She touched on some Buddhist principles but it was a contemplation activity she had us participate in that stuck out the most too me. We all had to sit like we were going to meditate, with our eyes clothes but instead of meditating she prompted us to think of specific people in our lives. The first was to send love to someone we care about deeply. The second was to send love to someone in our life that really needs love and support. And the third was to send love to anyone else. It could be a friend, family member, neighbour, coworker or even someone you don't particularly like.
I have done this type of exercise before. Normally at the end of a yoga practice I will dedicate my practice to someone in my life and send love to them. By doing this every time I get on my mat I have been able to infuse love into my life no matter what happens to be going on. One of my favorite quotes (don't remember where I heard it) is "Put out into the world what you want the most". By me sending out love to people every single day I guarantee that there is always love in my life.
This is something I think everyone should do. I always get a warm feeling in my chest when I focus on sending love to someone in my life. I even do this with people that I don't get a long with or don't particularly care for. By sending love to these people I find you start to have more compassion for them. Instead of criticizing them or building stories about them in your head you start to understand them more and cultivate positive energy in the relationship you have with them. There is one person in particular that I have been sending a lot of love to over the past few months. Her and I used to be good friends until a year and a half ago when we had a falling out. Words were said, feelings were hurt, trust was betrayed. The usual story. And even though I tried to repair the friendship, it has stayed shattered in tiny pieces since then. I have accepted that we will never be friends again but I still hope for the best for her and regularly send love and positivity her way. It has been one of the best learning experiences I have ever had and I highly recommend trying to send love to someone you have had a falling out with.
So to turn Valentine's Day on it's head I'm going to spend it with my soul mates and send love to the non-romantic relationships I have in my life. I'm going for dinner and then to a "boy movie" with two of my closest girlfriends. These girls have been the foundation in my life for the past few years. Through good times and bad these women have always been there for me. That is what a soul mate is I think. Someone that, no matter what, will always have a tissue for you when you need to cry or a bottle of wine when you need to be distracted. No matter what romance comes and goes in our lives, we will forever be each others soul mates. To these two women, I love you with my whole heart. You are both strong, smart and fierce and I'm excited to be able to spend my Valentine's Day with you two.
This Valentine's Day take a moment or two to sit, breath and send love to someone or everyone in your life, not just your romantic partner.