”

“I’ll be happy when my hair grows out”

…these were all real “criteria” that have gone through my head throughout the years. I so quickly recognize when I hear these things now and it makes me want to embrace the person in an intense hug and pour in my feelings of accepting themselves just the way we are.

We are perfect just the way we are, in this very moment.

Whatever your “criteria for future happiness” may be, ask yourself Why? Are you sure? How do you really know you’ll be happy if that criteria is fulfilled? What will it take to get there?
Rewrite your criteria for what will make you happy now – today, in this very moment.
Why wait to be happy when we can be happy now? 🙂

Recognize and acknowledge everyone has their own problems. Even that girl who wears a size 2, with a small butt, and luscious long hair…

The grass isn’t always greener on someone else’s lawn. Maybe it’s your perception, maybe it’s fake. Maybe it’s turf 😉
Feed your spirit today. Accept and love what is. You are right where you need to be.

xoxo-

Teresa

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