“You are perfectly flawed” by Carolyn Riker

We found this brillant article on http://www.rebellesociety.com/2013/06/12/you-are-perfectly-flawed/   and want to share it with you:

“I prefer by far the warmth and softness to mere brilliancy and coldness. Some people remind me of sharp dazzling diamonds. Valuable but lifeless and loveless. Others, of the simplest field flowers, with hearts full of dew and with all the tints of celestial beauty reflected in their modest petals.” ~ Anaïs Nin, The Early Diary of Anaïs Nin.

Who are you? She peered closer at the distorted reflection. The mirror was a mirage. She poked the image and it rippled. Surprised and fascinated she touched the liquidity substance.

“You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.” ~ Max Ehrmann

She stepped a smidge deeper and peeled thin slivers of her psyche like a freshly plucked allium. Layers of delicate ripeness unfolded. Green, fresh, raw until she held a white bulb of vulnerability in her hand. It was her heart.

Her reflection changed into filaments; shape-shifting effortlessly like indigo clouds over an alabaster sea. She closed her eyes and quietly welcomed her breath. Her hand rested lightly on her chest.

Listen to your breath. Feel the rise and fall. Center yourself. Breathe through another set of images. Hold onto your inner walls. Plant your feet firmly into the earth. Scoop the energy vibrating nearby. Lift your arms high and release.

Her heart pulsated. It was tinged a lovely shade of pink. Joy. Love. Forgiveness. Each surfaced from inside.

Perfect is an illusion. Flawed is more accurate. You are perfectly flawed as you sip the essences of flowers, rose petals become your lips.

Nature doesn’t make mistakes. Chasing perfect – time, person, moment, class, book — will shortchange the moment of Now. Rest within your Sistine Chapel of architectural imagination. It will gladly assist in dismembering the negative fragments that blow around you like dandelion fluff.

Where are you going?

You are in the here and now. It is perfect even when juggling a disjointed dance of the unknown.

“In all chaos there is cosmos, in all disorder a secret order.” ~ Carl Jung

Your life, path, journey and voyage intermingle with heaven and hell. It isn’t a coincidence that joy dances with anguish. You will learn from both.

Filling the void of What if? When? Where? isn’t always the answer. Seeking answers from the outside creates a distraction to avoid knowing the responses from within.

Stop. Listen. Be.

Challenge yourself to listen to your own voice. It is like hearing your heart crack open into a volcano of awe. It swells and rises, the continuum eliminates the statistical bell curve of average. You are no longer tethered to the chains that lock your heart.

This is now.

The cosmic key is love of self which leads to loving others. Serendipitously, we seek love and dip our toes in waves of raw honey. Its sweetness is pure. There is definition in knowing and loving self. Letting go and accepting the generational lineage etched in our cells.

Rebirth. Renewal. Reincarnation.

“Don’t bend; don’t water it down; don’t try to make it logical; don’t edit your own soul according to the fashion. Rather, follow your most intense obsessions mercilessly.” ~ Franz Kafka

We are no longer scorched by the blemishes that embellish our uniqueness. We embrace the funneling of our revolutionary way. We stumble, fall, crash, disengage, reconnect, learn, regain, climb, catapult and soar. Rinse. Repeat. Stretch out and dry your solar plexus in the sunny spot of loving yourself.  It is warm and real. It is a reboot of our inner core of worthiness.

I am worth it. You are worth it. Surrender. Live. Breathe. Sing with wild joy. Dance and scare the hell out of everyone because you are in love with yourself. It’s a wellspring which won’t run dry.

“You’ve always had it my dear….You’ve always had the power.” ~ Glenda the Good Witch. Wizard of Oz.

Life is marvelously bittersweet, tragically incomprehensible and difficult to describe. My story gratefully intersects with yours as we meet on this path. My lineage of mistakes and mishaps are a gift. Each take on a new swirl; it’s all part of a greater plan.

It feels astonishing to lay back and laugh in the creases of the wind. I juxtapose the endorphins in a cataclysmic escape through a portal in time. It’s moments like these, carpe diem has a ménage à trois with the sides of self no longer dormant but awake.

I won’t be held back any longer. Try capturing a prism of love in a bottle? Impossible.

“I am rooted, but I flow.” ~ Virginia Woolf


mudralogo copy I found a nice article on how to love and respect your body when you do yoga. Here is the original (http://www.ekhartyoga.com/blog/yoga-and-your-body-image) and the re-post:

Body image is the way we perceive our bodies, the way we feel about our bodies, the way we think about our bodies. All of the above have an effect on how we treat our bodies.

When you are happy with your body, you will most likely treat your body with respect, and because of that also do your yoga practice with respect, enjoying doing it, able to be in the moment while practicing.

However, if you suffer from a voice in your head telling you you’re too thin, too fat, not strong enough, not muscular enough, too curvy, not curvy in the right places, not as beautiful or as flexible as the girl next to you, chances are your yoga practice will be a reflection of that body image.

The way you practice will most likely be that you push yourself too hard to get thinner, create more muscles, etcetera. Or your confidence will be so low you’re not looking for your edges at all, always staying well within the comfort zone, thus never challenging your body, also never discover your greatness, your abilities.

 What I would like for everybody is to be aware of your motivations, your voices, your body image. When you are aware of what drives you, then you can change.

Set an intention for yourself to make peace with your body, accept it the way it is, realize that our cultural body image is not realistic and crushes everybody’s self confidence. How you feel matters most, not what you think someone else might think, you’ll never win that game. The most beautiful people are suffering from the most terrible body images, because they believe they are totally dependent on other people’s opinions.

When you love and respect yourself, you’ll treat yourself well; your body will find its natural balance; and you will be beautiful, from the inside out.

With love,
Esther Ekhart


foot massageIn Leonardo da Vinci’s words the human foot is a masterpiece of engineering and a work of art. Take a good look at your feet. Your feet can tell a story. Your very own life story – and that in amazingly and astonishing detail and precision.

I would like to take you on an exploration. One way or another, we are all striving for alignment with soul’s purpose. For that equals happiness…simply being at the well of eternal life force, at ease. No pains, no hassles. Our body as it is, with all its seeming imperfections actually is the absolutely perfect and marvellous vehicle of the soul and all there is to life.

In many years of experience with massage, body and energy work, I observed with awe and great joy the beneficial effects of the loving touch on our whole wellbeing and especially the balancing and harmonising effects that foot massage can have on all our bodies’ systems and energy flow. Hands-on-healing is as natural as a mother holding her baby.

It is inspiring and fascinating to look at our own subtle energy bodies as well – there were our reality expands to the vibrational planes and colours beyond the matter of our physical body. It takes some practice, but it is great fun!

Respectful science acknowledges the interdependence of everything existing within the microcosm of each cell as much as within the macrocosm of the ’All’. As each cell of our body holds equally the complete blueprint of creation as such, so can our feet tell about the whole body and who we are. Organs, glands and other body parts are laid out in an exact map on the feet and on our hands as well.

Reflexology is a massage technique that allows for self-assessment of our state of wellbeing and energy on the very physical level – our base of being. It is a tool for aligning and unblocking energy flow and it works through mobilisation of the soft tissue structures by the use of hands. The reference points on the feet will respond sensitively to touch and pressure according to our condition and state of health.

As much as it is a beautifully grounding and relaxing exercise to do, to massage one’s own feet or a friends’, it will activate the body’s own innate intelligence of self healing in a natural way. Massaging boosts dopamine and serotonin levels while lowering cortisol, thereby increasing wellbeing. Relaxation results. More energy, yes!

With dissolving and releasing blockages on the physical level what comes through almost instantly is an increased activity of creative properties. Be it art, drama, dance, music, poetry, gardening, caring, loving or in which other intuitive way you choose to express it. It all speaks of healthily flowing, moving energy and makes for happy hearts too. Yes and yes again, brilliant!

Two sides to this, too – creativity comes naturally when we feed ourselves better, when we care and take time off for ourselves. It can clear channels of expression and communication and it rekindles positive feelings like joy, gratitude, kindness, passion and compassion. Oh yes!

Spontaneous artwork speaks from the soul, there were words wouldn’t be sufficient to express the depth of observation on our own life dynamics. It allows images to emerge that can guide us to a better understanding and it allows self-value and confidence to grow playfully and colourfully, beyond the limitations of our ego minds.

That’s where drama comes in as another creative tool. With all its aspects of speech, acting, mime and movement, drama is a light and fun filled way to expand on self-expression and reflection. To tap in to our capacity of free imagination through drama and story making, we can realise our best potential for creating our own story. Very well, very well, yes!

And then, when we come together in a group with each one’s individual gift as the persons we are, we create an even greater gift through sharing. Laughing together enhances the experience of confidence and joy.



I’m sitting in my garden, totally absorbed by its movement & busy-ness.  Little birds chatting, fluttering around, leaves dropping, soft wind brushing the trees, frogs croaking, so much activity in my little hub of awareness.

And then the word BOREDOM dropped into my mind.  Nature in its own intelligence just always has something to ‘do’.  How did it happen that we as humans came to be bored?  And then wipe the boredom away with may it be shopping, getting addicted to sport, watching TV, movies, playing video games, computer games, and of course the more toxic boredom eliminators like drugs, drinking and so I can go on and on with this list until I get bored with it…

How do we fill our time? How much of what we focus our time on actually inspires us?  How often do we do something that make us feel we have contributed our bit to this planet, we have done something good even for ourselves, in terms of personal growth?  Switch of that TV, step away from that computer, put on the music and dance, step outside and plant a tree, help someone.  Find the juice in yourself so that we as a whole can flood that boredom thing out. Just maybe we can also, like nature, fill this world with beauty.

How To Love Yourself

We found this wonderful article on David’s blog and want to share it with you as it highlights what is really important about loving yourself. http://www.raptitude.com/2009/03/the-one-ingredient-necessary-for-accepting-yourself/

Recently I was surfing an online forum, and I came across something that almost made me cry. Somebody had dug up an old, old post of mine and replied to it. Sometimes new users on a forum don’t look at the date on a old post, and they respond to it as if it were still relevant, so the post goes to the top of the first page in the list, even if it’s years old.

Those of you who read online forums have seen this happen many times, I’m sure, and so had I. But this one gave me an instant lump in the throat.

The post was called, “My Struggle.”

The desperate tone of the post stunned me. I couldn’t believe it was me.

In it, I had spilled my guts to everyone who would listen, over my dissatisfaction with myself and my life. I hated how I never finished anything, never got on a roll, never got good at what I wanted to be good at. I was not able to accept myself, because to accept myself meant that what I was doing (and failing to do) was fine.

Of course I wasn’t fine with it. I knew I was squandering my time and my talents, and it was killing me. I didn’t feel like I could get anywhere until I loved myself, and I didn’t feel like I could love myself until I got somewhere.

People advised me to decide to accept who I was, right now, and then I’d be free to live the life I want. I tried to do that. In fact, I did it a lot. I would get so worked up with enthusiasm about myself that I felt unstoppable.  But enthusiasm fades.  After a few days, the same patterns emerged again, and I was back to square one.  This went on for years.

I’ve seen countless others describe the same problem. You can’t just decide to suddenly feel good about yourself. It won’t work.

I can see now the mistake people make in trying to love themselves, it’s exactly what I did. They confuse self-love with how they feel about themselves. They want the warm, comfortable feeling of being loved. They are focused on receiving love from themselves, rather than giving it.

If You Have Trouble Loving Yourself

Know this:

Love is action.

Self-love is not how you feel about yourself. It’s what you do for yourself. You can only love yourself by doing, not thinking. Execute feats of love, feats of respect, for your own benefit.

First of all, worship your body. There is nothing on this earth you will ever do that does not require its cooperation.  Be nice to it. Get it into great shape. Don’t poison it, don’t abuse it, don’t neglect it. An unwillingness to worship your body will undermine any attempt to love yourself. Love it with your actions, or it won’t love you back. If you are rude to it, it will hinder you, embarrass you, and even kill you.

Learn. Endow yourself with skills, languages, abilities and arts. Developing skills is the most immediate and liberating way to shoot your self-esteem through the roof. What qualities would make you love or admire someone else? Kindness, humor, thoughtfulness, ability? Cultivate and improve those qualities.

A lot of people seem to think indulging or gratifying yourself is the same as loving yourself. Magazines and commercials say “Love yourself,” or “You’re worth it,” and then tell you to buy something or eat chocolate cake. Finding some reward and indulging in it is not love. Often it’s just abuse. Comforting yourself is not loving yourself. Beware the draw of comfort; seeking comfort is often a response to fear, not love. Don’t appease yourself, revere yourself.

Do work you love. Even if you make less money. Even if you disappoint others. Working a job for which you have no passion is betraying yourself, for eight hours a day. Nobody can love themselves while they subject themselves to forty hours of uninspiring work every week. If it isn’t practical to leave your current line of work just yet, start planning your escape now. That’s love. Do not resign a third of your life to someone else’s purpose. Dignity is worth any pay cut. If you don’t like your job, you are only getting better at being resentful.

The Respect Habit

The quality of your actions matters. Do everything with care. Pick up and put down objects as if you respect them. Don’t just drop yourself into a seat, sit down with purpose. Respect everything you buy, borrow, give away or dispose of.

Respect your time. Spend your time on things that put you into a better situation in life, on things that make you more capable, rather than on things that make you feel good for the moment. You will love yourself for doing this.

Respect other people.

Respect their skills and their virtues. Their flaws too. Respect their thoughts. Let them finish what they are saying, don’t interrupt, don’t be dismissive. Try to understand what they’re getting at. Let them be who they are. I am convinced that people are exactly as judgmental about themselves as they are about others. Find the value in others, or you will never see it in yourself. Forget the ways in which you would like other people to be different. Forgive them, and forgive yourself. Forgive yourself every time you wake up, and every time you go to bed. Forgive yourself every time you screw up.

Respect the world around you. The spectacles, the scenes, the details. Respect buildings and the people who built them. Respect businesses and the people who run them. Respect the trees. Respect the tiny, yellow-flowered weed that vehemently persists in thrusting itself up through the cracks in the sidewalk. It invests all its energy in growing, and it absolutely insists on being itself.

Love is picking up the dumbells the moment you start making excuses. Love is doing your scariest task first thing in the morning.

It’s not quitting early and treating yourself to a beer.  It’s not telling yourself it’s okay for your apartment to be a pigsty.

There is a choice in every moment, between acting out of love, or out of fear.  At any instant, you can stop and look at the moment, and it is clear which action is which.  You will make a habit out of choosing one or the other.

You won’t be able to have respect if you do not make a habit of recognizing value.  There is value in every person, object, place and moment, but you may miss it if you hold faults to be more important.

Find the endless value in the world around you, and it will be easy to find the endless value in yourself. Eventually you will no longer see a difference between the two.

The Love Yourself Weekend


 5 July –  7 July 2013

Inside every woman lies the ability to connect with that force within, where passion, creativity, intuition and power live side-by-side with your ageless wisdom. However sometimes it becomes difficult to keep the connection to this wonderful force open and to use its vitalizing power. Life happens, and sometimes we lose the connection and experience ourselves as separate from it.  During these time we can find ourselves  experiencing too much work, no work, relationships that have gone wrong, loneliness, the loss of a loved one or a combination thereof. You know what we mean, right? Ask yourself:

When in my life did I stop singing?

When in my life did I stop dancing?

Where in my life did I lose enchantment with my own life story?

Take a break and come join us in the beautiful surrounds of the Overberg where fynbos, bird song and clean air create a magical stage for celebrating being a woman, celebrating self love and simply being the joyous expression which is you.

We will offer you a time to dance to your own rhythm, relax and stretch body and mind with yoga, meet your own beautiful skin, touch the earth in creative expression and re-connect with your passion, your creativity, your power and your intuition. And we will have fun!

Take the first step, come as you are, travel the unknown (dirt) road into a magical and secluded valley, because: “To love oneself is the beginning of a life-long romance.” (Oscar Wilde)

What shall we do together?

All activities below are thoughtfully woven together to offer you a way through all aspects of yourself: to wake up your body, to kindle your creativity, to allow emotions, to feel sensations, face your fear, engage and still your mind.

Zensation: Enchanted movement, listening within. Nikki will guide you through various emotions with dance, just listen to the music, silence the mind and watch art in motion as you awaken to your own inner dancer, freeing mind, body and spirit.

Leli teaches a gentle Vinyasa Flow style of yoga, which is suitable for beginners and which can be spiced-up if wanted or needed. Morning classes start with meditation and pranayama (conscious breathing), evening classes end with meditation and pranayama. The themes of the classes will follow the rhythm of the weekend, emotional, sensual, perhaps powerful and earthy, sometimes light and airy, always having fun!

In Land Art nature is both canvas and material. You are encouraged to observe, listen, touch and feel. With hands as the only tools, resourcefulness is needed and only what is present may be used – rocks, sand, leaves, sticks, reflective water, the landscape.

Nature may be the starting point, but conscious intervention results in art, which is entirely cultural. And principles of art such as form, line, perspective, space, colour and texture are to be considered. The ephemeral creations remain where they have been made to change and erode under natural conditions. Often all that remains is a photograph.

The ceremony of the Vision Quest is one of the most universal and ancient means to find spiritual guidance and purpose. On this weekend we offer space for a relatively short but quite challenging time alone in nature, which will serve as an introduction into the idea of a vision quest.

Therapeutic Massage Therapy includes the assessment and evaluation of a person’s state of health and serves the treatment and prevention of all conditions of un-wellness.

Wellness   =   movement   =   energy

Through the mobilisation and relaxation of soft tissue structures and the balancing effects of the treatments, energy flow is restored, life forces are refreshed and wellbeing comes about. We will explore understanding and accepting our bodies through working with foot massage. Your feet can tell a story – your own story!

Drama is about creative fun and confident self-expression and playfully teaches problem-solving and clear communication. Laughing together enhances the experience of confidence and joy!

Where will we meet?

Fynbos Retreat is a sacred space for meditation and reflection, healing and transformation, rest and rejuvenation. www.fynbosretreat.com

Next workshop
Friday 5 July to Sunday 7 July 2013
R 2000 sharing   R 2250 single
book at loveyourselfweekend@gmail.com