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A couple of months ago I bought a little book called ‘When I loved myself enough’ by Kim McMillen. It’s a cute little book in which the author tells us about all of the things she does now that she has learnt to love herself, for example she says “whehttp://www.taracasa.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/profile-FB.jpgn I loved my self enough, I learned to stop what I am doing, if even for a moment, and comfort the part of me that is sacred” and “when I loved myself enough, I gave up the belief that life is hard”. It’s sweet and I was reminded of it this evening as I came to the end of a day in which I realised I had loved myself enough to have a ‘me day’ without even consciously planning it.

 Getting Pampered…

It began this morning – my cousin Lexi giving me a wonderful Indian Head massage – something I’ve been promising to myself for quite a number of years now. It’s taken a family member to go to beauty college for two years for me to actually go and get one, but I asked her if she would give me one and in the past I may not have asked for fear of putting her out… maybe I love myself enough now to know I deserve it. Then since my hair was oily and my face all puffed up from resting my face on a cushion, I took myself off for a swim, sandwiched between two stints in the sauna to cleanse from the inside out.

 The soul stuff…

After that I had a brain wave – I thought I’ll go home and eat and then I’ll train it all the way across London to Camden to do a restorative Yoga class because I’m teaching a restorative workshop on Sunday and it’s good practise, but when I got home the introvert in me started protesting. It’s been a busy week and what I really needed was to be at home and to shut the door on the world… and because I love myself enough, I retreated to my room, put on some incense, pulled a few tarot cards, meditated on something that was playing on my mind and got clarity on it, as well as a renewed feeling of strength, and then I wrote about it in my journal because writing brings further clarity and insight. Then I sort out some relaxing, sensual music I’d not heard before and melted into my bolster – much nicer than trekking it to Camden on a Friday night unless you’re in that kind of mood!

 The power of Mother Nature…

The day seemed done, but I sensed the need for fresh air… Farthing Downs is right behind my house, but the lazy gremlin in me thought naaaaaa…. Obviously my will is stronger than it once was because I ssh’d the gremlin and went up there anyway. It was deliciously humid, lightly raining and the occasional low rumble of thunder added a dash of atmosphere – my favourite kind. Being a Friday evening, I virtually had the place to myself. Sat overlooking a lush green valley (really pulling the clichés out now), the evening air warm enough to wear just a t-shirt and let the rain on my skin. Breathe…. Nature…. Beauty…. Peace… the icing on the cake. It reminded me of the freedom I’ve experienced camping at the Buddhafield and Wild heart festivals, which sadly I won’t get to go to this year, but now I’ll remember to seek that feeling out wherever I can.

Staying in the flow…

Finally, I loved myself enough today to not finish off my day by zoning out with Netflix, but to stay present and use the inspiration today has given me to massage my creative juices that I’ve neglected for so much of my life, and to write and reflect on my experience here.

The only real plan I had today was to not work. From there I followed my instincts, honoured my feelings, and stopped and questioned myself before doing something that didn’t feel quite right. It’s a rare day to be so in the flow, especially when life is busy and there is so much to do. How often do we think we’ll do something nice for ourselves when the To Do list is done. I’m sure you know this but let me tell you anyway… the To Do list will never be done so be nice to yourself right NOW!!

 Look after yourself any which way you need it…

Looking after yourself doesn’t have to be all massages and nature – last week I saw a band I love, hung out with my family and took loads of photo’s and had fun instagramming them and that was what my soul needed then. If you aren’t hearing your soul calling and taking care of your needs, who will? Give yourself time… love yourself enough.

written br Rachael Wharton www.yogawithrachael.com

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