4 Yoga Practices For Self Love
Show Yourself some Love!
While we enjoy caring for our loved ones, it’s important to give a little care and love for yourself, too. Self-love is all about fostering a healthy sense of self-esteem and recognizing your worth.
Sometimes, it doesn’t feel so easy to love yourself, yet having a negative self-image sets you up for illnesses such as anxiety and depression. You may notice that you put the needs of others before yourself; as the “people pleaser,” you often compare yourself to others, or you avoid certain situations or opportunities for fear of failure.
This is where yoga comes in. Yoga puts you in a state of meditation, helping you to let go of the thoughts that whisper you are not good enough and keep you in a state of low self-esteem. Yoga replaces them with positive thoughts such as the feelings of strength, stability, and energy that come with practicing yoga.
Yoga is a chance to focus on yourself and tune into your body’s needs. Use these four yoga practices to open your heart and to truly embrace vulnerability.
When we let down our walls, we open ourselves up to give and receive the love we deserve, a job that only we can do for ourselves. Open up and let your light shine through!
1. Warrior I Pose
This pose activates your root chakra located at the base of your spine, grounding and centering you. The root chakra is all about letting go of fear.
Adding a slight back bend opens the heart and solar plexus area above the navel.
The solar plexus is the area of personal power and self-esteem.
- Begin in wide standing at the center of your mat with your feet about two feet apart.
- Turn your right foot out to face the front of the mat and the left foot out at a 45-degree angle so the toes point toward the top left corner of the mat.
- Inhale and raise your arms up overhead, reaching through the fingertips and relaxing your shoulder blades down your back.
- Exhale and sink your pelvis down, bending into the right leg so that the right knee is over the right ankle. Check that you can see your big toe on that right foot to protect your knee.
- Continue breathing and pressing down into that back left foot to take pressure off the right knee.
- Square the hips by pulling the right hip back and the left hip forward. Repeat on the other leg.
2. Lotus Mudra
A mudra is a hand gesture that you can use to deepen your yoga practice.
The lotus mudra helps you open to your inner beauty. A lotus grows from the mud below water and blossoms on top of the surface, beautiful and clean of mud.
This symbolizes how beauty can stem even from the darkest places. Nothing can dull your beautiful inner light.
- Bring your palms into a prayer position, keeping your thumbs, pinkies, and the heels of your hands together.
- Gently separate the middle of your palms, creating a small bowl with your palms.
- Expand your first, middle, and ring fingers like the petals of a lotus.
3. Kneeling Heart-Opener
This pose is all about the heart chakra. As you breathe in, imagine the green light of the heart filling and healing your chakra.
- Come to sit on your shins, resting your glutes on your heels, toes untucked so that the tops of the feet are on the mat.
- Bring your right arm behind you onto the mat about one hand distance away from you, just to the outside of the right foot.
- Bring your left arm back as well, fingers of both hands pointed away from your body.
- Inhale and arch your back, reaching up with your collar bones and chest as your neck relaxes, chin pointing to the sky.
- Exhale here. On the inhales, keep pushing down through your hands, sending your chest up.
- Be mindful that the shoulders stay away from the ears by gently pulling your shoulder blades toward your pelvis and keep your glutes down onto your feet.
- Counter with child’s pose.
4. Thunderbolt Mudra
Use this mudra to foster confidence. It can help you overcome the fear and self-doubt that often plays in the back of our minds.
Thunderbolts symbolize power, so this mudra allows you to tap into the personal power that is always inside of you.
There is nothing more powerful than truly loving yourself for who you are.
- Find a comfortable seated position.
- Interlace your fingers, placing your palms over the center of your heart while widening your thumbs out and pointing up to the sky.
- Breathe in confidence, breathe out and let go of doubt.
You can use these yoga practices whenever you have a spare moment to show yourself a little love.
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