Self Love

photo-2This Valentine’s Day weekend, I feel compelled to write about self love. I asked my bootcampers before one of our onsite classes this past week to share with a partner what they LOVE about themselves while we warmed up for class. While the question in itself felt a little bit cheesy, and the tone in my voice hinted lighthearted-ness, and most shared smiles, and I heard at least one person let out a brief, “ha!”, it’s a serious question of self-reflection that I think everyone should take the time to ask themselves. Given I brought it up on the spot and almost instantly everyone was expected to come up with something, not having the time to really think about it. But I think it’s telling in itself what a person, off the top of their head, comes up with. I heard someone say they love that they’ve lost 5 pounds so far through participating in our bootcamp program session (which is awesome in a results-oriented way). Someone else said they love their legs. I later learned that someone, who I think has so much to love about themselves, couldn’t really think of much to share in that moment. I also received feedback of how profound of a question it was that it lingered in the days to follow, as this person took the time to really consider her answers to herself long after that night’s class had ended.

I challenge YOU, this Valentine’s Day weekend, to think about what YOU love about yourself. Do you love yourself? Regardless of the people you have in your life, whether you’re single, in a relationship, married, or it’s a complicated situation (remember when, “It’s complicated”, was a drop-down menu option on Facebook to relay your current relationship status?!), reflect upon YOU today as well as others. Not in a narcissistic way, but in a SELF LOVE type of way, for your emotional health.

Now, I love my husband, I love my family, I love my close friends, I love my fitness peeps, I love my life right now. What do I love about myself? I love my eyes! I love that I naturally see the world through rose-colored glasses (not that it’s always in my best interest or viewed as the “smartest” way to approach life’s situations, but I’m self-aware of my tendency and consider alternatives when appropriate). I love that I have developed the self-motivation to actively work towards and achieve my own personal health/fitness/wellness goals, and that I have such an interest and drive to pursue a happy and active lifestyle. I love that I am so passionate about what I do and am humbled by the opportunty to touch so many through my health/fitness/wellness endeavors; to educate, support, and give others the tools to actively work towards and achieve their own goals (it is one of the most rewarding feelings I’ve ever experienced and it drives me to constantly want to learn and do/offer more). I love that I am open-minded and understanding. I love that I care so much. I love that I am easy-going and light-hearted. I love that I choose to seek experiences in life over material things. I love that I am a good listener. I love that I feel compelled to do the right thing. I love my body, that I’ve worked for and consistently make efforts to maintain and enhance, and that I am mindful of my self-talk to turn potentially negative thoughts into self-accepting, positive ones in attempts to accept even the parts of me that I don’t naturally love. I love that I love the color purple and eating sushi and that I’m Greek. I love how far I’ve come to be who I am today, and that I look forward to the journey of how I will continue to evolve throughout my lifetime.

If qualities or aspects of who you are don’t readily come to mind when pondering this question initially, I encourage you to reflect upon it and truly consider at least 3 things you love about yourself, and write them down. I believe self-awareness starts you on the path to self-love. Pursuing a happy and healthy lifestyle isn’t just about physical health, but also mental, emotional, spiritual (for some), etc.

Feel free to share something you love about yourself in the comments section below!

Wishing you a wonderful, reflective moment this Valentine’s Day weekend as you love and appreciate YOURSELF as well as others in your lives. <3