Guest Post By Seneca Beth Miller, Intimacy Coach, Sex Educator, and Founder of JustBodies
This spring I had the honor of bumping into the powerful and vibrant Lori Ann King—quite literally— at the Arizona Women’s Expo. It was a serendipitous encounter, as we have many overlapping passions, and her writing has become a huge inspiration to me. A line in Lori’s recent post about Finding Your Balance using the “wheels of wellness” ignited a fiery curiosity in me. In the sample list of spokes, one said: “Self-care and self-love (most neglected).”
First, I thought, “I relate.” Then it sparked an in depth conversation with my sweetheart, in which we pondered: What’s up with that Spoke of Self-Love?
Lack of clarity?
Perhaps one of reasons that self-love and self-care are neglected is lack of clarity: we often don’t understand what those tired and clichéd ideas truly mean for us as individuals. Discovering, understanding, and expressing what self-love and self-care look like can require dedication, time, attention, and intention. As an Intimacy Coach and Somatic Sex Educator, I’ve found that we don’t always give ourselves permission to acknowledge what we want and need. Even if we have a satisfying sex life and rich intimate connections, aspects of our desires and boundaries can go unacknowledged, let alone expressed.
With this in mind, I’d like to introduce you to the JustBodies’ “BAAAM” methodology:
Breathe. Acknowledge. Accept. Affirm. Move.
This practice is a way to begin unpacking the specifics of self-love. Marge Piercy says, “Attention is love…Bless whatever you can with eyes and hands and tongue. If you can’t bless it, get ready to make it new.” The keys to self-love and self care are the attention and intention. (Which are also keys to physical pleasure and erotic energy!)
Not neglected, just overlooked?
From this perspective, my sweetheart and I noticed that self-love could be both its own spoke and the essential foundation for ALL the spokes. In order for each of the other spokes to be in existence and well-tended, you could argue that self-love is already present and necessary!
I invite you try on this perspective and to BAAAM as you engage with the wheels.
You might discover the self-love throughout:
We find ourselves in nature: remember the breath that allowed us to know that time in nature is what we needed;
We find ourselves in meditation: we have already acknowledged our desire to sit;
We find ourselves enacting our vocation: honor that we have accepted this calling;
We find ourselves in relationship: we have affirmed our need for connection;
We find ourselves tending each spoke of our wheel: we have moved — we have taken action towards more balanced wellness.
Of course, experiencing self-love in all we do can be easier said than done. As I mentioned earlier, I relate to neglected self-love and self-care; I too grapple with unacknowledged wants and needs. This was especially true recently: I’ve spent the last year coming back into balance after a period of intense grief, loss, and serious shifts in my body. My journey required me to BAAAM, often, and I am grateful to say I feel like I’ve “got my sexy back.”
My journey returning to my body and rekindling my confidence inspired me to offer Self-Love Summer School for Women in Times of Change (#SLSS). #SLSS is a coaching program for women who have experience traumatic life changes and are ready to reclaim thier sexy. (If you relate and want to learn more, you can schedule an info call with me here: bit.ly/slss2018). #SLSS will help you strengthen the spoke of self-love in whatever form it takes!
Whether you join #SLSS, practice BAAAM, or find your own way to true your wheels of wellness, I wish us all a summer of abundance self love and celebrating our sexy!