The Greatest Love Of All



Many people think of Valentine's Day when February rolls around. A holiday that traditionally celebrates romantic love. But the root of every relationship starts with the love we have for our self. So whether you have a significant other or not on February 14th, it's an opportunity ask yourself, "Am I loving myself enough?"

How well we love ourself shows up in many forms. It's in the relationships we choose, the way we allow others to treat us, the boundaries we set for ourselves - our willingness to say "no" when it's warranted, our diet, lifestyle choices, self-care practices and how well we listen to our bodies.

The body is a truth teller. It holds the deeper language of our mind and heart. Disease and illness often occurs when we have been holding DIS-EASE within our self. Sometimes it's in the form of long held traumas, limited beliefs and old stories we still tell ourself.

When problems with our health start showing up, our body is asking us (sometimes begging us) to stop and listen. It's an opportunity to get quiet, to go within and pay attention to how we feel and what we really need for well being.

My body stopped me in my tracks a few times a little over a year ago resulting in two surgeries 3 months apart. It was easy for me to push through things...until it wasn't. An emergency surgery, followed by a planned surgery (that was a result of many painful months "managing" my symptoms) forced me into a place of surrender. I was ordered to take 4-6 weeks of recovery and rest. "REST? What's that?" I knew what exhaustion and overwhelm felt like. It sometimes stopped me from doing anything. But real rest was foreign to me.

So after surgery I rested for 4 weeks. What did I learn? Rest for me equaled self-care and ultimately self-love. I honored my body, stopped trying to do it all and allowed my body to heal. This pause helped to give me presence. I listened to what my body was trying tell me. I paid attention and began to nurture myself.

It's easy to be a victim when life isn't going the way we planned or hoped it would. When sh*t hits the fan, it's easy to say, "Why Me?" But it's more productive to say, "What can I learn from this?" My lesson was to let go of the old story "I'm not worthy." To stop putting everything and everyone else in front of what was best for me. I learned I needed to become my own mother, making my well being a priority. As I recovered, getting back to my yoga and daily Ayurvedic practices were key for me. Here's something else I know. We don't need to look outside of ourselves for love. That divine light is already within us. We ARE love. Everything starts from here.

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Nikki Estes CAP, E-RYT, YACEP

262-378-0716

yoganikki@gmail.com

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