Love Yourself

loveIt is said that we have to love ourselves first in order to love somebody else and share this love. But what does that actually mean ‘to love yourself?’ And how does it show up in everyday life?


It is said that we have to love ourselves first in order to love somebody else and share this love. But what does that actually mean ‘to love yourself?’ And how does it show up in everyday life?

“In a society that profits from your self doubt, loving yourself is a rebellious act“

Unfortunately its true, we constantly get told how we have to look, and what we have to buy, do or achieve, in order to be more ‘lovable’, to be ‘better’. Through the fashion industry, magazines, movies and commercials we get the idea that we have to look a certain way or be a certain way. The higher, faster, younger, better society we live in, surrounds us all the time and the scary thing is commercials work on a subconscious level. We see hundreds of pictures everyday and whether we want that or not, these images set a certain `tone` of what we think we have to be.Its a form of brainwashing you could say. Scary but true. And that makes it all the more important to become aware of, because what we choose to let into our minds, becomes our reality.

In my opinion, modern society doesn’t support self love, our individual beauty or the belief that we are already whole and need nothing in order to be loved. Instead, it constantly tries to influence us to buy things we don’t need in order to fill up our self love tank.

Ultimately, we have to take responsibility ourselves, we have to do the work of cleansing our world view and checking our own beliefs. This is really what the paths of Yoga and Meditation are about – cleansing the mind. Yes its work and its uncomfortable, because the mind likes to lay back and hang out in old patterns, but its worth it, because on the other side of the fence lies freedom.

According to the Yoga Tradition, in our essence, we are love, and we are loved. Love is the nature of all living beings.

So what an insanity to think we need to add or change something about ourselves, or look a certain way in order to be loved.

A lot of people, including myself, underestimate our full potential, constantly being hard and unkind towards ourself. For many, it is a lifelong journey to develop an honest, compassionate and loving relationship with ourselves, like a real friendship. I, myself am on this journey right now and want to share with you some insights and practical steps I’ve found along the way.

9 – Steps to love yourself more:

1.    Awareness – the first step is to become more aware of our inner world. It starts with our thoughts. In the slower practices like meditation, moon practice and yin yoga we have the time to `observe` and witness our inner voices whilst being invited not to react to it .You are not your thoughts! This is a deep realization, one of the biggest and most liberating for me so far. All the voices in your head, all this talking, it is not you! Yes! Isn’t that great?! And you have the freedom to choose which voice in your head you want to listen to. So: Don’t believe everything you think – about yourself and others!

2.    Focus on the positive – Energy flows where our attention goes. This means wherever you put your attention, the energy will follow. If you put yourself or others down by criticizing and judging, negative energy will follow and so on. It’s pretty easy, if you want to feel good, focus on the good in your life, think positive. Focus on what you love about yourself. What to you love about your character? What are your special strengths? What makes you look unique? – Start to write a self-love list right now!

3. Be your own mum – and make your physical health a priority in your life. We all know it, when we are not healthy, nothing works. Take care of yourself means really looking after yourself like a caring mum would do, in a very practical way. Do you drink enough water during the day? Do you eat healthy and regularly? Take supplements that are good for you? Have a rain cape in your scooter? Do you exercise and move your body enough? Learning how to take care of yourself in a good way is one of the most important things in life. What are the basic needs that make yourself feel good, healthy and vibrant?

4.  Gratitude – shift your perspective form ´lack` to `abundance`. Realize deeply what a gift this life is and you are too. Just being alive and waking up every morning is a miracle. And you, exactly how you are, you are unique. You are the only YOU on this entire planet. Isn’t that freakin awesome?! So begin to see the special gifts and skills you came onto this earth with and honor that. Honor being alive and start to see the beauty in yourself and around you. Stop judging yourself for everything you are not and start loving yourself for everything you are.

5. Nourish your soul – a great teacher of mine once said to me „Wanda spend your money only on the things that really nourish you, that are good for your soul.“ That seems so obvious, but often we prioritize spending money on not very nourishing things. Do I really need this new t- shirt? Or would my money be better spent on a massage? Do I need this new nail liquor for $30 or is it better spend it on a singing class where I get the opportunity to express myself?! Ask yourself what really nourishes and nurtures your soul and make these things a priority in your life.

6. Bounderies! This is one many have to struggle with, especially people who like to have harmony and like to please others. I am one of those, I can tell you. But setting your boundaries means being able to express when we feel uncomfortable in any situation. Being able to say no when we need to.That can be laying in a massage room and we feel not good with the massage therapist or we meet somebody at a party who talks a lot, which we are not interested in. Learning how to express our needs in a friendly way is an important way to honor and respect ourselves. Even though others may not feel pleased our happy about it, we need to learn to care for ourselves first in order to be honest to ourselves and others.

7. Be compassionate – Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh says, “If you want others to be happy – be compassionate, If you want yourself to be happy – be compassionate.„ It sounds so simple, but for most of us its not easy to live that. Start being loving and compassionate with yourself today, take away the hardness, the punishing thoughts like ‘I have to do this, this and that from my to do list, otherwise..…’. Yes, these kinds of thoughts push health away from us and disallow moving slowly, being silent and truly resting. Allow yourself these moments of ‘doing nothing’ as this is essential for our happiness.

8. Laugh about yourself! Don’t take yourself too seriously. Laugh about your flaws, mistakes and your thoughts. Take it light and easy, things are usually not as important as they seem.

9. Affirmations – These are new positive beliefs about yourself, others and the world. Beliefs you can choose. You can tell yourself everyday out loud or put a note on your mirror or fridge.
Here are some examples for you:

I am loved and love is all around me
I am beautiful and whole
I am worthy of love
I am safe and supported wherever I go
I am abundant

You are invited to work with any affirmation that works for you. Create your own, write a list, start with the two most powerful words in the universe: I AM.

Same Same but Different

bearA few weeks ago I woke up from a bad dream in the middle of the night, still filled with the terrorizing fear from my dream, one of those dreams you think is real, and when you wake up it takes you a while to realize that it was just a dream, you know those?!


A few weeks ago I woke up from a bad dream in the middle of the night, still filled with the terrorizing fear from my dream, one of those dreams you think is real, and when you wake up it takes you a while to realize that it was just a dream, you know those?!

I dreamed of a huge, big, angry and wild grizzly bear. Me and my friends where stuck in a house and the grizzly bear tried with his power to come in, the world outside was burning, we were trapped, trying to put furniture in front of the doors and windows,it was just in matter of time before he would break through the door. I was in shock when I woke up, sweat on my forehead and feeling my heart beating, I walked outside the bedroom and tried to remind myself that it was just a dream. Responsible for this terrifying dream was, by the way, the movie The Revenent“ with Leo DiCaprio (who’s finally got an oscar, YESSS!), loved the movie but’s intense as the dream shows…However, dream analysis shows that our dreams often arise from the subconscious level or an underlining fear we are dealing with. This dream didn’t take much analyzing, it was obvious: The fear of dying, the fear of death.Living in Bali, in a foreign country, I am often confronted with fears, especially when the night gets dark. All the houses are more open than in the west, you hear strange and unfamiliar jungle noises and animals can get in more easily. One of my biggest fears are big spiders, (yes I am a typical girl) but if there is one thing i really don’t like something, then its big spiders. One of my admired masters, Osho says, “The core of every fear is the fear of death”. Maybe on the surface this is not always so obvious, but when we dig deeper we can see that the fear of water, the fear of heights and the fear of falling all originate with our fundamental fear of death. Fear of a spiders is the same, a primal fear that goes back to our ancestors that lived in caves and had to be aware of dangerous animals. Grizzly bears of course are far more dangerous than spiders especially when they are angry 😉

So I sat there in the dark, contemplating this uncomfortable fear of death. And yet, this is perhaps the only ultimate truth in the world, and one we have very little control over, or do we?! So isn’t it funny that we spend most of our lives trying to control everything around us to avoid facing it?!

I asked myself: How secure can we ever be? Even we have security guard on the door like here in bali? Even if you have 5 or more insurance policies like people have in Germany where I come from – An insurance for the household, for sickness, for stealing, for work and for getting older. What really guarantees that you will be more secure because of that? I love Western culture but I also think we are a fear based society, trying to secure ourselves, our beloved ones and our world as much as possible so that we don’t have to face the fact that really we have less control than we would like.

Nothing to judge about it, because we all want to live. But if we are honest, this security is a mental illusion, we arrange our life as comfortably as possible and wrap ourselves inside that bubble of security. The reality is, sorry to say, we are never safe, and at the same time we are totally safe.

Hah?! Why is that? Lets have a look at what Buddha and the yogic philosophy has to say abut that:

“The only permanent in life is change“ – The Buddha

We are very good at pushing away the uncomfortable thought of death and the reality of it. Most of the time in our everyday lives we forget about it, because its such a painful and cruel reality that this beautiful and fun ride is over one day. It’s sad, its really sad. And we wake up once in a while when we pass a graveyard or a funeral, or our neighbor or grandma dies. The reality is, each moment, even right now as you are reading this, hundreds or thousands of people, animals and plants are dying on this planet. Its is the natural process of life. Disney’s Lion King says it perfectly: Its the Circle of Life!

If you want a little colorful pick-me-up, watch here:

In the yogic philosophy and the teachings of the Buddha, all of us will pass away eventually as a part of the natural process of birth, old-age and death and that we should always keep in mind the impermanence of life, the life that we all cherish and wish to hold on to. However, the good news is, at least from the yogic and buddhist perspective, death is not the end of life! Yee-hoo!!!

In classical yoga philosophy, the soul and the body are separate entities, we are a soul inhabiting a body. The Tantric path, an offshoot of yoga philosophy, believes the soul and the universe are one. Who knows if that is true, but that’s what I love about the tantric path, it doesn’t ask whether a belief is true or not, or good or bad, it simply asks whether it serves you. Whether it makes life more fulfilling, gives you hope and fills you with joy. For me, it serves me to believe that there is a soul and that its infinite, immortal and that I am one with everything. Doesn’t that sound good?!

We are all one. Death is just as much a part of life as life is a part of death.

Same same but different 😉


wandaquoteSome people say you should never promise anything in life and that the reality is even if we do we can’t promise anything, cause life is too uncertain and we never know how life turns out or how things will change.


Some people say you should never promise anything in life and that the reality is even if we do we can’t promise anything, cause life is too uncertain and we never know how life turns out or how things will change.

Yes there is indeed an uncontrolled uncertainty in life, energy fly around us all the time, we live in a co – existence reality of different energys of people, thoughts, spirits… a pool of influences we most of the time can’t even capture.

But as far as our own energy field goes, our life, our body, our mind, the lense we want to look into the world, we can create and we can make choices of how we wanna live.

And we can learn through practices of the yoga tradition like asana meditation, pranayama and mantras how to gain more control over our thoughts and therefore our life.

As I am a loyal and romantic person with high values, I like to give a promise, and its not a promise. I give only to another person but to myself.

Integrity means for me a commitment I give to something, to a person, a work situation or a location. It is in my responsibility to choose this promise over and over again.

To keep our values and commitments higher than temporary desires, gains, or emotions, thats the meaning of integrity for me. That I stay committed to my promise no matter what. For me by giving a promise, I put myself under a “positive pressure“, by positive pressure I mean holding something bigger up, a higher vision of myself, contrary to my lower ego – self that may like to follow temporary desires and gets easily distracted. To keep and choose this promise over and over again thats integrity.

I gave my commitment as a yoga teacher to THE PRACTICE here ein Bali, to our Team and to my partner Octavio, but the most important a commitment to myself. As a yoga teacher I commit myself to authenticity, to honesty, an aware life, to a daily yoga practice, to study,to teach, to learn and to grow – a commitment to become the highest, virsion of myself.

I lived 30 years in Germany in Europe and moved recently to Bali, honestly I underestimated this step totally. I thought moving to paradise can’t be so challenging, right ?! I realize now what a big shift that is for me, moving to Asia, the other side of the world. I worked for over 10 year as a self – employee, always been my own boss, now committing to something so totally is also a new experience for me.

I have to admit it’s not always convenient or easy and it brings a lot of challenges up being a foreigner, a bullet when family and friends are far away and well known environment is wiped away. As I believe, in destiny and the magnetism of things that are meant to be and everything happens just in the right moment in time.

I know I am ready to take this adventure.

I am more willing than ever before to keep INTEGRITY and my COMMITMENT to my own word, a new chapter in my life, a big love and to make a dream become reality.

In deep graditude to THE PRACTICE and all the people who work here for giving me a new home, lots of challenges, a platform to practice, teach and grow everyday.

In LOVE and EXCITEMENT to all what is coming on this great adventure!

Lets ride this wave of integrity!

Yours Wanda