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The week where I planted some positive intentions

Week 21: Monday 31st May - Sunday 6th June 2021

It is Monday morning and the sun is shining. I decide to start the day with a quick fifteen minute jog around the park behind my house.

Daily 15 minute morning and evening runs

This is something I've been doing quite a lot just recently. Instead of longer runs, I've been going on short morning runs at around 7.30am, often followed by another short 15 minute run around the park in the evening, at around 7.30pm.

The morning run is usually quite fast-paced. It wakes me up and gets my motivation going for the day ahead. The evening run is much slower, more focused on loosening up ready for a good night of sleep.

It seems to be working well, as I'm generally feeling energised in the daytime, and sleeping really well at night. On top of that, my weight almost invariably seems to drop down a bit when I step on the scales the next morning.

You may remember how I've been getting into yoga quite a lot just recently. And in particular how I've fallen in love with Yoga with Kassandra. I first talked about it in week 14 - the week where I did a 7 day core exercise challenge. I mentioned it again in week 18 - the week where I was really, really bad.

One of the reasons I love Yoga with Kassandra is that it made me realise how yoga is so much more than just a form of exercise. In fact, its less a form of exercise for me - and much more a form of meditation, personal growth and self discovery.

The power of positive affirmations

Kassandra often uses positive affirmations in her yin yoga videos and they are something that I have found to be so incredibly powerful and transformational over the last few months.

I have written in more detail about the power of positive affirmations, but for now positive affirmations are simply positive statements that you say about yourself, always in the first person, always in the present tense, and always as if they are true for you right now.

Positive affirmations are things such as, 'I can do whatever I set my mind to,'  'I have the courage to chase my dreams,' 'I love myself exactly as I am, right now.'

In the video below Kassandra talks about positive affirmations (from 18 minutes and 45 seconds in). In particular, she talks about the power of recording yourself saying your own affirmations and listening back to it. She talks about how it is so much more potent and powerful to hear your own voice stating these positive things, rather than just listening to someone else tell these things to you.

Over the last few months I have regularly been doing Kassandra's yin yoga with positive affirmations videos. I have also created my own recordings of myself saying positive affirmations. I listen to these recordings when I'm out driving, when I'm out walking and when I'm out jogging.

Since I started doing these things I have become happier. I have become more positive, and I have become so much kinder towards myself.

Positive affirmations really are incredibly powerful.

Intention setting

Another idea that Yoga with Kassandra has introduced me to is setting intentions. Often, her yoga videos are paired with setting intentions. This is usually setting an intention for the day ahead. It can also be setting more long-term intentions - for the week ahead, the month ahead, or perhaps even the year ahead.

Growing an intention setting plant

On the theme of intention setting, I recently came across a ritual where you set and grow your intentions through planting them - quite literally planting them - in a plant pot with some soil and seeds.

Regardless of whether you believe in the power of this ritual, it is definitely really really fun to do. It involves playing with fire - and anything that involves playing with fire is fun! I adapted the ideas in the video for my own needs but basically you do the following:

First, write down any negative thoughts and beliefs that are holding you back, things that you want to let go of, things that no longer serve you. For example you might write, "I let go of the need to control others..."

Next, write down any positive intentions that you want to set and grow. A positive intention could be a re-wording of a positive affirmation. For example, the positive affirmation 'I love myself exactly as I am, right now,' could become 'I intend to grow my love for myself.'

The next stage is the really fun part. You get to burn all of the negative thoughts and beliefs you wrote down, as a way of representing letting go of those ideas which no longer serve you and are holding you back.

Warning!

Burning things can be quite dangerous! Try not to catch fire to your house! I put my candle in a glass bowl as per the photo above on the right. Even so, I was a bit shocked at how quickly the paper caught alight! Maybe keep some emergency water close by, just in case!

Next, plant the new intentions that you wish to grow into your life. Scrunch up the pieces of paper with the intentions written on them. Bury them deep into the soil. Add the seeds to the soil and water them.

Finally, care for your plants daily. Water them and watch them grow, whilst visualising your intentions becoming true for you.

So much more than just a weight loss journey

So as you can see from all of the stuff I've talked about in this week's post, over the last few months my 'weight loss journey' has evolved to become about so much more than just weight loss.

I'm not only changing physically, I'm changing in terms of the way that I think and feel about myself. I'm also beginning to appreciate the link between the two: the more we care for ourselves physically, the easier it is to love and be kind to ourselves mentally. And the more we're able to love and be kind to ourselves, the more easy it becomes to love and be kind to everyone around us.

Thank you so much for reading this post!

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This week I have been eating...

Breakfast: Muesli with oat milk. One cup of black coffee.

Snack: A spoonful of grain free granola mix.

Lunch: Vegetable and Chickpea Tagine from cookfood.net.

Snack: A banana. One cup of tea with a dash of milk.

Dinner: Mindful Chef's sweet and sour turkey with egg fried rice.

Snack: A small bowl of muesli with oat milk.

Breakfast: Muesli with oat milk. Two or three cups of black coffee throughout the morning.

Snack: A bowl of plain greek yoghurt, with a chopped banana and two spoonfuls of grain free granola mix.

Lunch: Two poached eggs on a piece of brown toast.

Snack: An orange.

Dinner: Garlic chicken kiev with carrots, broccoli and potatoes.

Snack: A small bowl of muesli with oat milk.

Breakfast: Muesli with oat milk. Two or three cups of black coffee throughout the morning.

Snack: None today.

Lunch: Thai red chicken curry from cookfood.net.

Snack: A banana. One cup of tea with a dash of milk.

Dinner: Garlic chicken kiev with carrots, broccoli and potatoes.

Snack: A small bowl of muesli with oat milk.

Breakfast: Muesli with oat milk. One cup of black coffee.

Snack: A bowl of plain greek yoghurt, with a chopped banana and two spoonfuls of grain free granola mix.

Lunch: Mindful Chef's Mexican beef shakshuka with avocado salsa (one third of a two portion recipe).

Snack: An orange. One cup of tea with a dash of milk.

Dinner: Mindful Chef's spicy Mexican turkey, coconut and lime rice.

Snack: A small bowl of muesli with oat milk.

Breakfast: Muesli with oat milk. One cup of black coffee.

Snack: A banana.

Lunch: Mindful Chef's Mexican beef shakshuka with avocado salsa (one third of a two portion recipe).

Snack: One cup of tea with a dash of milk.

Dinner: Mindful Chef's spicy Mexican turkey, coconut and lime rice.

Snack: A small bowl of muesli with oat milk.

Breakfast: Muesli with oat milk. One cup of black coffee.

Snack: None today.

Lunch: Baked beans on buttered toast (brown granary bread).

Snack: None today.

Dinner: Chicken with salad, couscous, boiled eggs and new potatoes.

Snack: A small bowl of muesli with oat milk.

Breakfast: Muesli with oat milk. One cup of black coffee.

Snack: A banana and a spoonful of grain free granola mix.

Lunch: Mindful Chef's Mexican beef shakshuka with avocado salsa (one third of a two portion recipe).

Snack: Two cups of tea, each with a dash of milk.

Dinner: Mindful Chef's tamari-glazed pork and baked aubergine with rice.

Snack: A small bowl of muesli with oat milk.

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Thank you so much!

...for reading my blog!

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