(Dancer’s Pose– a balance pose that requires focus, flexibility and expansion. This a heart opener pose. Definitely one of the prettiest poses, it may seem easy but it requires intense concentration).
I feel like a bit of a slacker, realizing that my last entry was almost 3 months ago. I promise that was not my intension. I had ideas flowing through my head all the time, I kept telling myself that I will find the time to write these down. One after the other I kept pushing it, delaying it, and I became too busy in my everyday routine with work that I never got a chance to find alone time to share my stories. I’m sorry I have been neglecting this journal. For those of you that know me know that my job is extremely time consuming, working about 55 hours a week leaves you very little time to do other things. However, please be proud of me that I have been struggling but squeezing time for my yoga practice. As a matter of fact, I went to the studio 3 times this week! I also make that happen because I don’t really have a social life and rarely go out, haha. You take some, you lose some. It’s all about priorities right? I’m not complaining, work can be tough but it is never boring. No two days are the same, there is always something that makes the day unbelievable. I work for Enterprise but who knew renting cars could be so stressful at times. If only I can start blogging on the stories based on my customers and the craziest events that happened. I’ll leave that for next time. What I really want to touch base on today is self investment.
Self investment is pretty much investing in creating a better you, straight forward, not too complicated. Ironically it is quite a challenge for a majority of people, including myself. Now why is that? Why is it so hard for us to spend the time and effort on ourselves, instead we spend it on all outside materials. To simplify this ideology, we can use an everyday example such as working verses exercising.
Why do we wake up every morning as early as the job entails and stay late even until we are done with all our tasks. Easy enough: we get paid to perform our duties. We signed up for it. Monetary rewards (aka a necessity in order to survive in the world). Cannot get any more basic than that.
On the other hand, why is it so hard for us to motivate our minds to drag our bodies to the gym after work or on our day off? The common answer: we are too tired from a long day of work. It’s my day off I just want to relax and not have to do anything. Both valid and true.
What I’m trying to get at is why we can suck it up and even force ourselves to go to work (even when we are sick) but cannot find the strength to help maintain our health by exercising (since doctors are always telling us to exercise more)? Why are our minds playing games with us making it harder for us to do the right thing instead of a so-called mandatory task? Some may say, well there are bad concequences for not showing up to work. Since we all have a boss or superivor, we are all consciously aware of that possibility. But going to the gym or for a run, I am my own boss, I make the rules, no one can punish me…..EXCEPT your own body…
My own body can punish me?
Your body will react to how you treat yourself. If you are overwhelmed with work, stress can take a toll and you might get sick. If you are binge eating, your stomach might be in pain. If you eat unhealthy foods, your body might not be absorbing enough nutrients, leaving you weak and tired. If you are used to eat whatever you wanted when you were young, you might find that your body cannot digest it properly or that the enzymes are not as active.
A very personal story of mine that I would like to share with all of you. About 3 years ago I developed rashes throughout my body that was considered Roseola (took a long time to figure it out). That’s what the doctor thought it was but I have my doubts because the symptoms and severity did not match up to what I researched online. In fact I was not even contagious nor did I have fevers. It’s also very common for babies, but not as many cases for adults. Granted it was treatable and was just a virus, so that was a relief. But, I had these tiny rashes that slowly creeped all over my body from my neck down to bits and pieces onto my limbs. What made matters worse was it took months, maybe 2 or 3 months for it to go away. Fortunately, and I am extremely grateful that it did not spread to my face or hands. I did not have any symptoms, I did not feel sick, everything was external. It was not a pretty sight and it definitely shot down my self esteem and made me self conscience of my body. Thank goodness it was wintertime so I was always bundled up.
It was the external appearance that brought awareness to my body that something in not going right internally. The cause of the rash is unknown to me but one thing I’m certain of is that it had to do with stress. Even the doctor said that. Although it’s easily spread, similar to chicken pox, my immune system should have been strong enough to fight off a virus. This was a common rash for infants. Due to high levels of stress (all factors of my life) my body weakened, my immune system failed me.
It was a scary time for me because of the unknown. I definitely paid more attention to my body after that. I made sure I was constantly eating healthy (you can have cheat days, not asking you guys to become vegetarian or vegan) and trying myself to bring myself to the gym to get the proper exercise my body craved.
In the last two years in Florida, I have embraced yoga into my lifestyle and I couldn’t be happier. I made it a priority because I know that during my practice I am present in the moment with my body, listening and reacting to its needs and desires. Yoga helps me relieve my back and shoulder pain, it increases my flexibility, it trains my mind to focus, and it teaches me to bring awareness to the present moment.
Only until something drastic happens to our health or body do we get a wake up call that your body is your temple and it needs attention, love, and care. Without your health, you cannot work or play. You won’t be able to do anything you love or want.
Eat healthy because you want to feed body with the best ingredients. Yes, eating healthy can take some effort and might be a little costly but we are worth it. Just as super cars need premium gas, we need the best foods. We are investing in our own bodies.
Exercise often because you need all the energy you can get to do what you love. Not to mention those extra lifts and squats will give you that extra cut just where you need it. Your partners will definitely notice the difference even if you think its subtle.
Embrace and listen to your body. Rest when you are tired. Sleep because you are sleep deprived. That extra drink really won’t make a difference in the long run. You won’t lose a friend because you couldn’t make it to a party. Prioritize your needs. Do what makes you happy.
Spend time and effort taking care of yourself, be conscience of the fuel you are feeding for your speed. Invest in your health. It matters.
Love yourself, love your body.