Before this year even began, I knew it would consist of big changes and new environments. I've shared before that one of the biggest changes has been living apart from my twin. She moved seven hours away for school and is pursuing her dreams. This year has been a challenging one for me so far. Living far from Lisa was my first challenge. And I rode that pity-party rollercoaster ride for about a month before I realized that I had let myself go. I didn't like how I was feeling on the regular and needed to take things into my own hands. It was time for me to figure out how to take care of me, for me. I was used to taking care of me and Lisa — as a twin unit. But not for just me, myself, and I. Deep down, I realize now that I care more about her wellbeing than my own and I'm suffering for it. I think it's normal to forget that at any point, we all have the power to change our lives. I started with the basics. 

Coat, Top and Boots: Value Village. Skirt: Victoria Beckham x Target. Hoops: Forever 21. 

The basics — eating healthy and fresh foods, getting enough sleep, moving my body, resting, saying no when I need to, daily meditation, doing things that bring me joy, and leaning on others for support are incredibly important. When I moved, I somehow stopped doing many of these things. It was no wonder I wasn't feeling great. About two weeks ago, during meditation, I felt compelled to make a promise to myself. 

How many promises do we make to other people? How many times do we respond 'yes' or 'of course'? And, how often do we actually do the same for ourselves? 

My promise sounded like this: 

I promise to meditate everyday. 
To feed myself healthy, fresh foods
To move my body and sweat
To rest 
To speak my truth
To sleep enough

The words just came to me. I knew what I needed. We all do. But we're scared to make a promise to ourselves. We're scared to admit that we need to care for ourselves sometimes, which may require us to actually utter the word 'no' to others. 

This promise became my daily ritual. It is just a few sentences and there is no one holding me accountable except myself. I am enough to keep me going. 

Let. Me. Tell. Youuuu.

Since I've been speaking this promise, I haven't felt this good in months, since before my routine was thrown off. My mind feels clear. I have boundless energy. I am creative. I have tolerance. 

I will — and have — been taken off course since. But knowing that it's a possibility to feel that good again, is the biggest and best motivator for me to go back to that place. I know how important these basics are for me. And each basic motivates the next. When I eat healthy foods, I feel inspired to exercise. When I rest when I need to, I feel in control. When I meditate everyday, I create the space for me to make this promise to myself. The promise has opened my life. 

You know the age-old money saving tip of pay yourself first? When I meditate everyday, I make my promise. I promise myself before I make any promises to others. And that is how you cultivate self-love. 

PHOTOS BY LISA KIDD (during our first visit!)

I've been encouraging my yoga students to make a promise to themselves. And I say "you know what that promise is." 

So, what promise do you need to make to yourself? 

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