Dreamcatcher Meanings and Uses

Dreamcatcher Bear Spirit

Dream catchers have their origins in Native American tradition, but they have been made popular once again in recent years.  They have gained popularity as a spiritual tool within the New Age movement, and are also enjoyed by the mainstream population as art and home decoration.

 Traditional dream catchers feature willow hoops with a woven web usually made from red yarn or sinew. At the center of this web is a smaller, open web where no thread crosses.  At the bottom of the hoop are leather cords with dangling feathers attached.

Today, dream catchers are created with a variety of styles and designs.  They can feature single or multiple hoops and they vary in size from very small to extra large.  There are more natural, traditional looking designs and others are created with a variety of vibrant colors and added materials like beads, stones and other embelishments.  No matter what your style, you can find one that will fit your décor and personality.

The Legend of the Dreamcatcher

There are different versions of the dreamcatcher legend that vary by tribe, but the meaning behind them is fairly universal.  It is believed that the night is filled with both positive and negative dreams and spiritual influences.  When a dreamcatcher is hung above the head of the dreamer, the good dreams come through, while the bad dreams become hopelessly entangled until the light of the morning sun burns them away.  In some traditions, the good dreams make their way down the cords and feathers to the dreamer below; in others, the good dreams go straight through the small hole at the center of the web.

According to the original Chippewa legend, the dream catcher was a gift from spider to Nokomis, the grandmother.  For days, she sat and watched the spider meticulously spin its web.  One day, her grandson moved in to kill the spider, but she stopped him.  In gratitude for saving his life, the spider wove another web that glistened in the light of the moon.  He explained to the woman that each web will snare bad dreams, allowing only the good ones to come through the small hole at the center of the web.

 

How to Use a Dreamcatcher

 

Dreamcatcher Beaded Purple Feathers Iridescent Pink

Dreamcatchers are often used over the top of infants cribs and children’s beds to promote deep, restful sleep and positive dreams.  Babies and young children are often more prone to nightmares, and the dreamcatcher can help bring a sense of safety and security.

Anyone can use a dreamcatcher.  In order for it to work according to tradition; it should hang above the dreamers head at night and be in a location where the morning sun will hit the web to cleanse away any negative energies.

Some dreamcatchers have special stones and beading within the web that enhance its qualities. Certain gemstones can promote lucid dreams, prophetic dreams and even help draw healing energies.  Add a dreamcatcher to your sleeping area to filter dreams and promote higher wisdom and understanding.

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Feng Shui in the Office

office_feng_shui_tipsMany people are aware of the benefits of Feng Shui in the home. Feng Shui principles can help facilitate peaceful, harmonious energies, making the home more inviting and energizing. There are techniques for increasing prosperity, clearing negativity, and even improving relationships among family members.

Fortunately, Feng Shui can also provide many of the same benefits to the office environment, creating a relaxing and enjoyable atmosphere for work that facilitates productivity and attracts more prosperity and abundance.  We spend a great deal of time working; so it’s important to focus on making the workspace as functional and peaceful as possible.

Simple Tips to Feng Shui Your Office

The most important elements of Feng Shui in the office are proper lighting and air circulation. If natural light is unavailable, invest in full spectrum lighting which most closely emulates natural sunlight.   Air filters and the use of plants can help promote clean, healthy air and prevent the stagnation of energy.  Some good plants to use for the office are ficus, ferns, English ivy, bamboo, and palm plants.  All of them add beauty and remove various toxins from the air.

 Salt lamps are another great addition to the office.  They not only help remove pollutants from the air; they also neutralize excessive ions given off by computers and other office equipment.  Salt lamps look beautiful and create a soothing, serene glow when lit.  They are inexpensive and multipurpose.

Place your desk in a commanding position with good backing.  In most instances, this is the farthest corner from the door, facing it, but not directly across from it.  You should have a solid wall at your back and face the door for the best power positioning.

Clutter should be eliminated to facilitate the flow of chi.  This includes hiding things like computer and equipment cords.  File all paperwork away neatly and don’t allow things to pile up on the desk.

Make your workspace more vibrant with a strong punch of color to increase your productivity and personal energy.  This is particularly important in offices with little to no color or natural light.  You can paint one wall of your office a deep, vibrant color, or add a couple of pieces of wall art that will liven up the space.  Tapestries, posters, or even photographs that are enlarged and framed are all great ideas.

Your office décor should have a good balance of yin and yang (masculine and feminine) elements.  Include a good blend of soft and hard surfaces and light and dark colors.

If possible, place your computer in the North or West part of your office.  This is said to elevate creativity. Place it in the Southwest to generate more income if you have a home office.

A water feature like a table top fountain or small aquarium in the North area of your office is said to enhance career success and draw more business. A safe constructed of metal in the West promotes prosperity and financial security of the business.

There are stones and crystals that can be used to help attract wealth and prosperity.  Citrine, jade, pyrite, tiger’s eye and quartz are all great choices.  Use these stones in your décor to help energize your office space.

office-furniture-feng-shuiAny steps you take to improve the energy of your office space will be beneficial.  Improving the flow and feel of your workspace can help ease stress and improve your overall outlook.

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How to Attract Positive Energy Into Your Life

966151_10152254640009297_823952881_oPositive energies are the key to success, joy and peace in life.  While no one can realistically feel blissful 100% of the time; with effort, everyone can get to a place where they feel deeply enriched by life and peaceful at their core regardless of what is going on around them.  There are several ways to attract and enhance more positivity in life; some you can do immediately starting right now.

The most important thing to remember is that being positive and healthy requires a focus on whole being wellness.  All of our “bodies” directly impact the others.  Body, mind, emotions and spirit are all intimately linked.  What we do to improve one area, will positively impact the other.  This is good news, it means every positive step you take is felt throughout your being.

Keeping this in mind, here are several simple things you can do immediately to improve the energy in your space and lift your spirits.

 

Ways to Raise Your Energetic Vibration Immediately

Practice mindfulness.  Even a few moments per day has been scientifically proven to relieve stress and enhance clarity of thought.  Close your eyes, and focus all of your attention on the present moment.  Feel where your clothing rests on your body, notice the rise and fall of your chest as you take a few deep breaths.  This simple practice gives your mind a respite, cleanses mental “noise” and leaves you feeling refreshed and uplifted.

Feeling stressed? Take some time to walk barefoot in the grass or soak in a warm bath.  Indulge your sense of feeling by connecting with the elements. It is cleansing and grounding.  These simple acts relieve chaotic stress energies that can make you tired and irritable.

Exercise.  Go for a long walk, a jog, play a sport or turn on the music and dance! Physical exertion releases the feel good endorphins that erase stress, boost mental and physical health, and elevate the mood naturally.  If you regularly feel fatigued throughout the day; this is the time you most need exercise.

Surround yourself with color.  Different colors directly affect the mood in different ways.  Serene blues can help erase stress, while a punch of bright yellow can make you feel energized and boost creativity.  Learn a bit about color therapy and which colors are best to surround yourself with in different environments.  Hang a wall hanging or place decorative items in those colors where they are most needed.

Long-Term Solutions to Facilitate More Positive Energy

1425771_250348155114776_158225716_nFocus on self-acceptance and gratitude.  These two areas alone will enhance your life immensely.  Practice them daily.  Take time to appreciate the gift of you.  Like snowflakes, no two humans are exactly alike.  Instead of focusing on perceived limitations, direct your energy consciously towards focusing on your natural strengths and talents.  We all have them.

Express gratitude every day.  Don’t just say the words, let them penetrate and feel them deeply.  A profound sense of gratitude opens the mind and heart to more positive energies; this in turn naturally attracts new opportunities and better circumstances.  This simple daily habit has been shown to create miracles in life.  Open your heart and soul to this life-altering force.

Make yourself a priority.  Many people are raised to believe that taking time for our own joys and passions in life is a selfish act.  This line of thinking is backwards.  In fact, when we meet our own needs; we are better able to meet the needs of those who depend on us.  Self-neglect is not noble or necessary.  Value yourself enough to set a living example.

Recreate your space to facilitate positive energy flow.  Create functional spaces at home and work that are comfortable, work well and are free from clutter.  Organization leads to efficiency, which in turn frees up more time and energy to invest in things that bring joy.

Be active every single day.  Turn the TV off and move your body.  Plant a garden, go for walks, play active games with the family and do things that make you an active participant in your life instead of a passive observer.  Most people don’t pass from this Earth wishing they had watched more television or played more video games – they regret not spending more time with loved ones or doing things they dreamed of.  Be active in your life every single day – don’t let it pass you by.

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Spring Equinox and Renewed Energies

Spring BudMarch 20 marks the 2014 Vernal (Spring) equinox.  During the equinox, day and night are both equal once again as the days begin to get longer.  At this time, the Earth begins to change in preparation for the coming growing season.

The ground warms and new signs of life begin to emerge from the once frozen landscape.  Buds start to form on the trees, Robins and other birds of Spring begin to appear. As soon as the ground thaws, brilliant yellow daffodils and other early Spring flowers start to emerge.

This is a season of joy and excitement.  As the Earth prepares to welcome a cycle of abundance there is a sense of enthusiasm; a renewed energy that warms the spirit, gives rise to new ideas, and makes people feel more motivated.

This is the time of year for starting seeds and preparing gardens for the coming growing season.  It is also a time of cleansing. On warm days, the windows are opened to let in sunlight and allow fresh air to flow in again.  Many people engage in Spring cleaning practices to freshen the home and clear it of clutter and stagnant energies.

spring cleanseSpring is a great time to focus on renewal, not only by cleaning the home and planning the garden, but through self-examination as well.  Are there things in your life that have been cast aside that need to be brought forward again?  Are there things that you need to clear away so that new opportunities can make their way to you?

As we leave behind the season of “death” and slumber and work towards the season of emergence and renewal; it’s a good time to look at what needs to be cleared away and what needs to be nurtured and brought forward.  Breathe new life into an old project or two if you have unfinished business that has been put off.

Spring is also a good time to focus on creativity and new beginnings.  In many traditions, Spring involves celebrations of fertility and abundance.  Take time for creative expression, bring new ideas out into the light of day and help them blossom.  Let the spirit of renewal build your enthusiasm.

There’s no season quite like Spring.  Let the spirit of new life give you the momentum to enhance and energize your home and sacred space.  Take time to focus on new opportunities, developing new habits and welcoming fresh starts.

Throughout history, many cultures have honored the seasons and cycles of the Sun as a representation of life and spiritual growth.  As you take time to focus on your present journey; you also honor the wisdom of the past that has brought us to now.

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Celtic Products and Celebrations

There are many ancient Celtic festivals and traditions.  Although many of the customs have changed, the roots of the traditions lie in ancient Celtic history.  Samhain is a great example – once a celebration of the harvest and a time used to pay reverence to the dead, the modern “Halloween” takes some of it’s customs from the original festival.

Children going door to door was done even in ancient times. Back then, the children would offer prayers for the deceased in exchange for sweet cakes.  In many Pagan circles, Samhain is still considered one of the most sacred of yearly celebrations. A time to give thanks for the bountiful harvest and prepare for the winter months.

Here is a list of Celtic celebrations and their meanings.

 

Ostara

This Spring celebration has a traditional date of March 21.  It marks the Vernal equinox, where night and day are equal.  It is held on the first day of Spring and honors the time of planting and rebirth.  This is the holiday that eventually evolved into Easter.  Ostara is a time of preparing for the growing season ahead and for praying for an abundant crop.

 

Beltane

This celebration is on or around May 1st and marks the half-way point between the Vernal equinox and Summer solstice.  It is the exact opposite day of Samhain.  Known as the “fire festival”, in ancient times, fires were built and people walked between them as a rite of purification. The word Beltane means “bright fire”.  This is the holiday that evolved into May day.  Celebrations with ribbons and candles are used to pray for growth.

 

Litha

Litha is the Summer solstice. It occurs in late June and marks the longest day of the year.  It is a time to celebrate the Sun and give thanks.  It is also traditional to gather herbs around this time as they are considered the most potent.

 

Lammas

This festival has a traditional date around August 1st. It marks the halfway point between Summer solstice and the Fall equinox.  It is the first harvest festival and honors the decline of summer and approach of the coming Winter months. It is a time to focus on release – letting go of anything that doesn’t serve you.

 

Mabon

This festival happens in late September during the Autumn equinox, when once again, day and night are equal in length.  It celebrates the harvest and is a time for giving thanks.  During this festival, focus is placed on learning new things and repairing what is broken.

 

Samhain

This festival is held traditionally from October 31 – November 1st.  It is the largest of the Fall festivals and marks the beginning of the dark half of the year.  It is the Celtic New Year’s Eve and involves the “feast of the dead”, to honor one’s ancestors who have passed. Ceremonies involve the lighting of fires for purification rituals and leaving offerings for passing spirits.  This is the festival that evolved into All Souls Day, Halloween and the Day of the Dead.

Yule

The traditional timing of this festival is on our around December 21st. It is what eventually evolved into Christmas.  It marks the Winter solstice, the longest night of the year. It is a time to celebrate the return of light after a long period of darkness.  It is a celebration of renewal where prayers were offered by the ancients in the hope of light returning.  At this time, what was left of the previous season’s harvest would be shared and Yule logs would be lit to ensure a source of light for the dark winter days.

Imbolc

This festival occurs on or around February 2nd and marks the midpoint between the Winter solstice and Spring equinox. It is a time of purification with water and fire rituals.  It evolved into Groundhog day and Candlemas, the Christian holiday that marks 40 days after the Nativity.

Imbolc is a time for gathering more firewood and replenishing supplies for the rest of winter while preparing for Spring. In old traditions, this was the day Cailleach, a Gaelic Goddess would emerge to gather firewood.  It was said if it was sunny, she could gather more wood so winter would be longer, but rain would signify a quick return to Spring.

You can honor these historic traditions also by incorporating Celtic designs into your décor.  Liven up any wall space with wall tapestries featuring beautiful Celtic knot designs or prayers.  The designs are vibrant and beautiful.

There are exquisite jewelry pieces that incorporate Celtic designs.  Celtic knots and triquetra designs are intricate and detailed.  Our embossed earrings and pendants are unique and gorgeous.

 

Add some fun to your space with Faerie décor.  These sweet creatures have their origins in Celtic legends and lore.  Faeries are said to enhance our sense of self and give us the courage to live honestly and be who we are.

 

 

 

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Water Fountains in Feng Shui

Water Fountain Ganesha

Fountains bring the energy of water, which is said in Feng Shui to be a symbol of prosperity and abundance.   Water features are also used to stimulate stagnant areas and get positive energy flowing.  Think of sitting by a waterfall, or listening to the sounds of a gently flowing stream.  Notice how just the thought of flowing water is instantly soothing?

 

Moving water facilitates good energy flow, which in turn naturally relieves stress and promotes a more harmonious atmosphere. Emotions are a lot like water, they carry certain energetic vibrations.  When they build up or become stagnant, they can become toxic and lead to anxiety and worry.  Like water, emotions need to flow freely for good health and well-being.  Water flowing from a fountain helps raise the emotional vibration of your favorite space by developing steady motion.

If you have ever spent any time near the ocean or any body of moving water, chances are you felt less stressed and were able to breathe better.  Simply a coincidence? Not at all.  Flowing water releases negative ions that attach themselves to toxins and neutralize them.  When you incorporate moving water fixtures in your home or office space, it has the same effect, helping to purify the air.

There are many types of fountains that can be used in Feng Shui, including freestanding, wall mounted,  and tabletop fountains.  You can even build an outdoor fountain in your garden area outdoors. The key is to find something you find visually appealing that has a quiet motor and pump so that you can hear the soothing sounds of the water flowing.

A good fountain will be sturdy and easy to clean and maintain. Feng shui fountains can be constructed out of a variety or materials and it should be easy to find one that complements your décor. For added positive energy, a fountain that depicts Buddha is often a popular choice.  Some fountains also have lighting features that make them even more appealing and soothing.

Fountain Placement

Fountains placed in the East are said to improve health and bring strong positive energy to the family.  Southeast is the direction that welcomes financial prosperity and draws wealth and abundance in all forms.  Place a fountain in the southeast corner of your office or home to improve business and bring new opportunities.  A fountain in the north is said to help with career aspirations and life goals.

Avoid placing fountains directly in the south as it can lead to opposing energies and create conflict.  If you can, place a fountain inside the front door facing one of the auspicious directions to guide the flow of positive chi throughout the residence.

Some Feng Shui experts advise against placing water features in bedrooms.  It is said that hearing water while sleeping can inadvertently encourage respiratory illness.  Instead, keep fountains in living areas, gardens and office spaces.

Fountains not only welcome positive energy and promote good health, they also add a touch of beauty and tranquility to any environment.

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Cleansing in Preparation for Spring

7e64ebbfca6c1c4fb72c852bcc3b85feSpring cleaning is a household ritual passed down through the generations. Long winters mean a lot of time stuck indoors with sealed doors and windows. As the first warm days of spring arrive, it is invigorating and refreshing to open the doors and windows and breathe in the fresh, Spring air. Cleaning and airing out the home brings a sense of freshness and renewal – like waking up after a long, deep sleep.

In much the same way we clean our homes to rid them of stagnant energy; it is important to also refuel the soul. The winter leads to the blues for many. Lack of sunlight and color can dampen one’s spirits and hinder ambition. On those first days of Spring, one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself body, mind and spirit is exposure to natural sunlight. Sit in the sun and allow it to soak in.

Did you know that sunlight is the body’s only 100% natural source of Vitamin D? It’s true, while you don’t want to overdo exposure to sun rays, a bit of daily sunlight ensures your body is getting what it needs. Vitamin D deficiency has been directly linked to depression as well as many health problems. When you feel rejuvenated by the sun, it’s for good reason! Not only does it clear away mental fog and emotional uneasiness, it provides vital nutrients essential for good physical health as well.

Once you’ve soaked up some much needed sunshine; take a few moments to contemplate the Spring and what it symbolizes. Spring is the season of renewal, where what was “dead” comes back to life. What areas of your life are in need of renewal? Is there something you have always wanted to accomplish that you have been putting off? Do you long for a fresh start? Take time to breathe new life into something that sparks your passion.

Spring cleaning provides a great opportunity to purge. Remove all that is unneeded in your life and simplify. Eliminating clutter in your home and workspace clears the mind and elevates your mood.

After cleaning your home; consider doing a spiritual cleansing as well. Spring is a great time to use a smudging ritual to remove any negative energy and facilitate the flow of positive new energy. This can be done throughout the house to improve the vibration of your living space. You may also want to consider doing a personal cleansing ritual to rejuvenate your spirit.  Salt baths and healing meditations are a great way to welcome the spirit of Spring.

Once your space is cleared and cleansed, consider adding back in a few elements that help keep the energy strong and positive. Feng Shui items can help energize your space and draw abundance.

Spring is a great time to focus on new opportunities and enhancing personal growth on all levels. Seeds planted now will come to fruition later, just like the annual harvest. Consider your long range goals and do what it takes to nurture them today, so that they can come to fruition tomorrow. Let the initial enthusiasm and warmth of Spring help build your momentum and determination to succeed.

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The Best Investment You Can Make

download When most people hear the word “investment” the mind is immediately pulled to money or financial strategies, but that in fact is not the way to ensure your best life.  Investment is defined as “an act of devoting time, effort, or energy to a particular undertaking with the expectation of a worthwhile result.

Every day, we are called upon to make investments.  We invest ourselves by giving our time, resources and energy in a variety of ways.  So, when we consider what our best long-term investments are, do they truly surround money and things? How many people do you believe say during their final moments – “Gee, I wish I would have spent more hours working and making money”.

It’s doubtful many would say that, but how many do you think look back and reflect, wishing they would have invested more time and energy where it really matters? How many do you think regret not valuing or expressing their appreciation for their loved ones enough?

When all is said and done; love is the best investment.  It is what gives depth, passion and purpose to life.  When we do what we love and surround ourselves with people who we adore, who also love and respect us, there is no greater joy in life.

Love means being fully present in the moment.  When you are deep within your heart center, there is no anger, fear or negativity that can have any power over you.  Many people meditate daily for precisely that reason.  It is a way to tap into a place of love and inner peace at will.  This calm center is a respite from the distractions of the world and a way to let go of anxiety, recharge and get back to what matters.

Yes, being financially stable and able to provide for one’s family is important, but when it becomes an all-consuming activity, it can rob you of joy – and time.  There needs to be balance in all areas of life, and spending time focusing on what matters is a true way to ensure that you are getting a great return on your investment.

Family time While things can provide fleeting moments of happiness, experiences are where true joy lies.  Take time to enjoy a new adventure with a loved one.  Invest in building fond memories that bring joy to others and make you smile whenever you look back on them.  These are the moments you will be remembered for one day, not what gadgets you bought or how many hours you worked.

At the end of the day – and the end of your days; the love you shared and received will matter far more than any other investment made.  Spend time every day investing in love.  Do things you enjoy that make your soul sing.  Take a few minutes to appreciate those around you who make life beautiful. These simple acts are investments that pay rich rewards immediately.
Love is the one asset that grows most when you give it away freely.

 

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The Heart Chakra – Your Center for Unconditional Love and Healing Transformation

During this month of love, it is a great time to focus on the heart in general.  The great masters have taught us that love, in all its forms, is the highest of vibrational energies. It is the ultimate attainment and most important concept for humans to know and understand.

When we experience true, unconditional love; it is the purest form of spiritual energy.  This is one of the reasons so many are drawn to babies and pets. When we see their images, we smile, because we recognize the innocence and purity of these beings, the unconditional love they impart and the fullest potential they embody.  We can easily see the spirit of the universe within them, and on some level, we too are reminded of our connection with our source.

As we go through life, at some point, we all experience sorrows and heartaches.  Many times, we feel deep emotional pain in our heart region. The experience literally feels like our heart is breaking. The heart chakra, located at the center of the chest, is where we experience blockages due to emotional pain and trauma.  It is also where we can, through practice, experience the purity and wholeness of unconditional love at will.

One of the best ways to overcome emotional blockages and bring about healing and transformation is to focus healing on the heart chakra directly. This can be done with energy work, meditation and other practices that release blocks and raise your vibrational energy.

Learning to love and value oneself is the most powerful step towards developing a healthy heart center.  As you heal and build up the heart chakra, emotional empowerment results, bringing strong feelings of inner peace, harmony and compassion towards self and others.

During healing meditations or energy sessions, it can be helpful to incorporate the colors green or pink, which represent the heart chakra. Stones that can assist in more rapid cleansing and healing include malachite and rose quartz.  Place these stones on your heart chakra as you meditate, or wear them as a pendant around your neck, near your heart.  Heart chakra meditations impart the emotional lessons of forgiveness, letting go, building trust and developing more compassion and empathy for self and others.

Rose Quartz Heart

Rose Quartz Heart

Some of the deeper emotional issues that are cleared through the heart chakra are separation, grief due to loss, abandonment and emotional abuse. As you work to heal the heart chakra, these issues will come forward to be released and cleared away.  It is important to have an outlet to express these feelings and let them flow.  Some find water features like fountains can be helpful for focusing on release.  The water represents emotions as they flow gently and freely.  It is important not to repress the emotions again, but to allow them to flow naturally like a stream.

In addition to emotional healing, working with the heart chakra can also help prevent and heal other physical ailments as well.  The heart chakra is associated not only with the heart and circulatory system, but also the lungs, breasts, upper back and shoulders.  If you are experiencing health problems in these areas, work with heart chakra may help ease your physical symptoms as well

Heart Chakra Singing Bowl

Heart Chakra Singing Bowl

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Why Self-Love is SO Important

February is the month for focusing on love.  Holiday’s like Valentine’s day tend to highlight the beauty and importance of romantic love, but the one concept that is missing from this holiday, and society in general, is the importance of self-love.

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 Why is this such an important topic?  Because self-love is the first and most important step in establishing long-lasting, healthy relationships with others who complement you and enrich your life.

Self-love is not an act of selfishness, in fact, it allows you to be fulfilled and in that state, you are better able to meet the needs of others.  We cannot give away what we don’t have within ourselves.  It is important to nurture and cultivate respect and love within, so that you can become a strong, healthy person who is able to attract strong, positive relationships of all kinds.

Here are the top 5 reasons that self-love is so important for a healthy life.

When you take the time to properly care for yourself, to nurture your own dreams and follow your passions, you become a strong, positive role model to those around you. Through your example; you give others permission to also follow their own inner light.

When you honor yourself from a place of higher awareness; you feel at peace. You can be alone, but not lonely.  This allows you to maintain a proper balance in relationships between distance and togetherness. This balance allows room for individual dreams and goals to flourish, while still enjoying the strong support of partnerships.

 

Self-love promotes good health on all levels.  When you take time to focus on your needs mentally, physically and spiritually you will achieve greater enthusiasm for life and stronger resilience in times of challenge.  When body, mind and spirit are all nurtured properly, life is richer and more rewarding.

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