You might know Toni Childs as an acclaimed singer, but she’s also a rock star at the self-love game. She’s been practicing yoga and meditation for 30 years and now running really inspiring gigs all across the globe, and this morning she came to little Old Bar! Where I live! Turns out her hubby grew up here. Yay us!
30-40 of us rolled out our yoga mats in the surf club not really knowing what was coming except for a bit of yoga, a bit of meditation, and a bit of her singing – awesome! As we lay there at the start she set the intention of the session of letting go. Thank you divine provenance, this happens to be exactly what I have been working on this week! Then she turned up the heat. She had us shedding those layers of protection we forgot we even put on to stop us from being hurt by others but actually that stop us from truly connecting with our heart and with others. She had us dancing and singing, hugging, pulling funny faces and making weird sounds, crying, high-fiving. Gently, voluntarily, if you wanted to. It turns out we all wanted to.
If you gave me that description before the event I would have stayed well away. Risk crying in public? Hell no leave me out of it. It’s way up there on the vulnerability scale isn’t it, that raw emotion, letting yourself be seen. Very foreign to our culture. And actually, very healing when you do it. That said, the tears may have welled but they didn’t quite drop today. The balm Toni was applying was a very powerful one, but it was to a wound that is already healing in me. Anyway, that’s all by the by. If you want the effect listen to her song ‘Because you’re beautiful’ and really take in the lyrics. Imagine her looking into your eyes and singing them to your soul, because actually she is.
What Toni showed me was what living in alignment with your heart looks like. She showed me that what I mentally knew to be true is actually the case – that when we have love for ourselves with total compassion and acceptance for every part of us, even ‘the wobbly bits’ as she said, and check any kind of arrogance at the door, that the love overflows right out of us and allows others to experience the same. I realised that you don’t have to be a singer running fabulous yoga/meditation workshop to do this either. I don’t have to be a coach or a speaker or a blogger or whatever to do this. I just be me. You be you. The real us, the person our heart yearns for us to be. With acceptance. With love. Then no matter what we are doing we won’t be able to help but to make the world a better place. I say ‘just’ but it’s actually one of the hardest things in the world to do I reckon, to be the true expression of oneself. But each time someone achieves it, it sets an example and it gives permission to others to do the same. That’s what I felt for myself today. So thank you Toni for being authentically, beautifully you, and for giving that blessing.
If you would like to be authentically, beautifully you but you don’t know where to start, then I would say meditate, because in the stillness we can start to hear the murmurings of our heart. For extra help this is also something we work on in my coaching programs. Light you up so you can light up the world.
If you would like to go to one of Toni’s workshops I can highly recommend them (obviously) and she has all the details here: http://www.becauseyourebeautiful.yoga/