With Valentine's Day right around the corner, it seems like we have one holiday after another. This particular holiday is unique, as it prompts us to spend one entire day doing something we should be doing 365 days a year: showing appreciation for the ones we love. Many people thrive on Valentine's Day, and feel that it's a necessary reminder to show someone you care. Others believe that Feb. 14 represents a mockery of love, in which giving and/or receiving gifts is all it takes to maintain a healthy relationship. (Platonic or otherwise.)
As with anything else, perception is reality when it comes to V-Day. Where ever you fall on the spectrum, there is one thing we all have in common, which is the fact that we neglect to give love to the one person in our life that needs it the most: ourselves. On a subconscious level, we all comprehend the airplane analogy, right? You know the one: Always put on your air mask first, because you can't help anyone else if you're dead. We know; we get it...
But, do we, really?
It's okay if you want to pretend that you never spread yourself so thin helping others that you suddenly realize it's been three days since you've showered, or you can't recall the last time you slept for more than three hours... We both know the truth.
Now, one can guess what you're probably thinking: “Not everyone has the luxury of self care; some of us have to work for a living; some of us have children to take care of; etc and so forth. Rest assured, you are heard.
The term “Self Love” has adopted many definitions in the era of social media, and has convinced many of us that the only way to truly achieve it is to spend a lot of money or quit our jobs and leave the country. (Eat, Pray, Love may work for the Elizabeth Gilberts of the world, but some of us would rather not...)
This idea of #SelfLove couldn't be further from the truth, though. True Self love comes from a place of authentic self expression; a place that encourages us to express who we truly are and hold ourselves accountable in the pursuit of our goals.
This is what we yogis call Tapas.
The Sanskrit word, Tapas, evokes a sense of passion. It is the third of Patanjali's Niyamas, translating to “austerity” or “discipline.” It is through a practice of Tapas that we can discover the true meaning of self love, because the very foundation of self love is self discipline.
When we set our minds on something in life and commit to seeing it through, no matter how difficult the terrain might become, we are practicing Tapas. When we enter a challenging yoga pose, or rack up the bar to perform a dead-lift, and choose to see it through, no matter how uncomfortable it might be, we are practicing Tapas. When we set a meditation schedule and consciously stick to it, even if our friends invite us out for drinks during that time, we are practicing Tapas.
You see, self discipline, self respect, self accountability, self love; they're all the same thing. We can't have one without the other. So, when we betray our own values to please others, or to conform to society's image of #SelfLove, we are actually doing the opposite and causing immense harm to our mind, body, and soul.
One sure-fire way to show ourselves love is to give ourselves permission to seek more out of life. To set mindful goals and respect ourselves enough to actually see them through. This can be as simple as cutting out soda from your diet, or as complex as pursuing a more fulfilling career. The beauty of being human is our ability to choose. So, choose well.
With so much love and light, we invite you to share your new, healthy lifestyle with us. Get in touch via the Mountain Yoga Studio Facebook page, or drop by the studio for a visit. We can't wait to see you!
1. In case you missed it, our prices have changed! From now on, for only $68 every month, you have unlimited access to our studio. Not ready to commit just yet? No worries, drop in and take any class of your choosing for just $10! 2. Have you heard the news? We've opened a boutique inside the studio! There, you can find some of your favorite yoga-wear (including Beyond Yoga, Spiritual Gangster, the list goes on!) Come on down to the studio to get a closer look and be prepared to update your wishlist! 3. We have two new classes available at our studio! Drop in every Tuesday at 9am to find strength, balance, and flexibility in your body when you get your Vinyasa on! After that, prepare to FLY in our Aireal Yoga class every Thursday at 5:30pm.
Are you a student?
Do you know a student?
If so, today is your lucky day! With your head in the books, the light at the end of the tunnel can appear so dim. We get it. That's why we're offering you a 30% Monthly Unlimited (Yoga, Cycling, or Flex) discount between now and May of 2019!
Your mental and physical health are our top priority. Drop in for a visit to rediscover your light!