guest blog by: Zovig Garboushian
I was asked to do this blog post because of something I shared on Facebook as part of participating in the 40 Days to Personal Revolution (or 40 Days at the Den, as we called it) at Lyons Den. It was about a massive overhaul in my thinking about something I thought could never change—a love/hate, conditional relationship with my body. Here’s what I said:
GIRL TALK: As a result of doing so much yoga, my physical body is changing. I’ve lost weight and tightened up. The beauty of this is that I WASN’T EVEN TRYING.
I am proud to say that for the very first time in my 36.5 years, I have barely given thought to what my body is NOT and instead, TRULY BEEN LOVING what my body IS because of all it CAN DO:
• a 90-second wheel
• push-ups in wheel
• planks for days
• relentless dancers poses that go higher with each iteration
• high-plank/low-plank like nothin’, AND,
• enjoying the falling out
The voice has calmed. This b*tch is strong. Can I get a AMEN??
I ACTUALLY GOT IT. It finally clicked. The key to loving my body—not just on a ‘skinny’ day, not just in that one dress, not just when I’m wearing heels—is to USE IT, ALL THE TIME. And, I discovered this by doing yoga.
Listen up y’all: Yoga is hard. I know, because I do it almost every single day at the Den. But what I have witnessed each time I lay out that mat is that my body does exactly what I tell it to precisely as I ask. Contrary to my life-long internal dialogue, my body is not out to ruin my life. This knowledge is brilliant and life changing and revealed power I didn’t know I had.
In the Program, I have made some definite physical changes—lost a little weight, gained strength, lightness, more grace and flexibility. But that wasn’t the overhaul I shared about. Instead, I recognized an incredible “shift in vision” about my body—I saw it from an utterly new place and purpose.
OLD VISION: My body’s purpose was to impress others, prove my value, and gain praise.
NEW VISION: My body is a powerful machine that I control and it does whatever I request; it’s my tool to express myself as I choose (side note: unleashed self-expression was one of my goals in the 40 Days program).
Through yoga, I have developed a new body awareness that is positive, nurturing and grateful, compelling me to honor it, not tear it down. Before 40 Days, I liked my body when it was “good” and scolded it when it was “bad”. Now, I have a growing appreciation for how powerful my body is and I want to fortify that power by using it as much as I can, and doing yoga that pushes me to my limit and then double-dog dares me to go beyond it.
Sure, I have moments where my bra feels tight or my cellulite rears its dimply head, but they seem to roll over me like water and not stick like they used to. Yoga has created a ripple effect that extends beyond my physical being. It facilitates and feeds my awareness, fearlessness, and power, and it just happens that I look better naked. So I’m just going to keep showing up and doing the work and let the rest just fall into place.