We’re a day away from the one, single day dedicated to love. Although other holidays have love as a foundation for it, it isn’t quite as explicit or as challenging (for many), as Valentine’s Day.
But love shouldn’t be a one-day, between two people experience, but an energy expressed daily, always and many ways.
And because we believe this, we want it to begin with you: beginning with loving your complete, total self. The you, you that’s here and now and can physically absorb these things.
If being in love makes pain go away, protects your heart and even opens you up to more love, imagine what’ll happen when you’re in love with your biggest part of you.
This is our challenge and call to make LOVE an experience that you feel for yourself deeply; showering yourself physically, mentally and emotionally with the love you deserve. You can’t give love without understanding it first, that’s a given.
Of course, there’s a printable to help you with this love exercise.
To begin this challenge, mark in your calendars when you’re planning on beginning, you can switch around the days or go in Zodiac order. The goal is for each day to do an activity, do it great and let us know how it all works out.
Our guarantee, that you’ll be healthier and more full of love toward the end of it.
Day 1. Head and mind. This is the Aries area. The mind is one of our most precious organs. Our heads protect it. Our heads leads the way for us in the physical realm, allowing us to connect and intertwine with the world around us. Where is your head and mind right now? Massage your temples and scalp. Feel beneath your hair, around your ears down to the base of your neck. Feel the smoothness and fragility of your head, how sensitive it is to your touch. Feel grateful for it all.
To Do: Prayer walking is great to help you move, yet keep your thoughts in order. Walking is a form of exercise, great for the Aries kind, and praying provides the meditative angle you need.
Day 2. Neck and throat. This is the Taurus area. The neck and throat area governs our voices, allowing us to speak our truth. Often, people say it’s hard for them to hear themselves speak; it almost feels surreal to hear yourself speaking outside of you. Your voice is how the inner parts of you make themselves known (besides writing). Your voice is a tool, a powerful one at that; it gives you an opportunity to bring forth your inner truths. Give your voice the space it needs, talk aloud and talk often. Also, wear a nice necklace to boost your mood.
To Do: Sing, sing, sing. Let your voice soar to the skies, blessing the heavens and energies of above. Sing, sing your song.
Day 3. Arms and nervous system. This is the Gemini area. Our hands are such an underrated tool. We write with them and they help us learn. The relationship between our hands, nervous system and how we process the world is essential to our writing life. Research has shown that hand-eye coordination, our ability to use our hands and gaze to learn, is crucial in the early development stages of toddlers and children, laying “the neural groundwork for maximizing their potential.”
To Do: Create some home clay or purchase it, if you have to. You can also make homemade slime. Point is to use your hand muscles and eyes, tapping into your imagination and creating.
Day 4. Heart, spine and chest. This is the Leo area. Our hearts, our hearts… where do we begin when it comes to explaining the importance of this “organ” and how it leads us into our greatest selves. The heart is the pumping machine of the body, its responsible for the feeling aspects of ourselves (mostly because of it makes the body react when feeling love) and it’s this central aspect of us. The spine works to connect the body, while the chest protects the heart. Leo is ruled by the Sun and when you think of that solar piece and how our hearts and spine and chest work to keep the other planetary pieces of us going—it makes perfect sense. So love your heart, straighten up your back and feel the number of ribs lining your upper body.
To Do: Do affirmations with your breaths. Take deep breaths and say, “I am grateful for my heart,” while feeling your heartbeats and then exhale with a, “thank you, thank you, thank you…pump, pump, pump, pump.” As you exhale with the affirmation, tap your chest where your heartbeat is beating. Do this often—in the morning, sometime in the afternoon, evening and then before going to bed.
Day 5. Stomach. This is the Cancer area. Whether we realize it or not, we’re constantly feeding love to our bellies. Our gut, the food we feed it, the relationship this all has to the mind and our overall health, has been studied more in recent years. Things like stress and not eating healthy impact our moods, causing our guts to overproduce certain juices and hormones and affecting our day-to-day functions. Massage your stomach often. Rub it when you’re feeling anxiety, and if you have stomach craps or aches (during the monthly friend) put a warm compress on it vs. going for over-the-counter stuff.
To Do: Go all out on a nice dinner for yourself. You can either make it from scratch, with local or organic ingredients, or treat yourself to an elegant restaurant you’ve been eyeing. Taste and savor the food, each bite and try to detect the flavors are you chew.
Day 6. Skin. This is the Libra area. Your skin is the largest organ in your body. Having a daily cleaning routine, moisturizing routine and checking to make sure everything looks good. Our skin give off clues to how other parts of our bodies are going: dry when we’re not drinking enough water, oily when our diets are out of whack and even changing colors if an inner organ isn’t working right. Be grateful for this large, layered organ and the way it never takes a break. Always on, literally.
To Do: Count the scars, birthmarks and dents in your body. What stories do these tell about you and your life and body’s ability to heal? How much has your skin protected you in life?
Day 7. Hips, thighs and butt. This is the Sagittarius area. For this one, we’re going to push you a little, and ask that you exercise these parts of your body. Research shows that exercising the leg muscles actually helps in building new cells in the brain, responsible for maintaining maintaining nerve cell health. The research went on to review the impact of mobility and keeping active has on our neurological wellness.
To Do: Build muscle memory and teach your leg muscles to learn new tricks. Take the stairs, do squats—just use your legs (and push yourself to use your leg power) as much as possible.
Day 8. Knees and joints. Capricorn area. Knees and joints are the most underrated parts of the body, yet the bony parts doing the most work. Just ask anyone with autoimmune diseases and arthritis just how important these little guys are to the body. Joints, and often the knees, alert us when something’s amiss in the body, whether we have inflammation, weight gain, etc.
To Do: Review what’s in your vitamin cabinet and make sure you’ve got some vitamin D and C to help with your joint health. Talk to your doctor, of course, to create a body plan and ensure your body has the vitamins it needs (for your age range).
Day 9. Feet. This is the Pisces area. The feet, in acupuncture and massage therapists, is essential to keeping healthy. Your feet, experts say, signal possible issues with the nervous system, possible kidney disease and even concerns with the heart and circulation. Keeping an eye on them, caring for them when they’re tired and being appreciate of the miles they’ve accrued is your challenge for today.
To Do: Two, simple but oh-so-soothing words: foot bath. Add some Epsom salt, chamomile and mint tea and soak your feet for a few minutes.
Day 10. Share. Share what you’ve done and learned these past few days with those you love. Plus, dare them to take the 10-day to love challenge, too.