I spent this past weekend in Vancouver for a retreat hosted by Lululemon called “Purpose and Practice”.
I wasn’t sure what to expect going into it.
My intention was to be open no matter what.
I knew this weekend would be powerful but I didn’t expect it to be completely life changing
Im writing about my experience while it’s still fresh because I’m riding this new state of expansion and I want to share my insights.
Without going into all the details of the weekend, I wanted to talk about the inward journey I experienced.
I haven’t opened up to many people about this, but I have been struggling with my body image my whole adult life.
I’ve been so hard on myself especially when I’ve gained a few pounds or I’ve seen an unflattering picture.
I could receive all the compliments in the world but my inner dialogue would still sound something like this
“I hate my arms/ass/legs they’re huge.”
“I’m at the gym every day, how do I still have cellulite”
“I’m going to get fat”.
“I am fat.”
These are just a few examples.
These kinds of thoughts and emotions would become louder when I was dating or if I felt hurt by another persons actions.
About a year ago it became too much.
I held these feelings inside for too long and they were deeply affecting every aspect of my life.
I was cancelling dinner dates and staying home because I didn’t want to overeat.
Counting carbs and calories, and depriving myself of certain foods, then overindulging and beating myself up for it.
I was attaching my self worth to the way I felt about my body.
Something needed to change.
I only shared this with a select few people in my life because I felt like a failure.
Opening up was like shining a light on this dark thing, and I’m thankful I asked for help.
I started to gain insight around my triggers.
Sometimes they look like me scrolling through my phone while having dinner or eating so quickly that I don’t even really taste it
My healing process around food started long before this past weekend, but the retreat was the perfect place to explore my default habits that I go to when I’m feeling sad vulnerable, lonely or angry.
The 1st morning I ate breakfast in silence without my phone nearby and nothing to keep me occupied.
It was just me, my mindful attention and a plate of food.
I actually really enjoyed that meal.
It felt good to eat slowly.
My body felt nourished and I didn’t need to go for seconds because I was satisfied.
The mantra that I’m keeping top of mind is “Release self doubt, invite self love.
The past doesn’t define me, in fact I’m thankful for the lessons because they brought me clarity on the mental dysfunctions that have been holding me back and keeping me small.
I can see it with compassion and wisdom, and maybe I can help another who is going through something similar.
This retreat connected me with so many other brave humans that were also willing to change and they made it feel safe to be myself.
Another limiting belief I’ve held is if I actually allowed someone to see the amount of emotion I have, sadness, passion and anger they’d leave.
This weekend showed me, that when I’m 100% authentically myself with someone it gives them permission to show up in the same way if they choose it.
And what a gift that is.
I was chosen to stand on a stage in front of 200 people to speak about my Dharma and how I want to show up in every moment.
With my heart racing, drenched in sweat
I stood up there and spoke to all those people.
I can’t even fully remember what I said
It was terrifying
And it felt wonderful
I’ve never felt so empowered
This weekend brought me back to what is important.
What Lululemon and their amazing Facilitators did was create an elevated space where each person had the opportunity be liberated if they chose it.
I got back to the basics
I was able to slow down in Meditation
I gained clarity in that stillness
Each day was a gift and I was thankful for the beautiful practice of yoga and the strong mindful movements I took.
It was an opportunity to take time for myself.
To write from my heart.
To release the thoughts and beliefs that haven’t been serving me and to celebrate my contributions to humanity.
I’m clear on who I am and how I want to show up in each moment.
I am awake.
I am open.
And I’m willing to change.
I am lit up by my life’s purpose as a healer and writer and what ever else is in the pipeline for me.
I choose to treat myself and others with respect and compassion.