How to Find Self Love Through Yoga

By Linsey Birusingh

The longest relationship you will ever be in is the relationship with yourself. From your first breath to your last, you will share each joy, challenge, idiosyncrasy and thought with that voice in your head called consciousness. It can be a complicated relationship. Everyone is on different parts of the spectrum of experiencing self love or connection to self. Whether you are in a rough patch or the honeymoon phase, this relationship deserves time and work. In fact, the ability to connect with and love ourselves affects our lives so profoundly, that this might be one of the most important things you do.

Your relationship with yourself is the foundation for every other facet of life: how you experience each moment, how you show up in relationships with others, how fulfilled you feel, how hopeful or negative you are about the future, how you view the world, what opportunities you take or think you’re even worthy of, the list goes on. When you come to your yoga mat, the work is all inward. It’s a time to connect with yourself and your source. It is a perfect opportunity to feel more secure, confident and amazing from within. From here you firm your foundation, so every other facet of your life can optimize. Here are a few easy steps in the right direction:

Arrive on your mat with nonjudgemental awareness

This may be very hard. Arriving with nonjudgemental awareness means no expectation of what’s going to happen, accepting who you are on your mat today, physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually, and not wishing you were who you were five years ago or will be in three months. Nonjudgemental awareness is being grateful for the embarrassment of riches you have within you and around you. This awareness is important because it is the key to recognizing any change that will come.

Listen to what arises in each moment

Yoga asks you moment by moment to observe: How are you talking to yourself? Are you treating yourself with kindness? Are you treating yourself with compassion and care? Are you being a cheerleader or a tormentor? Are you repeating negative messages you’ve heard or thought about yourself in the past? Are you bullying yourself? Notice where you are unconsciously tearing yourself down. This is not a time to feel guilty or punish yourself for doing so, but to delight in the opportunity to correct the behavior and choose a more positive response.

Choose to strengthen positive responses

What would a good partner or parent say here instead? This is a question I come back to when I feel myself slip into negative self talk. It might feel a little corny at first, but giving yourself some positive affirmations can change how you feel almost immediately. More importantly, it creates new neural pathways in the brain- a route to a positive relationship with yourself instead of a negative one. When we choose these positive responses time and time again, this route eventually becomes our default way of thinking.

Negative self talk is not the only opportunity to reframe when it comes to self-love on your yoga mat. We must stop comparing ourselves. We know that what we practice on the mat strengthens. If we practice comparing ourselves to others, we will become more critical of ourselves and envious of others. If we catch ourselves in the act of comparison and correct the mental behavior, we strengthen the neural pathway to self acceptance, or maybe even playfulness and freedom to be different in our practice!

Leave your ego at home

Your relationship with yourself can be damaged if your ego mis-identifies or becomes too overpowering. If we let our ego become tied to how we perform the postures or how “good” we are at our practice, we begin to believe that our self-worth lies in our ability to perform this practice rather than enjoy the real benefits of it. The ego can cause us to make choices that do not benefit us at all. Self-love means choosing what you need today, not what would look best on the cover of yoga journal, or impress your yoga teacher or fellow students. When you leave your ego out of it, you learn to listen to what you truly need from your practice. Let it be as messy, creative, or simple and meet yourself where you are. This is true self love.

Make your dates routine

I’ve learned through many years of marriage that no matter how good the relationship is, you still need to find time to nurture your bond. Dates are a time to go past discussion of regular day-to-day functions, and dive deeper. We get to enjoy the true soul of the other person instead of the routines we fallen into. It’s the same with the relationship you have with yourself. You spend much of your day surviving work, external circumstances and checking off to-do lists. When you come to your mat, it’s a regular date to peel back more layers and get more intimate with what’s important to you.

Unlike many other relationships, this one is guaranteed to be life-long. Enjoy the process of getting to know, like, and love what is here, and see if your life isn’t richer because of the work you put in, both on and off of your yoga mat.

 

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2024 Power Life, All Rights Reserved.
Built with 🤍 by Blink Wellness

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About Kirk: 

Kirk was working 80-hour weeks and wearing his shoulders as earrings when he found yoga in 2005. Forever the competitive athlete, he loved the physicality of yoga. When the spiritual and philosophical side of yoga were exposed to him, Kirk was hooked. Yoga provided him with what other activities couldn’t -- the ability to foster the benefits of practice both on and off of the mat. Yoga was something that Kirk could bring into all aspects of his life. 

Kirk knows that yoga can be intimidating, so he crafts a class that is playful and inviting, while still being challenging and safe. His creatively planned classes build strength and flexibility in your body and mind while establishing clarity, giving you more confidence to overcome obstacles in your life, and keeping you injury-free. His classes are themed with a message that is relatable and will inspire you to take it with you off your mat. Kirk has been teaching yoga since 2008 and lead his first teacher training in 2012. Where Kirk truly shines is in coaching, developing and bringing out the best in others.  

Kirk enjoys traveling (40+ countries to date!), snowboarding, and cherishes time with his wife and two daughters. 

About Christen: 

Christen Bakken’s yoga journey began in 1998 in a Bikram studio that provided a safe and secure place to practice. She saw the yoga mat as a place to remember her purpose and a place to play. As she continued her studies and began her journey to teaching in 2006, Christen infused yoga classes with devotion and the yoga mat became a place of personal transformation and healing. Her classes are filled with laughter, song, sweat, and usually heart openers. In 2013, Christen began training yoga teachers. This is the place where she finds the most joy - in community with folks looking to grow and be of greater service in their homes, on their mats, and in the world. Over the years, she has led trainings in Denver, the Midwest, Florida, and now abroad. She has trained in continuing education modules, 200-hour, 300-hour, and 500-hour programs. Beyond the mat, Christen is a passionate adventure seeker - she loves to bike, snowboard, and spend time with her husband and pups. She sees each day as a blessing and hopes to remind all who interact with her of this truth.  

Two Light Studio Parking Information

We validate parking for THREE garages in the area!

  • Two Light garage located directly north of the studio. Please bring your ticket inside for validation.

  • Three Light garage at Main and Truman. Garage entrance on Truman. Please bring your ticket inside for a validation sticker.

  • Power & Light garage at 13th and Grand. Please ask for a parking pass at the studio front desk. (Hot tip: the Power & Light garage has a ton of space! But be sure to give yourself a little extra time to walk to the studio.)

If you find that you are running a couple minutes late due to parking, please call the studio to let the instructor know to wait for you before locking the doors.

Blackstone Studio Parking

  • We have partnered with our friends at Greenslate to provide 1 hour and 15 minute validated parking for Power Life students in the lot at 36th and Harney (just south of the Cottonwood Hotel). Read below to learn how to take advantage of this perk:

    • Step 1: Scan the QR code located in the lot.

    • Step 2: Select your destination (i.e. “yoga studio”).

    • Step 3: Ask for the validation code at the Blackstone studio front desk and enter it on your phone.

    • Step 4: You are all set! Have fun at class!

    Please note:

    • The validation provided by Power Life and Greenslate is for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Need to add additional time to your parking space? You can do that conveniently from your phone!

    • This option is valid once per day per license plate.

East Village Studio Amenities

  • There is a paved lot and gravel lot on the West side of the building.

  • Meters on Court and 4th (by Peace Tree) for $0.25/hour, 9am-9pm Mon. – Sat. 12-hour max

  • Meters on 4th (to the North) for $1.25/hour. Mon – Sat. 4-hour max.

  • All meters are free on Sundays and major holidays.

 How to Find Self Love Through Yoga Info