The year I stopped making resolutions was also the year I stopped giving things up for Lent. That year, I spent regular time at a Buddhist Monastery in order to learn to meditate. As a life coach, though I know we can’t separate our bodies from our mind nor our souls. Today, though, because I want to talk a little about soul care and listening to our soul’s needs, a little spirituality is making it’s way into the mix.
One of the tools that works for me personally is to choose a holiday or calendar event (Advent, Winter Solstice, etc.) as a jumping off point to work on a new skill. It helps me make the new practice or pursuit of a new habit, well, stick, because there are external things in the world happening at the same time. Especially when I know it’s time to up my self-love or self-care game.
I know that you probably know that in order to have a nourishing life, you need to love yourself. But that can be easier said than done.
Sometimes, we need to take a step back and slow down. And devote some time and attention to learning to love yourself just a little more. Let me explain why using the time of lent as a way to tend yourself is a good choice no matter your spiritual beliefs.
The first year I chose to use the Lenten season for soul tending wasn’t because I lost my faith. No, darling, after several years of extreme stress and turmoil? I needed to experience joy and learn to love myself.
So, rather than focusing on sacrifice, choose to focus on surrendering to love. Instead of deprivation and self-flagellation, make your intention to focus on love and forgiveness.
Lent ends with Easter. And the culmination of that is about rebirth, love, and and joy.
And when you look at the timeline for Lent, which is forty days (plus the six Sundays not counted on the liturgical calendar), you are setting yourself up for creating a new habit.
That’s why it’s become my tradition for the Lenten Season to find a way to love myself and my life more. Rather than giving something up for Lent as a way of sacrifice, I instead choose to surrender to what my soul is calling for.
This year, I thought I’d go public with my tradition around Lent and invite you to join me. No matter what your religious or spiritual beliefs may be, how does forty days of tending your soul’s needs sound?
How might you surrender to what your soul needs so that you can nurture a deeper self-love?
Because I know that the outside world can feel challenging. And the political season adds a level of toxicity to media and social media. And I know that you could probably use a little more love in your life. So, I simply want to extend an invitation to share this time in our journey through life with the sole goal of tending our delicate souls.
Want to tend your own soul needs so that you can learn how to love yourself more? Begin by asking yourself any or all of these questions:
- What kind of activity would allow me to feel more nourished in my daily life?
- How might I lean into my deeper desires and fuel my life rather than deplete it?
- What is my soul calling me to surrender to?
- How would banishing fear and deprivation play out?
- If I were to examine my relationship with media and social media, would taking a break benefit me?
- In what ways can I allow gratitude and forgiveness heal me?
- What actions can I take to feel more whole and more connected to myself and my life?
You and your life deserves your devotion. And sometimes that means taking a step back, slowing down, and asking what your heart an soul need right now.
As a choice in learning to love yourself more, my dear, I ask that you commit to just one thing during the Lenten period. Perhaps it making meditation or yoga a priority. Maybe it’s a daily writing practice – especially one focused on gratitude. How might a written prayer journal serve you?
Could taking a break from social media allow you to reclaim your focus, time, and attention? Would stretching daily or taking a gratitude walk nourish your body as well as your mind?
What one thing could you be devoted to during the period of Lent? Can you allow a tiny spark can you choose to fuel your own flame? What acts can you make in order to come home to who you are meant to be in this world?