On Silence and Solitude

Over the past few days I have been thinking about self-love practices, and how I care for myself. Not just in the sense of talking care of my body and mind, but truly caring for my Being. This was prompted by a lot of self-reflexive exercises and practices of Dadirri, as inspired by my studies with Yoga For Humankind. This was driven home by some questions asked by my dear mentor and friends, and the exploration we are doing through the YogaPlus Wellness Won’t Wait Community.

That’s a hefty introduction for this #7daysofSelfLove practice I want to share with here today. I hope you’re still reading on!

Practice No.1 is Time in Silence and Solitude.

It may sound funny how, in this time of physical distancing and isolation, I found that one of the best practices of self-love for me is taking time in silence and solitude.

BC (before covid), that often meant taking a trip to the beach and sitting by the water under the sun in deep listening. No need for the internet, or Spotify, or a podcast of a book…just me and the song of the sea in harmony with the rhythm of the wind. So much was said and heard in those pockets of silence and solitude.

Last week, I took the week off, not in the beach, and admittedly not in as much silence and solitude as I would out of the city, but in little pockets of silence: sitting in my room alone (yes, without Joe!), diffusing a blend of bergamot, lime and spearmint to mimic the crisp smell of open air, and putting my phone away for the weekend (but yeah, I’ll be honest: it’s easier said than done!).

I didn’t realize how much I missed the quiet solitude of not being on the internet all day long, and away from social media, Zoom, online summits, trainings and other opportunities, and the silence that comes with it. I realized that even if my current circumstances allow me more space to not engage in conversation and to be more internal in my process, it was still a lot of external engagement, this time with my eyes and sometimes ears rather than my voice or in speaking.

Don’t get me wrong: I love being online and I still did get some work done during my little sabbatical, but not being “on” all day made such a big difference! It reminded me of how it would feel to hide away in the pantry or the yin room in between classes at the YogaPlus Makati studio to nap, stare into space and just listen to the quiet.

I’m grateful for the space to pause and be reminded of this, and am making a conscious effort to retreat into my home space without my phone nearby.

If you’ve made it this far, let me ask you now: how do you practice self-love? Please do share.

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