(originally posted at wordpress.com on 12 July 2010)
9 a.m., I’m moving through sun salutations in one of my yoga classes. I’m focusing my breath, my mind…I lengthen my arms to the sky & suddenly glance in the mirror as I begin to fold forward.
“Hey!” my latissimus dorsi shouts back. For those of you wondering, this is the muscle that wings out on each side just under the arm. It is usually prominent on body builders, not women in yoga class. This is confirmed as I quickly scan the room using the mirror. No other lats to be seen—only beautiful curves of the female form (no men today). As we raise our arms, I check mine again. Yep, the outline of my curve = lats, not breasts.
I gently nudged the thought from my mind & returned focus to my breath. Obviously, the thought never completely left. It has been lingering in my subconscious (& not-so-subconscious), toying with my self worth.
My body is strong. It is becoming stronger every day, which in turn, has made me start to truly love my body for the first time. So what happened in yoga the other day?
It emerges by first planting seeds of doubt & insecurity; then, it judges others to build itself back up. “Yeah, but I bet they can’t do a pull up.” Whether this is the case or not, it has no relevance to me & my body.
When self worth is pursued by the ego, it breaks only to be pieced together again through comparison to others. Seemingly whole, but ultimately fragile with cracks of external, superficial assurances.
How do we overcome the ego?
Let go of comparisons & judgments. Let go of personalizing. Let go of external identifications. Let go of reactions. Let go of attachments. Let go of excuses.
My name is Allie. I can do a pull up. My "curves" are my lats.
What insecurities have you learned to love about yourself? -- are learning to love or are going to start loving?