5 Days To Increase Love in Your Life
Make your Valentine’s week more loving by connecting with yourself and others in a positive, respectful way. From Monday to Friday of Valentine’s Week put into practice these simple daily tasks and watch your heart embrace goodness and joy with appreciation and compassion. Get your family and friends involved too.
It’s easy to cultivate love in your life with the YIMS Valentine’s Week Tender Loving Care Challenge.
Tell each member of your family you love them. Look them in the eye and let them know the depth of your feelings. Write a note and slip it into their lunch bag. If they live far away, send them a quick e-mail, e-card or Facebook message. If you can, pick up the phone, Facetime or Skype them so they can see you and hear you as you express your love. Simple or profound, doesn’t matter. Just let your family know how much they mean to you.
Tell the people in your life what you admire about them. It could be your kids, spouse, co-workers, boss, teacher, neighbor, friend, or a stranger on the street. Express how much you like their natural style, how they take on challenges, their new haircut, a piece of jewelry, their smile, the kindness they show to others, etc. The best compliments are those which are specific and sincere. Compliments are a wonderful boost to anyone’s day so be generous.
Affirmations are a powerful way to access your sub-conscious. Share positive, encouraging, heart-felt messages with those important to you, including yourself. Write them on post-it notes, cards, homemade Valentine’s, paper plates, poster-board, Facebook messages, Twitter updates, lipstick on the mirror…everywhere and anywhere. Have fun, be creative. Some ideas to get the ball rolling: Believe in Yourself, Love with an open heart, You are Fabulous, Sweeter than Candy, Smile from deep inside, Share the joy, Abundance abounds. Photo from ChildLight Yoga Facebook Page.
Healing touch is a wonderful gift. Take a few moments and connect physically and emotionally with someone. You don’t need to be an expert, simply use confident strokes, gently giving attention to all areas, especially on hands: the fingers & fleshy part at the base of the thumb, and on feet: the toes & the tender areas of the arch. For specifics watch this video on how to give a fab foot massage.
Spend 5-10 minutes lying in savasana while focusing on opening your heart. Let go of old hurts. Clear your heart and mind of those things which are holding you back. Soften and let go. Allow space within your chest for the heart to rest comfortably and perform it’s proper function. Focus on your heart center, anahata chakra, and tap into your true heart’s desire. Fill your body with compassionate awareness and peace. Take this feeling of contentment and hope with you throughout your day and share it with others.
Leave a comment letting us know how the YIMS Valentine’s Week TLC Challenge went in your life. Have fun cultivating love!
More Yoga Valentine’s Day Ideas
For more yoga inspired ideas on celebrating Valentine’s Day visit
- Kids Valentine’s Day Yoga Class: a heart centered practice
- play Sending Joy: fill the the entire world with good intentions and watch it make our own life more loving
- Give Love: A Valentine’s Day Yoga Lesson Plan from OMazing Kids Yoga
- enjoy this Loving Kindness Meditation
- play Hearts Hide ‘n Seek: increase intuition & sensitivity
September 9th, 2011 is Fetal Alcohol Awareness Day. Next week I’ll be giving a workshop on how yoga can assist children with FASD (Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder). The information is especially valuable to parents, therapists and yoga instructors. Here are some of the highlights of this workshop.
What is Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder?
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder is an umbrella term for a spectrum of conditions that include fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS), fetal alcohol effects (FAE), alcohol-related neurodevelopmental disorder (ARND), and alcohol-related birth defects (ARBD). All of these are caused by maternal alcohol use during pregnancy. There is no cure for FASD. However early detection and proactive interventions have been found to be effective in improving the functioning and quality of life for children with FASD.
What are the symptoms of FASD?
There is a wide range of severity of symptoms with FAS from mild to severe. These are the most common symptoms.
- slow growth
- deformities of the joints, limbs and fingers (especially the 4th & 5th fingers)
- poor co-ordination
- vision and hearing problems
- learning disorders
- heart defects
- kidney problems
- short attention span, hyperactivity, poor impulse control, extreme nervousness, anxiety
Benefits of Yoga for FASD
Yoga is an effective adjunct therapy for FASD thanks to its personal adaptability. Due to the varying nature of symptoms of FASD individualization is essential. Spend time talking with parents, other care givers and most especially the child, getting to know them, their interests, the specifics of their diagnosis, etc. This is essential to creating a yoga routine tailored to meet their needs and abilities.
Yogic breathing techniques are an effective way of helping children with FASD increase awareness and reduce stress. Keep the exercises fun and of short duration, repeating often.
Children with FASD learn best in concrete, hands-on learning environments. Focus on basic yoga poses keeping instructions simple and specific with lots of activities. Repeat poses often. For example teach a few key poses, read a book which incorporates those poses and play a game with the poses. Use visual aids and music. Develop a routine and structure to each session to help with retention and predictability.
Social skills are acquired as children interact with the instructor, therapist and other children. Partner poses are a wonderful way to connect with others, develop verbal and non-verbal communication skills, and teach participants how to interact one with another. These are keys skills in building friendships which is often a challenge for children with FASD.
Yoga sessions for children with special needs should be positive, engaging and joyful. This is therapy with heart which considers the whole child as an amazing, incredible individual with much to offer. Be patient and trust that the skills you are teaching will assist the child throughout their life.
Yoga for Children with Special Needs
Also check out our extensive library of articles under the Special Needs category.
Shakta Khalsa has been a leading expert in yoga for children for the past 35 years. Founder of Radiant Child Yoga and author of Fly Like a Butterfly, Shakta strives to empower children to harness their natural wisdom and radiance and carry it with them to adulthood. Her teacher training courses have inspired thousands to share the benefits of yoga with young yogis. A veritable “Mother of Kids Yoga” Shakta is compassionate, understanding, genuine and lives with her heart wide open. Spending time with her will enlighten your day as she shares insights gained over her years of touching the hearts and lives of children around the world.
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