To honor the month of LOVE, February, that is. I thought it would be very important to talk about self-love and in order to have a deeper understanding of what it is, how we can grow into self-love and how we can achieve this day by day, I decided to interview my dear friend and founder of Eco Fit Yogi, Sarah Wolfe.
Sarah is an amazing young woman, she is finishing college and graduating in Marketing later this year, she has two amazing jobs, one as an intern in marketing in a very competitive firm in Chicago and the second at one of my favorite stores of all time, Crystal-Life Technology, all this while she manages and inspires us through EcoFitYogi!!. She is a yogi, a strong advocate of self-love and a beacon of women empowerment. I feel honor to call her my friend and I am delighted that she accepted to answer a few questions for us on self-love.
Thank you so very much for answering some questions for us, first of all, we would love to know what motivated you to found EcoFitYogi?
As a fitness lover and someone who battled with body image issues since I was in elementary school, I was very sensitive to the fitness message of “look like someone else.” I found it difficult to find workouts via online, that focused on empowerment rather than losing weight.
I saw fitness be a positive gateway into understanding the body, a time to be selfish and honor yourself. Working out shouldn’t be a chore; it should be something that empowers you, a type of life force that allows you to connect your mind and body. I work out six days a week because I have established a relationship with myself that allows me to look forward to my workouts, it’s time that I take out of my day to really understand how my body is feeling.
I’ve learned to establish a sustainable relationship with food and my fitness routine by focusing on loving my body as a whole. EFY is a lifestyle and community, a blog where women and young girls can go to get advice, inspiration, and expand their knowledge on living a life through self-love.
How do you grow into Self-Love? With that I mean how do you give up the battle within yourself?
Great Question! I talk about this on EcoFitYogi, it all comes down to forgiveness. You must forgive yourself in order to fully begin to heal, it is a process. I feel like a lot of the time people think that in order to gain self-love we must take certain steps. But a lot like life it isn’t that simple, there are no levels or directions, it is all individual. We have to create our own process. What I’m trying to say is that in order to come to terms with ourselves and how we feel about our bodies me must truly let go of everything that is holding us back. It’s like a detox, we must rid the body and mind of this negativity and self-doubt that is embedded in us.
Media, as in advertising, television, social network, magazines, and films, all of these forms of communication are one of the leading causes of body image disorders! What or who we surround ourselves with, is an influencer in how we view ourselves. Getting back to the idea of detoxing negativity, we must look at what we are surrounding ourselves with and choose what to get rid of and what to keep.
In order to grow into self-love, we must dissect the pain of our past, get to the root of what’s holding us back. I always suggest to stand in front of your mirror naked, to take that moment of vulnerability and look yourself. To see yourself in that exposed way gives you perspective that your body is your home, it’s a living breathing life-force. You would never walk into your house with muddy shoes, say mean things about it every single day, No you wouldn’t, it is your sanctuary. So, why would you do that to your own body? The place your mind, heart, and spirit lives in. Our culture focuses on the physical, so when we being to peel away that layer and get to the core of it all, it all comes down to emotion. When we see ourselves as beings of feeling and creation rather than physical, we can honestly begin to love ourselves.
How can yoga help self-love and self-image?
Yoga is very powerful when it comes to connecting with the mind on a deeper level. It allows you to get into this space of acceptance and flow with body and honor how it is feeling that day. Yoga has taught me a lot about listening to how I feel. During yoga I take a pause and place one hand on my heart and the other on my belly, it allows me to establish a sense of awareness of respect for what my body does for me each day. Within the yoga culture I’ve noticed that a lot surrounds the “yoga body,” this focus on physical perfection with formations and body ideals. But taking a step back and realizing that perfection is unachievable and that being yourself is realistic, it allows you to have more fun on the mat.
What are your self-love practices?
Self-Love is about giving back to yourself, being proud of your body. I take time each day to be selfish, I love to read, write, and paint. Spending time in nature is a great way to give back to the mind and body, nature heals. I also have fun create new recipes, taking a lavender bath once a month, and trying a new workout routine every week.
I also practice self-love by filtering my media. I don’t watch Bravo and E, instead I watch shows like The Mindy Project, Parks and Rec, Outlander, and Grimm. I love getting my news from Smart Girls, Lenny, Hello Giggles, and Girl Up. I also read books that empower girls like Throne of Glass, Red Queen, The Falconer, Why Not Me, and Yes Please.
These are my Self-Love Values:
- Mantras: A statement repeatedly frequently allows the mind to establish a focus and the body to form an understanding of the goal. It allows the mind and body to find a connection through thought and movement. I created my own mantra, I am Strong, Smart, and Beautiful. Each day I tell myself that and I am able to manifest positive thinking.
- Sustainable Goals: By having establishing goals that have roots and evolve, provides the ability to grow through your practice.
- Healthy Eating: In order to connect to the body organically we need to fuel ourselves with foods that provide energy, nutrients, and happiness. Food is our connection to the earth and gives us the clarity needed to live a life of balance.
- Open Mind & Heart: In order to truly grow you need to open yourself to accepting change and learning to flow with it.
- Strength: Connecting to your inner warrior allows you to tap into the power of being a women and allowing that emotion of pride guide you through your journey of self-love.
- Breath: When you inhale and exhale you are finding the simple moment of being present and at peace, a time where silence fills the gaps of our thoughts and allows us to truly understand ourselves.
How do you create space within yourself in a day when you don’t feel as empowered?
I usually turn to vegan dark chocolate, green tea, and a good book. I also take a deep breath, prayer to my goddesses, and repeat my personal mantra. I try to do something that makes me happy when I’m having an off day, I tend to paint when I get home from school or take a hot shower. Yoga is one of my favorite ways to just release my negative thoughts and let go of the frustration I have. I have to balance my last semester of college, internships, work, and two blogs. I tend to get overwhelmed. But by taking a step back and honoring all the hard work I do and taking some time for myself, I tend to feel a lot better when I remember to stay mindful.
Are there any stones that can help with self-love?
There are many stones that help improve self-love, by working at Crystal Life Technology I am able to be surrounded by their positive energy all the time! Her are my top three:
Aquamarine: Allows you to let go, detox, become sensitive to your body’s feelings, and allows you to reflect.
Rose Quartz: Unconditional love, comfort, heals the heart, forgiveness.
Garnet: Empowerment, strength, connect with self, and courage.
Could you tell us a little bit about your Manifest the Self-challenge that is coming up?
I was inspired by my favorite saying, “The Future is Female.” This challenge will focus on creating determination, courage, and confidence. We will be learning to mindfully manifest personal, spiritual, and career goals. In honor of National Women’s History Month, we will be honoring the power of female energy. When you sign up you will get a weekly schedule that has daily tasks to build up your inner strength to manifest your goals. The schedules will also include vegan recipes, fitness & self-love advice.
I want women to connect to their feminine energy and to empower themselves and others to create their own change, that they control their futures. I find it very important that women embrace their inner warriors and face their fears head on; this challenge provides them with the tools, advice, and motivation to do so.
The winner* of the challenge will be chosen on April 1st. They will receive a small holistic care package and also be featured on the EcoFitYogi blog! The winner will be chosen based on their efforts to #ManifestTheSelf via Instagram, Tumblr, & Facebook. I will keep track of how you are growing from the experience every time you use the #ManifestTheSelf and tag EcoFitYogi.
What is your super power?
Determination. I want to create positive change, I know exactly what I want to do with my life and I will work hard every day to manifest my life vision.
Thank you so much Sarah for your time and for joining us today! I love your super power, that is an awesome power to have 🙂 I am sure you will move mountains!!
Dear reader, we hope that you enjoyed this interview and if you have any questions and comments please leave it below, we would love to hear from you!