Relationship Failure - the Art of Living Retreat Center

The One Major Cause of Relationship Failure

By Margaret Paul
December 12, 2018

Relationship Failure - the Art of Living Retreat Center


What if there really is ONE major cause of relationship problems, one issue that if you address, would change everything? The good news and the bad news is – there is!

The good news is that it makes it easier to understand why you might be having problems in your relationship, or why your relationship has failed.

The bad news is that to resolve the issue takes a deep personal commitment to heal.


The one cause is: self-abandonment

Let’s take a look at what self-abandonment is and why it causes almost all the problems in relationships.

There are many areas in which we can abandon ourselves: emotional, physical, spiritual, financial, relational, and organizational. One or more of these areas may be affecting your relationship, or may have caused your relationship to fail. The area of self-abandonment that often causes the most problems is emotional self-abandonment.


Emotional self-abandonment

The Encarta(r) World English Dictionary defines ‘abandon’ as: “to leave somebody or something behind for others to look after, especially somebody or something meant to be a personal responsibility.”

As adults, our own wellbeing is our personal responsibility.

Do you abandon yourself, making your partner responsible for you, and then feel abandoned by your partner or others when they leave you or don’t take responsibility for you?

As an adult, another person cannot abandon you, since they are not responsible for you. We can abandon a child, an ill person or an old person – someone who cannot take care of themselves. But if you are a physically healthy adult, you can be left, but you cannot be abandoned by others. Only you can abandon yourself.

What are the ways you might be abandoning yourself?


Judging yourself

How often do you judge yourself with comments to yourself such as:
“You are not good enough.” “You are inadequate.”
“You are stupid.” “You are an idiot.”
“You are ugly.” “You are not attractive enough.”
“If you fail, you are not okay.”
“If someone rejects you, you are not okay.”
“It’s all your fault that….”
“You will never amount to anything. You are a failure. You are not reaching your potential.”
…and so on.

Just as a small child feels alone and abandoned when a parent is harsh and judgmental, so your own inner child – your inner feeling self – feels alone and abandoned when you judge yourself. Self-judgment not only creates inner feelings of aloneness and emptiness, but it also creates feelings of anxiety, depression, anger, hurt, fear, guilt, shame, aloneness and emptiness. Then what do you do when you have judged yourself and created all these painful feelings?


Making others responsible for you

Once you judge yourself and then ignore the pain you have caused, it is quite likely that you then turn to your partner for the love and approval that you are not giving to yourself. Your inner child needs love, approval and attention. We all need the love and comfort of others, but when you abandon yourself with your self-judgments and ignore your feelings, the wounded child part of you turns to your partner in needy, controlling ways that may actually push your partner away. Because the child part of you is desperately needy for love, you likely become manipulative to get that love – getting angry and blaming, or becoming overly nice or compliant and trying to do everything right. You have handed your inner child away to your partner, hoping he or she will give you the love you are not giving to yourself and that you so desperately need.

The more you make your partner responsible for giving you the love, attention and approval you need, the more your inner child feels abandoned by you, leading to more addictive and controlling behavior to fill the emptiness and avoid the pain of your self-abandonment.
People tend to treat us the way we treat ourselves, so the more you abandon yourself, the more you might feel rejected by your partner.


Financial self-abandonment

When we refuse to take care of ourselves financially, instead expecting our partner to take financial responsibility for us, this can create problems. This is not a problem if your partner agrees to take financial responsibility for you and you fully accept how he or she takes this responsibility, but if you choose to be financially irresponsible, much conflict can occur over your financial self-abandonment.


Organizational self-abandonment

If you refuse to take responsibility for your own time and space, instead being consistently late or being a clutterer, and your partner is an on-time and/or neat person, this can create huge power struggles. In fact, some relationships actually break up over these issues. While these issues might not have seemed so major at the beginning of the relationship, over time they can erode the love between you.


Physical self-abandonment

If you refuse to take care of yourself physically, instead eating badly and not exercising and possibly causing yourself health problems, your partner may feel resentful at having to take care of you. Your physical self-abandonment not only has negative consequences for you regarding your health and well being, but it also has unwanted consequences for your partner, which can lead to much conflict and power struggles.

If, due to physical self-abandonment, you have put on a lot of weight, this might be a turn off to your partner. It might not just be your weight that is the turn off, but also the fact that you don’t care enough about yourself to take care of your physical wellbeing. Again, not caring about yourself might be reflected back to you in your partner also not caring about you.


Relational self-abandonment

If you refuse to speak up for yourself in your relationship, instead giving yourself up and allowing your partner to control you, you are eroding the love in the relationship. When you abandon yourself to your partner, you create a lack of trust that leads to conflict and resentment, because if your partner knows that he or she can manipulate you into giving yourself up, how can he or she trust that you are not going to allow yourself to be manipulated by others?


Spiritual self-abandonment

When you make your partner your dependable source of love rather than learning to turn to a spiritual source for your dependable source of love, you place a very unfair burden on your partner. When your intent in the relationship is to get love rather than to share love, then you will pull on your partner for attention, approval, time, or sex. When you do not take responsibility for learning how to connect with a spiritual source of sustenance and comfort, your neediness can create much conflict in the relationship.


Controlling behavior pushes your partner away

Trying to get love, rather than learning to fill yourself up with love to be shared with your partner, is a major result of self-abandonment. The more you abandon yourself in these ways, the more you will try to control your partner, and the more you try to control your partner, the more he or she will likely pull away.

What are the ways you try to control your partner?
Do you:

  • Explain and defend yourself?
  • Shame and judge your partner?
  • Comply, giving yourself up?
  • Withdraw, shut down, ignore, resist?
  • Yell, blame, and attack?
  • Complain?
  • Cry as a victim?

How does your partner respond when you attempt to control in these ways? Does this lead to closeness or to distance? These are some of the ways you might be trying to get love from your partner when you are abandoning yourself.


The way out: learning to love yourself rather than abandon yourself

When you decide to learn to love yourself rather than continue to abandon yourself, you will discover how to create a loving relationship with your partner. Practicing the 6-Step self-healing Inner Bonding® process is a very powerful way of learning to love yourself!


A brief overview of the Six Steps of Inner Bonding

Step 1: Willingness to Feel Pain and Take Responsibility for Your Feelings
In Step 1, you move into the present moment and focus within, tuning into your feelings and emotions – moving toward your feelings rather than away from them. You make the choice to be mindful of all your feelings, including your pain, rather than protect against them with various addictions. You make a conscious decision that you want to take responsibility for your feelings, which means that you want responsibility for learning how you might be causing your own anxiety, depression, anger, guilt and shame with your own thoughts and actions, and that you want responsibility for learning how to nurture the painful existential feelings of life – the loneliness, heartbreak, grief and helplessness concerning others that are so challenging.

Step 2: Move into the Intent to Learn
In Step 2, you focus in your heart and invite the compassionate presence of your higher self into your heart, by simply saying, “I invite love and compassion into my heart.”
Now you’re ready to focus on “intent” – your deepest desire, your primary motivation. There are only two possible intents you can have in any given moment:

  • The intent to protect yourself from pain with various forms of controlling, self-abandoning behavior, or
  • The intent to learn about loving yourself and others

When your intent is to learn, you are operating as a loving adult. When your intent to avoid your pain with some form of self-abandoning behavior, you are operating from your programmed ego self – what we call in Inner Bonding your ‘wounded self’.

Step 3: Dialogue with Your Wounded self and Your Inner Child
With kindness, gentleness and compassion toward yourself, you discover the thoughts and false beliefs from your wounded self that may be causing your shame, fear, anxiety, depression, aloneness, emptiness or anger, and you learn how to release anger in appropriate ways. You uncover the false beliefs that were created in the past and have led to the self-abandonment that is causing much of your current pain. You explore what may be happening with a person or event that is causing the existential painful feelings of life – loneliness, heartache, heartbreak, helplessness concerning others, or grief. You explore your core self – your essence, your inner child, which is your feeling self – and discover what brings you joy.

Only when the unconscious false beliefs that have limited you for so long are understood and identified, can they be replaced by new and healthier truths that will nurture and heal you.

In Step 3, you ask yourself questions, such as, “What am I telling myself and how am I treating myself that is causing my pain?” “What am I trying to control or avoid with my controlling behavior?”

Step 4: Dialogue with Your Inner or Higher Guidance
In Step 4, you ask a source of inner or higher wisdom – whatever that is for you: “What is the truth about the false beliefs I may have uncovered in Step 3?” And, “What is the loving behavior toward my inner child in this situation? What is in my highest good? What is kind to myself?” You open and allow the answers to come through you in words, pictures or feelings. The answers may not come immediately, but if you have a sincere desire to learn, they will come.

By staying open to learning, you will begin to experience that you are never alone. This is where fears start to fall away and you begin to receive all the love and wisdom you need to take loving actions for yourself and with others.


Step 5: Take Loving Action
Step 5 is about telling yourself the truth and taking the loving action based on the information that came through from your inner or higher guidance in Step 4.


You have opened to your pain, moved into learning, started a dialogue with your wounded self and inner child, and tapped into your higher wisdom. In step 5 you take the ‘loving action’ that, over time, heals the painful feelings that have been the result of your self-abandonment.

Step 6: Evaluate Your Action
Once you take the loving action, you check in to see if your anxiety, depression, guilt, shame, anger, aloneness or emptiness is getting healed. If not, go back through the steps until you discover the truth and actions that bring you relief, peace, joy, and a deep sense of intrinsic worth.

Turning this daily practice into a way of life is what will protect you from going back into self-abandoning behaviors. Much like attending to – say – a child’s feelings, you learn to keep a loving relationship with yourself throughout your life, no matter the challenges that come at you. This loving relationship with yourself and your higher guidance fills you and empowers you to handle life’s challenges with strength and equanimity. This is what then leads to being able to share love with your partner, rather than always trying to get love.

Even if just one of you in a relationship starts to learn to love yourself rather than abandon yourself, your relationship can begin to heal. Try it! You will be truly amazed at the results!


Learn more about the Inner Bonding Process and heal your relationships, your emotions, and your spirit. Dr. Margaret Paul hosts the Inner Bonding workshop at the Art of Living Retreat Center from May 17th-19th, 2019.


Dr. Margaret Paul is a bestselling author and co-creator of the powerful Inner Bonding® self-healing process, and the related SelfQuest® self-healing online program – recommended by actress Lindsay Wagner and singer Alanis Morissette. She has appeared on numerous radio and television shows, including Oprah. Margaret holds a PhD in psychology, is a relationship expert, public speaker, consultant and artist. She has successfully worked with thousands and taught classes and seminars for over 50 years.


Interested in learning more about Ayurveda and the programs at the Art of Living Retreat Center? Check out our annual catalog here!


Yoga Retreat Catalog for NC

TAGS: abandonment , Love , margaret paul , relationships , resilience , wellness
Inner Light - Art of Living Retreat Center

Celebrating Light Illuminates the Dark Days of Winter and Dark Nights of the Soul

By Lisa Cypers Kamen
December 4, 2018

Inner Light - Art of Living Retreat Center

It is precisely because we resist the darkness in ourselves that we miss the depths of the loveliness, beauty, brilliance, creativity, and joy that lie at our core.” ― Thomas Moore


Life is never static and change is the only guarantee.

As the holiday season comes upon us, many people experience winter blues. Perhaps it is triggered by shorter days, longer nights or even the holidays themselves reminding us that we might not have a picture perfect Hallmark family unit. Regardless of the reasons, the effects are quite similar for people: lethargy, sadness, loneliness, apathy, fear, and so on. If these emotions are something you struggle with- especially during the holiday season- heed some simple advice on how you can celebrate the Light to illuminate such dark days.


The dark night can be a beautiful experience

If you talk to those who have been through some “dark nights of the soul”, they will tell you now that they can look back upon the experience and see the beauty of such. Now back then when they were enduring the darkness, they did not see or feel beauty. Nope, they felt pain and hopelessness. They felt suffering. They felt some agony in their souls. Unbeknownst to them at the time, their egos or false Self was being obliterated, which produces some pain.

But as they endured their dark season, they came out a refined and purified soul full of radiant Light. They’d learned some valuable life and spiritual lessons through the sacred process. Think of it as a spiritual detox, as the pain that they’d been stuffing and carrying for years and years finally surfaced and had been dealt with and as a result, they felt lightened, refreshed, and born again.


Celebrate the light

Whether you’re celebrating Christmas, Hanukkah, or Kwanza, you too can celebrate the Light that is within you in order to illuminate any darkness you may be contending with. You do not have to go into the holidays with a hampered spirit and come out the same way. Take this time as a sacred journey to face any pain or negative emotions that you’ve been stuffing and sit with them a minute. Acknowledge them and let them know you feel them, but then purpose to let them go. The rebirthing process is a letting go of the old and embracing the new and just as childbirth requires some pain, that pain is forgotten the moment that precious new baby makes its entrance into the world.

As such, as you look to your Light this holiday season and trust that the Light is well equipped to shine a bright light on your path, you can certainly give birth to a new you. Bear down and give birth to your new self that is healed and whole, full of radiant Light and Love, and ready to offer such to those around you.

Know that you are not alone this holiday season.

  • If you feel alone in the darkness, look for the light switch and turn it on.
  • As you’re making your way to that Light, offer gratitude for all the good in your life, as this will help you on your journey.
  • If you need, reach out for help. People do care about you.

Dark nights don’t last forever; the daylight comes at its designated time, so persevere and know that plenty of others have gone before you. They are now cheering you on and rooting for you to look to bust through the dark into the glorious Light show.
You can do it.


Cold, dark night? Turn on the light

As the dark and cold days of winter approach, many people take note that they are not only contending with the dark physical realm, but many also content with the cold, dark spiritual realm. They feel like they are blindly crawling through the darkness searching for the Light. They feel sad, lost, and maybe even hopeless. If this sounds like you, know that just as winter is but only for a season, so is the dark night of the soul. As you endure the season, learning valuable lessons that can only be learned in the dark, you come to the Light fully ready to embrace newness. You’re reborn, so to speak, and more grateful than ever to see the sunshine.


Happiness doesn’t have to be a fleeting emotion. Learn how to handle emotional fluctuations and increase your resiliency through film, music, storytelling, and movement: Lisa Cypers Kamen hosts Harvesting Happiness at the Art of Living Retreat Center from May 17th-19th, 2019.


Lisa Cypers Kamen is a lifestyle management consultant who explores the art and science of happiness in her work as a speaker, author, and happiness expert. Through her globally syndicated podcast, books, media appearances, and documentary film, Kamen has impaced millions of people around the world. Learn more at 


Interested in learning more about Ayurveda and the programs at the Art of Living Retreat Center? Check out our annual catalog here!


Yoga Retreat Catalog for NC

TAGS: emotional healing , holidays , light , Lisa Cypers Kamen , loneliness , Love , spirituality , unhappiness
Balancing Relationships - Art of Living Retreat Center

Exploring Wisdom: Finding Balance in Relationships

By Wah! & Dr. James Leary
October 10, 2018

Balancing Relationships - Art of Living Retreat Center


In this series, regular Art of Living Retreat Center presenters Wah! and Dr. James Leary answer your questions about life, love, and spirituality.

“How do I maintain balanced self-care time and together time within my relationship?”


James: Relationships are a lot of fun. People always say, “Wow! You guys have this dynamic thing that happens all the time!” People see all the good stuff, and none of the hard work. In any relationship, in order to have balance, you have to create it. There’s always a give and take. When we disagree or have something to work through, we’ll see one another and just exhale, just let it out, and breathe into it.


The balance comes from letting that other person have that moment, and not trying to control it, and getting to the point where you can breathe together. You have to allow yourself the ability to just exhale, and to disagree, and to say to yourself that it’s okay. And then have the intention to go further. To work through it, not away from it.


The spiritual part of the relationship is a must in my own personal belief. Having something like a common goal of spirituality is one of the best ways to balance your self-care with your relationship. It’s a beautiful thing.


Wah!: I like all of that. I would say that self-care is that time when you connect to yourself and to Source. It’s a process of regeneration, so when you’re taking care of yourself, you’re also in service to someone else. The time together should be celebratory. It should be fun. You should try new things together, and make plans that you can look forward to.


Sometimes when you spend too much time together there can be a sense of drag, and you feel like you can’t get any more out of your interaction. So spend time together and time apart! We’ll do our own thing and then we’ll come together for a meal, for instance. There should be a flow, a back-and-forth. There should be a rhythm of coming together and building something together, and then being apart and rejuvenating yourself, restoring so that when you come back together, you have more to bring to the table as an individual.


Wah! Wah! blends a seductive, Eastern-tinged spiritual sound with a unique mix of pop, world music, ambient electronica, hip hop, and reggae. She teaches women’s leadership trainings, sound healing workshops, yoga teacher trainings, and performs healing concerts in planetariums and theaters throughout the United States.


Dr. James Leary, DOM, DMQ, PhD, has been treating people successfully for 30 years. His Life Qi Renewal is a protocol for life activation which draws from many teachers and healing methods. Dr. Leary’s expertise has been utilized by healing therapists, professional athletes, and corporate executives all over the world.


Interested in learning more about Ayurveda and the programs at the Art of Living Retreat Center? Check out our annual catalog here!


Yoga Retreat Catalog for NC

TAGS: balance , Love , relationships , self love , self-care
Belly Love

The Practice: Belly Love

By Wendy Swanson
May 17, 2018

Belly Love


Our belly, my belly, your belly, women’s bellies, men’s bellies “should” be flat, flat, flat. I have met very few people that are not on a quest for a flatter abdomen. I, too, have striven for this perfection as the message I heard growing up from my misguided but well-intentioned mom was “you can never be too thin (or too blonde)”. I wonder, though, if in our quest for perfection we are sacrificing our wellbeing.


A strong core and firm abdominal muscles do indeed help stabilize our low back and lumbar spine. We do need strength in our body, and in particular in our abdomen, to hold ourselves upright and to move through our day with integrity.


The beauty of a Buddha belly

Belly LoveA strong belly does not necessarily equal a flat as a board, six pack belly. In the practice of Chinese Medicine, a healthy belly is one that actually has some softness that resembles a slightly rounded “Buddha belly”. The softness indicates that tension is not being stored in the abdomen and that the breath is freely moving through the belly, diaphragm and chest. I’ve noticed that when I feel most relaxed my breath moves and when I feel stressed my breath hangs out in my chest and is quite shallow. I could go on and on about body image and societal pressure to be thin, but today I want to offer a few tools to simply help us get to know our belly and possibly even love our belly AND let you know that a soft, slightly rounded belly is normal, healthy, and dare I say even beautiful.


Ways to love your belly

Abdominal massage is a great way to love your belly and has the added benefit to help with constipation. Rub your hands together to warm them before placing them at 12 o’clock above your belly button. Allow your fingers to sink into your belly but not too much that you feel pain. Move your hands around your belly button in a clockwise motion. You can use some coconut oil or sesame oil to help your hands move smoothly around your belly.

Sit or lie down and place your hands gently on top of your belly. See if you can bring your breath all the way to your belly enough so that you can visibly see the rise and fall of your hands.

Find movement that makes you feel great and beautiful. One of my favorite things is to put on music, turn up the volume and simply move and dance with no particular purpose and with no one watching. It helps me to feel free and connected to my body and my belly.

Practice speaking kindly to yourself. Write yourself a love note. Be kind to yourself.


Wendy Swanson, L.Ac, E-RYT 200, is a healer, transformational leader, yoga teacher and licensed acupuncturist. Wendy has been leading groups for over 15 years both domestically and internationally. She is an open hearted yoga instructor who is currently studying at Kripalu to obtain her 500 hour yoga certification. As a licensed acupuncturist for over ten years, Wendy’s strives to help people live a life filled with greater ease, joy, well-being and balance. Wendy owns Be Yoga & Wellness in Charlotte, NC.


Join Wendy at the Art of Living Retreat Center for The Art of Being You from June 15-17, the Joyful Yoga Conference from August 10-12, and Celebrate Being through Yoga from September 27-30.


Interested in learning more about Ayurveda and the programs at the Art of Living Retreat Center? Check out our annual catalog here!


Yoga Retreat Catalog for NC

TAGS: abdomen , belly , Body Image , Love , self-care , yoga
Art of Living Retreat Center - Get Organized

Exploring Wisdom: Loving Yourself by Getting Organized

By Margaret Paul
May 9, 2018

Art of Living Retreat Center - Get Organized


“Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone” – Pablo Picasso


Do you struggle with:

  • Procrastination
  • Clutter
  • Overwhelm
  • Disorganization
  • Being late
  • Guilt over not getting things done or not following through with commitments
  • Anxiety over things like taxes and bills being late

While some personality types have an easier time being organized than others, everyone has the capacity to learn to be organized and get important things done.


Why, then, do so many people have a problem with it?


It has to do with your intent.


Which part of you is in charge of time and organization?

Do you have a part of you that tells you what you HAVE to get done, and another part of you that goes into resistance? If you identify with this, then the part of you in charge of your time and organization is your wounded self, and your intent is to control and avoid being controlled.


One part of your wounded self tells you what you have to do – likely in a judgmental, harsh, critical, parental voice (does this sound like your mother or father or another caregiver?), while another, perhaps younger aspect of your wounded self goes into resistance to being controlled. An inner power struggle ensues, essentially immobilizing you. The critical voice might get more critical and the resistant aspect, who is determined not to be controlled – even if it’s by yourself and even if what the critical part says to do is in your highest good – digs in his or her heels.


As long as your intent is to control and not be controlled, you will be stuck in the resistance of your wounded self.


Shifting your intent

Our intent is the essence of our free will. At any given moment you can choose the intent to control and not be controlled – stuck in the inner power struggle – or you can change your mind and decide that loving yourself and learning about what is loving to you and others is your primary intent. And that determines everything, because all your behavior follows from your intent.


When you shift from the intent to control and resist being controlled, into the intent to learn about loving yourself, and you open to learning with your higher self about what actions are in your highest good, then your loving adult is in charge rather than your wounded self.


The loving adult doesn’t procrastinate, doesn’t clutter, is organized, is on time, keeps commitments and gets done what needs to be done. When we are operating as a spiritually connected loving adult, it’s easy to be organized. It’s not about exerting will power – it’s about allowing Spirit to flow through us, giving us the guidance and energy to take loving care of ourselves.


Putting your loving adult in charge relieves stress

Just as actual children feel safe when their parents are reliable and do what they say they will do, our inner child feels safe when we do what we commit to doing for ourselves and for others. If you say you will be on time but you are late, your inner child feels anxious and unsafe. If you say you will get your taxes done on time and you don’t, your inner child feels stressed. If you say you will get up early and exercise and you don’t, your inner child may feel depressed.


Inner peace and a sense of safety come from operating as a trustworthy, organized and reliable loving adult. When loving yourself is more important to you then trying to have control over getting yourself to do things ‘right’ and then going into resistance to being controlled, you will start to feel much more inner peace and safety.


Since you are in charge of your intent, you can make this shift any time you want!


Dr. Margaret Paul is a bestselling author and co-creator of the powerful Inner Bonding® self-healing process, and the related SelfQuest® self-healing online program – recommended by actress Lindsay Wagner and singer Alanis Morissette. She has appeared on numerous radio and television shows, including Oprah. Margaret holds a PhD in psychology, is a relationship expert, public speaker, consultant and artist. She has successfully worked with thousands and taught classes and seminars for over 50 years.


Join Margaret at the Art of Living Retreat Center from May 18th to 20th to heal the cycle of shame and self-abandonment, learn to love yourself, and move into a healthy pattern of decision making at her retreat, Inner Bonding.


This article is reposted from with permission from the author.


Interested in learning more about Ayurveda and the programs at the Art of Living Retreat Center? Check out our annual catalog here!


Yoga Retreat Catalog for NC

TAGS: control , healing , Love , organization , organized , peace , stress
Art of Living - Articles We Love February

Articles We Love: A Love-Filled February

By Paige Reist
February 14, 2018

Art of Living - Articles We Love February


Ah, love. It’s one of the most powerful forces in the world, and something we all crave at a cellular level. Connecting with others and feeling loved and cherished nourishes our soul and gives us purpose. But love is so much more than something that you receive from others. It’s something that you can actively put into the world, and something that you can use to heal and grow within yourself.


As much as we adore love in all forms, we think that self-love is perhaps one of the most important and revolutionary practices you can cultivate. Which is why our favourite articles this month focus on how to make the choice to love yourself.


The Beautiful Truth About What Happens When You Choose to Fall in Love With Yourself

Kelly Douglas for Thought Catalog

Kelly Douglas shares her thoughts on learning to loving herself, and how this journey has transformed her life from a painful existence full of self-deception to one that is brimming with light.

“Amid the thick fog of my self-deception, I could vaguely make out a glimmer of the truth. I chased that spark of unconditional self-love with a sense of reckless abandon, steadfastly determined to capture it and forever hold it close. The light slowly grew more powerful, stripping my soul of self-imposed deception and filling my heart with truth. As I basked in the warmth of self-love, I resolved to never again habitually deprive myself of the love I deserve. At long last, I discovered I am always enough, despite the feverishly conniving taunts of my mind attempting to convince me otherwise.”


4 Yoga Practices for Self Love

Samantha Lahonen for Sivana East

Yoga isn’t just a physical practice, but a mental and emotional one as well. Samantha Lahonen guides us through four transformative yoga poses that foster self-love.

“Sometimes, it doesn’t feel so easy to love yourself, yet having a negative self-image sets you up for illnesses such as anxiety and depression. You may notice that you put the needs of others before yourself; as the “people pleaser,” you often compare yourself to others, or you avoid certain situations or opportunities for fear of failure. This is where yoga comes in. Yoga puts you in a state of meditation, helping you to let go of the thoughts that whisper you are not good enough and keep you in a state of low self-esteem. Yoga replaces them with positive thoughts such as the feelings of strength, stability, and energy that come with practicing yoga.”


Radical Self-Love as a Spiritual Practice

Kelly Ann Matuskiewicz for Absolute Awareness
Kelly Ann Matuskiewicz shares her thoughts on self-love as a spiritual practice, and how she incorporated self-love techniques into her own life to bring forth a more meaningful, fulfilling way of existing in the world.

“When I started to practice radical self love, my entire life experience shifted to more positive interactions and outcomes. I felt more confident, self assured, I trusted myself. Who and what I attracted into my life felt better and I was more in the flow. Unfortunately, not many of us know how to truly love ourselves. This is a key piece preventing us from manifesting our dreams and creating the lives we desire.”


Interested in learning more about Ayurveda and the programs at the Art of Living Retreat Center? Check out our annual catalog here!

Yoga Retreat Catalog for NC

TAGS: art of living , art of living retreat center , healing , Love , self love , wellness , wisdom , yoga

Learn more about our 2018 retreats and offerings!


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