What other people think of me is none of my business.

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There’s a baby boy joining our family in about five weeks and to say we’re excited for this blessed event would be a real understatement.

As we anticipate his arrival, I wonder about him. What will his interests be and what will he prefer as toys? Dinosaurs? Cars and trucks? Cardboard boxes, pots and pans?

Will he be artistic? Athletic? Easy going or excitable? Will music bring him joy the way it has for his mommy ever since she was my newborn?

What will his personality be like? And how can we help him to always feel safe and unconditionally loved? How can we foster a sense of joy and belonging for this fresh little soul who is about to be exposed to a lifetime of other people’s opinions?

I love this quote by Don Miguel Ruiz:

“Just imagine becoming the way you used to be as a very young child, before you understood the meaning of any word, before opinions took over your mind. The real you is loving, joyful and free. The real you is just like a flower, just like the wind, just like the ocean, just like the sun.”  ~ Don Miguel Ruiz

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My baby grandson is coming into this world pure and innocent, full of curiosity and wonder – just like you and I did!

When we take our first breath in this life we begin to experience planet Earth through our senses. We take it all in, interpreting events the best we can. We begin to form opinions about ourselves based on personal experiences and interactions with others.

And you know, it’s part of the human condition to mix things up sometimes– to misinterpret things and then hold them as our truth.

When we dip our toes into the well of self-realization, we may discover that the way we habitually think and talk about ourselves is based on another human’s incorrect assessments. We take on beliefs about ourselves that simply aren’t true.

For example:

  • The 5th grade teacher who said I was a slow reader with poor comprehension. I am stupid. Not true. My Taurus nature allows me to take my time and I can devour a good novel – and remember every bit of the story – with the best of them.
  • The uncle who greeted 11-year old me at a family gathering as “Hey Chubby” and would validate what I was already noticing about my growing and changing body. I am fat. Not true. Though it would take many years with an eating disorder and practice loving myself to overcome those two careless words.
  • The 7th grade gym teacher who bellowed “You run like you’re pulling a trailer!” humiliating me in front of my classmates. I am slow. And well, this one might be close to the truth but who cares how fast I run? Not me.
  • The father who left my mother several times because he “just couldn’t take it anymore” and helped me interpret the world of relationships as unpredictable and impossible for me to attain. I am unlovable. Not true. I have found true love within myself first, and from others since.

So how do we overcome these false beliefs? How to we change the way we think and talk about ourselves? Well, first we begin to notice our habitual thinking patterns and then we create new affirmations to recover our truth.

Louise Hay said, “If you want to clean house you need to see the dirt.”And even though that’s not always fun and games, it can be extremely liberating.

Our yoga practice teaches us to be the observer of our thoughts. The things we repeat in our mind become affirmations, and those affirmations shape our beliefs about ourselves.

Notice how you fill in the blank for the following statement:

I am ____________.

I am stupid? I am fat? I am slow? I am unlovable? All untrue.

Be intentional and practice changing your affirmations with more empowering statements – affirm the truth about yourself!

I am wise. I am healthy. I am strong. I am worthy of love. 100% truth.

“The real you is loving, joyful and free. The real you is just like a flower, just like the wind, just like the ocean, just like the sun.”  ~ Don Miguel Ruiz

My friend, you came into this life just like my baby grandson will – pure love and light, innocent and full of potential, free from the opinions of others. I hope you can find a way to reconnect to this, and use it to establish some really sweet affirmations for yourself.

What are your current “I am” statements and how will you be changing those going forward?

I am so grateful to have you on this journey.

PS: This is also a reminder to be gentle with your words toward others. You just never know how your opinion will land. Be so kind to yourself and others.

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