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Be with yourself in stillness

You don’t have to meditate, but it helps.

The journey to stillness is different for all of us. I’m willing to bet that you can recall at least one time when your mind was quiet, even for a few moments, and you felt some peace and ease.

It’s true, stillness does happen spontaneously sometimes. What a relief to be unburdened from all the mind’s chatter, even if only momentarily. Maybe the stillness comes while you are being creative or making something. Maybe it’s while you are out in nature, entranced by the wonder of it all. It can happen while swimming, or dancing, or running, or listening to particular music. It can happen when connecting with someone dear to us.

These tastes of stillness let us know that a state of profound quietude is possible. It just takes some training of both mind and body to figure out how to get there on purpose. And once you are there, all there is to do is give yourself your undivided attention, with curiosity and interest, in a kind and affectionate way.

Both mindfulness and self-compassion training, as well as other forms of contemplative practice, provide a roadmap to stillness as outlined by what has worked for others in the past. It all starts with a willingness and the intention to be fully with yourself to see what’s there and what unfolds without escaping and without judging.

It’s all about learning to stay.

Because you, just like every other living being, are worthy of love and attention, especially your own.

Seven Ways Yoga Helps Us Trust the Body and Eat with Ease

A rash of new research has yet to explain why and how yoga and other mind-body therapies appear to be effective in treating and preventing eating and body image concerns. Much of the evidence remains anecdotal and the actual benefits are unclear. The research indeed suggests that yoga practice is helpful, but the studies have conflicting results and the effects are not as great as expected.

What’s increasingly clear is that yoga enhances embodiment and mindfulness, two qualities that we do know are helpful in preventing and treating these issues. To state it broadly, both embodiment and mindfulness require present-focused awareness and deliberate attention to sensations, thoughts, and feelings in order to establish a mind-body connection. When we are not fully inhabiting our bodies, it can be tricky to identify and manage emotions, impulses, and thoughts leaving us at their mercy. Continue Reading →