Day 30 – Social/Emotional/Spiritual/Intellectual/Physical
It’s day 30— the final post in our challenge. For days I’ve wondered what words would best seal this discovery of self. It’s quite overwhelming to select one subject that ties together topics ranging from power posing to protein, lentils to laughter and kindness with cold showers. My desire in doing this challenge was to expand our visions of “health” into the much broader and infinitely more fulfilling concept called “wellness”— to create a lasting significance and satisfaction that comes with exploration and exercise of our emotional, physical, social, intellectual and spiritual hearts.
I started this process on day one by asking you to lie down in starfish pose and have an honest assessment of what wellness meant to you. When you rose from the floor, each of you had formed a unique foundation upon which you’ve built the last 30 days. The only thing that remains is a capstone to connect and crown this freshly constructed fortress of wellness.
To place it, you must first see it. So for your final tool of construction, find a camera. You’re about to get the social go-ahead to do what many embarrassingly tease and joke about doing behind closed doors: “the selfie”. Yes, I want you to take a photo of yourself. This one won’t be on social media so don’t worry about your most attractive angle or which filter leaves you in the best light. This picture is for your purposes alone and the less doctored the better.
Go ahead. Take your picture. Now, before viewing it, let’s introduce an emotion that often eludes us as humans: gratitude. Begin by expressing gratitude to yourself for whatever level of participation you’ve put into this 30-day reformation of wellness. Next, reflect on any impressions or inspiration you’ve received while reading and recreating your own version of you. Whatever insights you’ve received, feel gratitude to a God, creator or universe that graciously gave them to you.
Now view your photo. If critical thoughts are the first to come, go ahead and allow them entrance but assess their presence by asking yourself the following 10 questions:
1. Do you love yourself enough to forgive yourself?
2. Do you love yourself enough to forgive others?
3. Do you love yourself enough to nourish your body with life-affirming nutrient-rich food the way nature intended?
4. Do you love yourself enough to exercise your body, to stretch, build and strengthen its physical abilities?
5. Do you love yourself enough to seek for eternal truth for both soul and spirit?
6. Do you love yourself enough to live in the moment — to forget the past and not worry so much about the future — to be “present” in every moment of your life?
7. Do you love yourself enough to be kind? Not only to be gentle and giving to others but also to be tender with self?
8. Do you love yourself enough to set aside essential time for sleep and rest?
9. Do you love yourself enough to consistently expand your mind by learning new things and embracing new experiences?
10. Do you love yourself enough to have fun, to laugh, to have joy, to release stress, relax and take the time to re-energize?
These 10 questions should sound familiar if you’ve followed along on this journey. They address many of the critical aspects of wellness we’ve been exploring— and most importantly they all have one common denominator: a deep and enduring love of self.
I described it on day one as the ultimate goal of this venture: love of health, love of self. Beautiful things happen, both in body and soul, when you allow your own love to envelope you. Some may say this is the first step in the remarkable God-like ability to give love to others.
As author Brendon Burchard wrote:
“At the end of our lives, we will ask… Did I live? Did I love? Did I matter?”
My friends, the answer to all three questions depends on how you feel about the face smiling back at you. My hope is that this time we’ve spent together has increased your ability to think well of yourself because wellness begins with you.
Read the above post, follow the exercise and ask yourself the questions. Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day and many will be out showing their adoration for their significant others. On this special day dedicated to the celebration of love: do something you’ve likely never done before… start with yourself first.