A simple self-care hack that actually works
Updated: Jul 24, 2019
This four-part check-in is a simple, yet powerful alignment practice you can do at the start of each new day. It helps you to become more intimate with yourself by checking in with all four layers of your being-body, mind, feelings, and spirit.
I was first introduced to this practice during a weeklong yoga and meditation retreat with one of my teachers, Sara Avant Stover. It works especially well if you’re feeling disconnected, distressed, or emotionally out of sorts. No matter where you’re at, this will help you to come more fully home to yourself.
I like to do it before my morning meditation, but you can practice this any time of the day. Write in your journal or silently go through the steps in your mind.
Start by sitting in a comfortable position, cross-legged or in a chair. Close your eyes, relax your body, and take a few deep breaths into your belly.
Now turn your attention into your body. How is she feeling today? Is there any tension, or any area that needs special attention from you? Ask her what she needs. What would taking really good care of your body look like today? It could be movement, some fresh air or water. Trust the answers that come up and make a commitment to providing your body with what she needs.
Next, check in with your mind. What are the predominant thought-patterns? Are there any obsessive mental loops? Is there doubt, or resistance? What does your mind need from you? Give the thoughts a voice by writing them in your journal. A few pages of long-hand writing to dump the mental clutter can do wonders.
Then, check in with your feelings. Try to come up with at least three adjectives to describe your inner world. It’s natural to have seemingly conflicting feelings at the same time, such as joy and sorrow. Can you allow yourself to be exactly where you are emotionally, or are you resisting parts of your experience? How can you care for your emotions today?
Last, consult with your Big SHE, a.k.a. your inner wise woman. She is the one you can turn to for guidance at any time. Ask “What do you want me to know or do today?” Listen to the silent voice of your heart. The first hunch that comes up is Her speaking. The second, commenting voice is your mind. Trust and act upon the former.
This is it. Getting to know yourself this intimately in any moment will help you to build the strength and security you need within to face any situation or challenge outside with grace and ease.
Listening to your inner cues and acting upon this guidance will not only increase your happiness but also strengthen your resilience so that you can tackle bigger challenges in life.
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