Learn To Love Your Body

Note: This is a guest post by Anna Luiza Rech (@AnnaLuizaRTW). Anna Luiza is a doctor who gave up a conventional career path in Sao Paulo, Brazil, to travel the world, to write on and to promote health and mindfulness, and to help people keep doing such practices, especially while on the road. Check out her website Liveplenty.

When you look in the mirror, are you happy with what you see?

Just last week someone asked me that exact question. I replied, “Yes, I am!” He seemed a bit surprised and said, “You’re very lucky! I’m not.”

His reply got me thinking. This same person had stated that I’m no Miss World just the week before as he was wondering about my self confidence.

Don’t get me wrong: When I look in the mirror, I can definitely see that I am NOT the image of perfection and I don’t even get anywhere close to Miss World as far as looks go. I know where all of my imperfections are and what I would want to have instead if I had a choice.

But it doesn’t really bother me. I feel good, I know the effort it took me to get to this point (I used to be 30Lb heavier years ago), I’m healthy and I know my body responds to exercise. The more I look after my body, the better and better it’s likely to get., which means it tends to get better and better the more I look after it. Is there really something I should envy in others?

When I was 18, I used to weigh 30 Lb more. When I carry a backpack with that much weight these days, I realize how much 30 Lb actually is and how much my body must have suffered from carrying that much more of me.

At that time, I was not very confident in myself. I hadn’t quite figured out what to do with my life, had just dropped out of an Architecture course at university after only 6 months and really felt somewhat lost.

I used to eat a lot of sweets and junk food.

I remember what my mindset towards food was like. I used to think, “It’s not fair! I try and try and I still don’t loose any weight, I’m not eating that much!”

Now when I look back I can see what a distorted view I had back then! I was blaming my body for the extra weight instead of realizing that it was all a consequence of my own attitude towards it.

This is an important, or rather, an essential concept before we even start to think about fitness. You are not in a fight against your body when you work towards a healthier life style. Your body is all you have, to keep yourself alive in this world! If it’s not perfect as far as looks go, it doesn’t really matter, it’s your main instrument in life for getting anything you want (money will do you absolutely no good if your body is not healthy).

So, learn to love yourself!

I only managed to get fitter when I understood that there’s absolutely no point to “going on a diet”. That’s right! When someone says, like I used to do, “I’m going on a diet; it starts on Monday”, what they don’t realize is that they imply a sense of a temporary effort towards a result. So, once that result is achieved, you go back to your “normal” life style habits.

But it doesn’t work!

Change has to come from accepting that it is a lifetime commitment. It’s something you carry with yourself for your whole life! You commit to living a healthy lifestyle and then start to realize that the good things that help your body stay in shape are also generally the things that will keep it healthy. Such commitment and realization will increase your sense of self control. Yes, it would be pleasurable to eat that huge cake, and yes it’s alright to binge a little once in while, but you don’t need that everyday!

To love is to care; the more you care and look after your body the more you’ll love it and be proud of it. Learn to live with your flaws and most of all learn to see the good qualities in yourself. Not everybody has to look the same! People are beautiful in their uniqueness and the visual assets are surely not the most important part of anyone, right?

For me, what I think worked best towards accepting my flaws was to face the fact that some things will never change: my hair will always be wild, my hips will always be big, I won’t grow taller nor will I have more prominent cheek bones. Instead of being bothered by this and keep battling against it, I can actually make fun of myself nowadays! These are things that make me unique and, especially, my hair is actually a funny characteristic of mine. I now admit to people: I live my life and my hair lives its own and we try to get along as best we can!

A good way to increase your awareness of your good qualities is dancing and doing physical activities like yoga and pilates. These activities tend to make you pay more attention to your body and its reactions.

Meditation on breathing and other practices that increase mindfulness are also very helpful. They will keep you connected with yourself.

More often than not your own body can tell you what is good for you and what isn’t. Think about how you feel when you do these practices or eat different kinds of foods.

Pay attention to compliments and keep positive remarks in mind (not just about physical qualities but remarks on your good taste, good choices, determination, bravery, etc). Throw away the mean ones; mean people have no trustworthy opinions to share.

Go look in the mirror and forget the bits you don’t like. What is there that is yours only? What looks good? May be it’s your hair color, your teeth, your smile, the color or shape of your eyes, your curves, or your skin.

Focus and work on your good features and they’ll work much better towards improving the parts you don’t like as well.

Trust me, if you are capable of seeing this beauty in yourself, everyone else will see it too!

Do you have a story to share like Anna’s? What do you like about your body? How do you feel about your body, and more importantly – how do you feel your body? Share your thoughts and comments below. If you enjoyed the post, share it and talk about it with your friends, and make sure to visit Anna’s site Liveplenty!

Stop Feeling Sorry For Yourself, or Alternative Personal Development

Let’s explore the idea of having a great relationship with yourself further.

I believe that having a great relationship with yourself is one way of being authentic and being authentic helps you show up as who you are when you interact with others, and that’s one of the most attractive things you could do… or be.

I also believe that it’s more important to know who you are and to love yourself than being who you are.

Let me briefly recap: You are always being you even when you are pretending to be someone else or staying in your own comfort zone. When people tell you to be yourself, I believe what they are really trying to convey to you is to be authentic; knowing who you are and loving yourself, I believe, help you get in touch with your authentic self.

What I mean by being authentic here is something like being spontaneous, curious, fear free, inspired, excited, delightful and alive.

My aim in this post is to connect personal development with the act of knowing and loving yourself. To be more specific, I want to suggest that personal development sucks when you work on yourself with the scarcity mentality (a nice little surprise after promoting a package of personal development products, eh?), but I also want to suggest that there is an alternative way of approaching personal development.

My suggestion is to take it as a way of discovering your potentials and becoming who you want to be as well as a way of practising self love, instead of trying to look for problems in you and to fix these problems you think you have.

What I intend to refer to by the term ‘personal development’ here is broad: It’s pretty much anything that helps you become a better person. So, in addition to self-help/personal development books, courses and activities, I’m happy to include yoga, cooking, dancing and any other things if these activities help you become a better person or if you intend to become a better person through these activities. That is, I’m thinking of personal development as an attitude towards what you do rather than a specific set of activities.

You are free to disagree with me and I’d be happy if you could give me a better definition of personal development, but I hope what I wrote above clarifies what I’m talking about in this post.

If you are interested in creating and living a romantic life, I bet you are a kind of person who is motivated to become a better person. That’s great! I wonder how you’ve been working on yourself (tell me in the comment section!). Or perhaps you are planning to change yourself for the better by quitting smoking, taking a dance course, or learning to cook.

Let me first speak the words of caution about personal development.

Personal development sucks when you approach it from the scarcity mentality about who you are and what you are capable of doing.

Let me explain what I mean.

The scarcity mentality in question is about how you evaluate yourself or how you perceive yourself to be. In your perception, you are inadequate and have a lot of flaws. The main reason why you want to be a better person is because you feel you are incomplete and you want to get rid of your problems, which you can’t accept for some reason.

Let me guess why you feel this way – you compare yourself with others and you feel you are not as worthy as people around you for what seems to be missing from you. This story I’ve described may not fit you 100%, but if you can relate yourself to it to some degree, here’s what I say.

You are perfect just the way you are. Now, what I just said actually doesn’t make much sense when you feel you have problems. So, let me clarify it a bit more.

I can understand that you think you have problems, but even these problems you think you have are part of you. By being perfect, I don’t mean that you are a flawless being. You could see yourself with a number of flaws, especially when you evaluate yourself from someone else’s perspective – standards set by some other people.

What I mean is that you are a complete being that needs no fixing. Trust me, you are not a broken machine, but a beautiful human being.

You might be dissatisfied with who you are today, and that’s perfectly fine if that feeling comes from the desire to get closer to who you want to be rather than the urge to impress others.

I believe you don’t have to be completely happy with who you are in order to love yourself, provided that you still accept the parts of you that you don’t like.

You could sit down with yourself and politely ask yourself to do something about it. That way, you can be honest with yourself.

So, being dissatisfied with yourself is not a bad thing in every situation. What’s worse would be indifference towards yourself. If you’ve been neglecting your feelings, ideas, dreams, desires and so on, I believe that’s more problematic. I suppose I could write another post on that. Remember, curiosity plays an important role in love and romance.

When you look for problems in yourself and try to fix them, you’ll keep finding them and you end up spending your time and energy on getting rid of these perceived problems. You might feel like beating up yourself for not being able to completely eliminate your problems as well. Once you’ve gone into that pattern, you might have to deal with endless problems.

Your motivation might be to help yourself from these problems you think you have, but if you are the one who keeps pushing yourself into the pit of false problems, then you’ll keep falling into it. Let’s stop that.

Also, let’s stop comparing yourself with others and trying to be a better person in order to impress them. My favourite writer Julien Smith has written a fantastic post against trying to impress others; do read his post here. (It’s not just about that topic, but also about some other great insights. It’s a must read.)

By the way, it’s important to realise the fact that you cannot do x now doesn’t mean you have no talent or no potential in getting better at doing x. If you are a beginner in something, it’s natural that you suck at it. Try not to connect your beginner status with your value as a person or your potentials.

What’s important is to understand what you are doing wrong and what needs to be done to improve your skills, and to take action. If you keep practising, you’ll get better eventually. Enjoy the process and love the fact that you are discovering parts of you that you didn’t know before no matter how small your progress might be.

Now, let’s talk about an alternative approach to personal development: you can approach personal development as a way of discovering your potentials and becoming who you want to be as well as a way of practising self love.

Instead of beating up yourself, be curious and know what you can do as well as what you can’t do now.

Instead of trying to look for problems in you and to fix them, enjoy the process of working on yourself and learning more about who you are as well as who you could become.

Instead of being indifferent towards your authentic self, accept who you are today and be excited about the fact that you can get closer to the person you want to be if you keep practising.

You don’t need to add anything to yourself or to fix your perceived problems through your personal development endeavours. Instead, you can use personal development activities to make yourself feel alive and delighted. That way, you can get to know more about yourself and get in touch with your authentic self.

Keep loving yourself, because it gets better and better.

How To Get Personal Development Courses Worth $1087 for $97

Here’s a great opportunity I want to share with you.

Adam Baker and Karol Gajda put together 22 courses into one package. These courses are classified as personal development courses, so I believe you would be interested in some of these courses, if not all, given that you want to create and live a romantic life. I’ll tell you more about these courses shortly.

(Note: If you are new to this site… Hello! This site is about how to create and to live a romantic life on your own terms. The best place to start is here.)

If you get these courses separately, it will cost $1087, but with this package, you can get it for $97. $5 from each sale will be donated to the Kidney Foundation to support research and prevention of kidney disease.

Sounds interesting so far?

But perhaps this sounds too good to be true, right? $1087 for $97? Really? Well. Adam and Karol did this kind of special sales in the past – the last sale was for a package that collects 23 business courses. The retail price was $1057 and they sold the package for $97. I’m glad they did this business course sale and that was one of the best investments I made.

This new package on personal development contains great courses as well. I have come across and read some of them before. I’ve wanted to check out some of the courses included in the package. I’m familiar with many of the authors of these courses. So, from my point of view, if you are interested in what they have to offer, it is a great opportunity.

But, there’s one more thing about this package.

The sale lasts only for 72 hours. It goes from Monday, June 20, at noon (EST) to Thursday, June 23, at noon (EST). It’s strictly for 72 hours only. I hope you’ve had a chance to visit this page before the sale ends.

You can go to the website for this special sale from here.

Let me introduce 22 courses included in the package.


Focus by Leo Babauta ($35)

  • The full version of the book, including bonus chapters, in PDF, EPUB, and AZW
  • An email fast guide (PDF)
  • A decluttering quickstart guide (PDF)
  • A guide to changing habits
  • 3 Audio Interviews
  • 5 videos

Momentum Kickstarter Kit by Charlie Gilkey ($47)

  • Living the Good Life (PDF)
  • Email Triage (PDF)
  • Premium Planners Set

Reclaim Your Dreams by Jonathan Mead ($47)

  • Reclaim Your Dreams – “Everything Package” (70-page PDF)
  • “I’m Serious About Action” Worksheets (30-page PDF)

52 Weeks to Awesome by Pace & Kyeli ($52)

  • 52 emails, each with a tidbit to learn and a mission to accomplish
  • A 128-page workbook (PDF)
  • Pace & Kyeli’s best-kept secret to living an awesome life

5 Ingredients | 10 Minutes by Jules Clancy ($77)

  • 133 totally NEW 5-ingredients recipes
  • Colour photographs of every recipe (343 pages)
  • 50 videos

Rebel Fitness Guide by Steve Kamb ($37)

  • Rebel Fitness Guide (40-page PDF)
  • Rebel Diet Guide (35-page PDF)
  • Rebel Food Fighter (60-page PDF)
  • 6 Separate Workout Exercise Books

Fear-Crushing Travel Guide by Farnoosh Brock ($47)

  • Fear-Crushing Travel Guide (113-page PDF)
  • 7 Fear-Crushing Travel Worksheets
  • 10 Audio Interviews with experienced world travelers
  • Bonus: The Master Travel Preparation Tip Sheet

Overcoming the Fear of Uncertainty by Sean Ogle ($47)

  • Overcoming The Fear of Uncertainty Guide (15,000 words)
  • Using Mint.com to Change Your Life (7,000 words)
  • Ultimate Guide to Starting a Blog
  • 5 Interviews, including Chris Guillebeau and Pam Slim
  • Worksheets, review sheets, questions, answers, and a remote work agreement template

The Creativity Toolbox by Ali Luke & Thursday Bram ($47)

  • Mapping Your Project: The Big Picture and the Details (22-page PDF)
  • Game Plan: Spark to Business (36-page PDF)
  • Balancing Life and creativity (26-page PDF)
  • 7 interviews
  • Resource Directory
  • 65 Jump-leads for your creativity

Make Sh*t Happen by Jenny Blake ($47)

  • Make Sh*t Happen (80-page PDF)
  • Workbook of all exercises (Google Docs)

The Language Hacking Guide by Benny Lewis ($67)

  • Language Hacking Guide in PDF, ePub, Mobi, and printer-friendly
  • Full translationss of the guide in 23 different languages
  • Worksheets, also translated
  • Almost 3 hours of audio interviews
  • Lists of free resources for practicing any language

Sex, Love, Liberation by Ev’Yan Nasman ($47)

  • Sex, Love, Liberation: A manifesto for the bold at heart (61-page PDF)
  • Sex, Love, Liberation Workbook (29-page PDF)

Learn More, Study Less by Scott Young ($67)

  • Learn More, Study Less (200+-page PDF)
  • 6 bonus printable workheets

A Daring Adventure collection by Tim Brownson ($47)

  • How to be Rich and Happy (215-page PDF)
  • Don’t Ask Stupid Questions (94-page PDF)
  • Don’t Panic! A Practical Guide to Dealing with Fear, Anxiety, Panic & Public Speaking (45-page pdf)
  • 16 Ways to Destress Your Life (34-page pdf)

The Less Work, More Harmony Relationship Guide by Cara Stein ($47)

  • 25 PDf modules (96 pages, 38,000+ words)
  • Better Communication Workshop

Brilliantly Better Collection by Dragos Roua ($43)

  • Natural Productivity (156-page PDF)
  • 100 Ways to screw up your life (109-page PDF)
  • 100 Ways to improve your life (108-page PDF)
  • 30 Sentences for a millionaire mindset (96-page PDF)

How to Become an Advanced Early Riser by Steve Aitchenson ($37)

  • How to Become An Advanced Early Riser (66-page PDF)
  • Success Log to track your progress
  • 4 MP3 audio downloads
  • Quick start guides

Cheap Family Fun by Kim & Jason ($52)

  • 52 weekly emails of ideas for free or very cheap fun
  • 52 short, entertaining videos

The Art of Relaxed Productivity + The Power of Positivity by Henrik Edberg ($44)

  • The Art of Relaxed Productivity (98-page PDF)
  • The Power of Positivity (132-page PDF)
  • Quick Start To Relaxed Productivity Audio Guide (MP3) + 5 more audio files
  • The Ultimate Guide to Motivation
  • 2 Workbooks
  • Audio Transcripts

Discover Package by Barrie Davenport ($59)

  • Discover Your Passion (116-page PDF)
  • The Bold Living Guide (46-page PDF)
  • Coaching Works (10-page PDF)
  • Life 101 Master Course (9-page PDF)

Mind Control Method: How to Get What You Want by Karol Gajda ($47)

  • Mind Control Method (37-page PDF)
  • 5 MP3 audios

Sell Your Crap by Adam Baker ($47)

  • Sell Your Crap (67-page main guide PDF)
  • The Definitive Step-by-Step Guide to Selling Your Crap on eBay (171-page PDF)
  • The Definitive Step-by-Step Guide to Selling Your Crap on CraigsList (49-page PDF)
  • The Definitive Step-by-Step Guide to Selling Your Crap on Amazon (41-page PDF)
  • 10 Video Interviews with Anti-Clutter authors and bloggers, including Leo Babauta, Chris Guillebeau, and J.D. Roth


I’ve read Reclaim Your Dreams, Mind Control Method, and the free version of Focus. I got Reclaim Your Dreams through the last 72 hour only sale, Mind Control Method as a bonus for another course, and the free version of Focus from Leo Babauta’s site. These products are helpful in discovering your potentials.

I’m especially interested in the following courses.

  • 52 Weeks to Awesome by Pace&Kyeli ($52)
  • 5 Ingredients | 10 Minutes by Jules Clancy ($77)
  • Rebel Fitness Guide by Steve Kamb ($37)
  • Fear-Crushing Travel Guide by Farnoosh Brock ($47)
  • The Creativity Toolbox Ali Luke&Thursday Bram ($47)
  • The Language Hacking Guide by Benny Lewis ($67)
  • Sex, Love, Liberation Ev’Yan Nasman ($47)
  • The Less Work, More Harmony Relationship Guide by Cara Stein ($47)

If I bought them separately, it would be $421. So, even just for these courses I’m particularly interested in, I know I would get great values for $97.

Of course, it’s important to realize your life won’t change unless you take action: buying this package alone doesn’t make your life better, though you might get a moment of satisfaction. If you have no intention of taking action, I recommend you not to buy the package.

But if you are interested in some of the courses and you think you can benefit from them, I hope this turns out to be a great opportunity for you.

Check out the 72 hour sale from here or you can click the banner below as well.

(Disclosure: the links on this page to this sale’s website are affiliate links.)

Show Up As Who You Are

When you meet someone and you feel attracted to that person, what you need to do is, simply, to show up as who you are.

There is no need to hide your authentic self. There is no need to try to impress that person by telling him or her about your achievements (Hint: It’s not a job interview). There is no need to worry about messing up this opportunity to interact with that person you find attractive. There is no need to play a game.

Let me tell you why.

I can understand that when you want that person to like you, you might think it’s better to play it cool, or perhaps to try not to be awkward. But let’s face it, when you try to be cool – when you pretend to be someone who you are not, or try to be natural by forcing your awkwardness to go away, you are already messing things up.

Sometimes it might work, but if it does, you are deceiving that person by faking your personality. Let’s say that person ends up liking the cool mask you’ve put on. From that moment when you have that mask on, you need to keep the mask if you want that person to keep liking you – well, it’s not really you, but it’s your fake persona that this person likes. That sounds rather unfortunate, doesn’t it? Your intention was to get that person like you, but he or she doesn’t like who you really are (well, maybe it’s not that he or she dislikes who you really are, but your authentic self is still unknown to him or her).

But, who knows, he or she might like who you really are. By faking your personality, you’ve thrown away a chance to get to know that person and to build deep connections with him or her. Don’t let it happen. Be authentic from the beginning.

If your authentic personality doesn’t resonate with him or her, then that’s all, but it’s not the end of the world and you can still celebrate who this attractive person is and have fun interacting with that person.

After all, the decision as to whether he or she likes you and tags along with you on a romantic journey is up to him or her.

When you realize this simple thing, namely, that it’s his or her choice, you will understand that your best strategy is not about trying to trick others into liking you by impressing them, but presenting and sharing your authentic self. It’s not about chasing or being chased. It’s not about playing a game. What really matters is to share the gift of being your authentic self with others. If there is a variable you can control, then this is it. And by being authentic, it doesn’t mean being perfect.

When you show up as who you are, have courage to tell your authentic story that you really want to live and to tell.

Surely, what’s often expected by the question “what do you do?” is to tell how you earn money or to tell what your day job is, particularly in society the majority of the readers of this blog live in.

But, why should you tell your public story and get stuck in that conversation when you can tell your most authentic story? There’s no reason why, at least in a romantic context. You can be totally outrageous and say something like, “I’m keen on making the world more romantic” if that’s what you want to do. (Actually, it’s not that outrageous at all.)

What’s even better is to invite others to this romantic journey by asking what they are passionate about, what their big, wild dreams are, etc. There’s a good chance of you being perceived as a weird person, but if that’s what you are really curious about and want to talk about, why not bring these questions up as soon as possible? Even if you start a conversation by a small talk, you can always go for a big talk within a minute.

By the way, it helps to be aware of your own stories. When you tell your stories, what kind of stories is it? Stories that you were told by others, stories that you convince yourself to follow, or stories you really want to live and to tell? I’m planning to write more on these different kinds of stories sometime, but you can start thinking about these stories and be aware of your own stories now.

Remember, your life is your art and you are the writer of your story.

To show up as who you are is to live and to tell your authentic stories. Share these stories with amazing people you meet in your life and that’s a gift you can give to them.

Do You Have A Great Relationship With Yourself?

“To love oneself is the beginning of a life-long romance.”
Oscar Wilde

Hello from San Francisco.

I have been thinking about the importance of having a great relationship with one’s self and how it matters in creating and living a romantic life on your own terms.

Some people may have grown up in an wonderful environment where everyone around you was supportive and encouraging; most people, I bet, must have been let down more than once by people around them. Do you believe what they told you? If you do, it’s OK to throw away that belief. Realize that you don’t need to live that story told by other people… or even a story that you keep trying to convince yourself to follow. Your life is your art, and you are responsible for writing and living your own story.

If you want to make that story romantic, I believe you need to have a great relationship with yourself.

In fact, if you want to have great relationships with others, the same thing applies. World Domination Summit, which I attended last week, reminded me of that. The summit was extraordinary and I’m still in a dreamy state. I don’t plan to wake up, but instead, I plan to bring that dream into reality. It was that awesome.

One common theme I noticed in every keynote presentation of World Domination Summit was exactly this topic: your relationship with yourself. The reason why I noticed this theme was probably because I wanted to see it in every talk, and I may have been biased like that, but that’s not a problem, I hope.

(By the way, if you are curious about World Domination Summit and what it was like, there are a number of great write-ups out there. Here is a good place to start.)

But why do you need to have a great relationship with yourself? What does it mean to have a great relationship with yourself anyway? Let me explore these questions.

What does it mean to have a great relationship with yourself? What comes to my mind when I think of having a great relationship with yourself is the following.

  • Accepting who you are
  • Respecting yourself
  • Trusting yourself
  • Being curious about your potentials and possibilities
  • Taking care of yourself physically as well as mentally
  • Being comfortable with being who you are

These things could be summed up as: loving yourself.

Why do you need to have a great relationship with yourself? I kind of answered this question above; I think having a great relationship with yourself allows you to have great relationships with others.

I believe my life is my art and I believe your life is your art, too. You are making an art everyday by connecting with people, because what you share with them becomes stories, colours, sounds, textures and visions in your art… and their art. If you can have great relationships with others, your art and their art are more likely to be epic. I believe that’s how you make your life romantic, too. So, there you go.

When you have a great relationship with yourself – when you know how to love yourself, I believe you will know how to love others as well, because what you do when you love others is what you do to yourself when you love yourself. Also, it seems to me that being authentic, which is crucial in having great relationships with others, requires having a great relationship with yourself.

If you don’t know how to love yourself, I believe you’ll have a hard time loving other people. Are you afraid of loving or being loved? If you are, start taking care of yourself. That could change the way you relate to others.

What’s your relationship with yourself like? Do you listen to your inner voice? Are you honest with yourself? Do you take care of yourself? Do you believe in yourself no matter what? Are you aware of your potentials?

Let’s change the way you relate to yourself from today. You can start loving yourself (and if you already do, loving yourself more) from this moment.

Tell me and share with us your thoughts on having a great relationship with yourself! I’m not a guru or anything, but I’m here to start a conversation so we can learn from each other. It’s your turn!