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What does it mean to be connected with yourself:

For me, connection means feeling in alignment with my highest self, it’s feeling capable, strong, loving and compassionate. It’s a sense of knowingness and wisdom that is completely unique to me. Lately, I have been searching for more and more ways to feel some sort of connection to myself, perhaps because, I have been feeling disconnected.

It’s so easy to go through the ins and outs of life and forget some of the important things. Connection for me is important. I’m not going to judge myself for feeling disconnected, but instead, focus on things that I can do to get back in touch with myself. I’m sure some of you have felt this way at one time or another, so I thought I would share with you my ways of finding that connection with myself. Enjoy!

Sitting with yourself: (aka meditation)

I have truly found the importance and benefit of sitting with yourself on a daily basis. No matter how much time I have, I make sure that before I begin my day I start out with a few minutes of meditation. For me, meditation is an instant connector with my higher self. It lets me know where I stand, how I’m feeling, and prepares me to enter my day. I try not to judge my thoughts that come and go and just allow. Each day is different for me with my meditation practice, but I have found that it’s best to be flexible and find what works in the given moment.

Looking at yourself:

I first learned about mirror work while on retreat with Louise Hay. She passed around little hand-held mirrors and had us sit, looking into the mirror, and telling ourselves that we loved ourselves. I never could have imagined how hard this would be! Try taking some time every day to look at yourself in the mirror with purpose. Look yourself in the eyes and remind yourself of how much you love yourself. This isn’t an egotistical exercise, it really has nothing to do with the body or your physical appearance; it’s about loving and honouring yourself on a soul level. Everyday for years, I would go to yoga in a room that had mirrors, and therefore I spent 90 minutes a day looking at myself in a meditative state. Due to my travels, I have been lacking in that experience and have realised how much that time helps me to connect with myself. Try it out! Look into a mirror today and say, “I love you.”

Disconnect from technology:

Many times when I’m feeling disconnected from myself, I’m TOO connected to technology. We live in a technology-driven world, I understand that; it’s so important to take some time away from the screens and give your eyes and mind a break! Make sometime each day to be on a mini-digital detox.

Spend time in nature:

Being in nature immediately helps me to shift my energy and connect with myself. There is something so comforting about being with Mother Nature, and I’ve been craving that time more and more lately. Whether it’s heading out to the beach or even taking a walk in a local park, nature can have so many healing and connecting properties.

Journaling:

Sometimes we have so many thoughts going through our minds it’s hard to keep track of what’s going on. This leads to me feeling completely disconnected from myself and sometimes overwhelmed. I’ve found that journaling is a tool that can help from feeling this way. I like to spend a few minutes in the morning just free-writing thoughts, in a sense to let it all go. I don’t analyse or try to make it perfect, I just write. I feel so much clearer and connected afterwards.

Notice your feelings:

Notice what you’re feeling at any given time, Kogan said. For instance, let’s say you’re rushing to an appointment. Take a moment to pause, and find where in your body you’re holding your stress, she said.

“Is it your jaw, stomach or neck?” Once you discover the tension, focus on breathing into it, she said.

Name your feelings:

Another way to connect to yourself is by naming how you’re feeling at a particular moment, Kogan said. This could be as simple as saying one word to yourself, such as upset, angry or anxious.

She gave the following example: If you’re going on a blind date, you might be experiencing several different emotions. You might feel excited about the possibility of meeting someone you like. And you might be stressed out about meeting a complete stranger. Acknowledge both these feelings by identifying and describing them.

Accept your thoughts and emotions:

According to Kogan, the key to connecting with ourselves is doing so without judging our cognitions, feelings or experiences.

“It might feel counterintuitive, but accepting all of your thoughts and emotions — without pushing them away — will actually help you let go of stress and feel more grounded and more awake in the world.”

Instead of judging yourself, again, focus on observing your feelings and noticing the sensations that arise in your body, she said. “Just like a river that flows by us as we stand on the bank to watch it, our feelings will move through us and pass us by.”

You also don’t need to “do anything” or fix your feelings — simply notice, she said.

Engage in enjoyable solo activities:

We also can connect with ourselves through solitude — engaging in solo activities that we find energising or calming. According to Kogan, sample activities include: walking in nature; petting your dog or cat; creating art (focusing on the process, not the product); listening to favourite music; and cooking dinner.

She also suggested recalling the activities you enjoyed as a child and giving those a try today.

“As you do these things note how you are feeling and breathe through the experience.” When tough moments arise in your life, summon these feelings of serenity to help you cope.

Practice self-compassion:

“Self-compassion is a big part of connecting to yourself,” Kogan said. Contrary to popular belief, self-compassion isn’t self-indulgent, and it doesn’t lead to complacency.

“Research shows that self-compassion actually correlates to better results whether it be performing in a race, in a courtroom or even feeling comfortable in our own selves.”

Connecting to yourself is a daily process. It entails focusing on our feelings, letting go of judgment and being kind. One step thought and feeling, at a time.

Author: Michelle Maros

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