I do a lot of B work. I start a lot of books that I rush through. I make training plans that I sorta follow. I make menus and grocery lists that kinda happen. I buy a lot of offerings and workbooks from others in the coaching world. But I would usually give myself a B. I do things at my own speed. I make amendments. I listen to my own voice when I get uncomfortable. I follow through with things, but I do so my own way. I put emails in folders and work through them when I'm feeling stuck in my journaling or blogging. I follow-through, but I don't follow programs.

But then Curvy Beloved (from Anna and Vivienne) happened.

treefortwo And I would give myself an A+. Sincerely.

My reason for signing up was pretty logical and unemotional. I wanted to spend more time with yoga and with the fancy camera I got for Christmas. That was it. I joined this program entirely to build habits and skills in yoga and photography. I did not join this program to gain body acceptance or build my self-esteem or change the course of my life.

So one of the more automatic decisions of the past few years has had the greatest impact.

Screen shot 2014-06-15 at 7.51.46 PM I followed the program to the letter. I did not miss a single day. I looked so forward to the daily emails that I read them in bed as soon as the alarm went off the first time. I got up earlier in the mornings to allow for time to take and edit the picture if wanted to take a morning shot. I met my goal of spending time daily with yoga and photography.

But I gleaned so much more than that. I learned about not just body-acceptance, but body-love. I learned to be pay attention to my surroundings and look for opportunities to take photographs. I learned how to place my body into beautiful situations and feel beautiful.

family dwelling mountain

I learned how to just keep taking pictures until I had one that spoke to me. And that the one that spoke wasn't always the one where I looked prettiest or happiest or thinnest or had the best pose. I learned to talk about what I was doing - to security guards, to people that pulled over and asked if I needed help, to the boy that rode between me and the camera on his skateboard - in a way that was  unapologetic, sincere, and not minimizing.


I learned that I love yoga. I love practicing yoga. I love taking what I learn in yoga and generalizing it to the rest of my life. I learned that I am able to become a yoga teacher as I am, and I made plans and commitments to follow that dream.

My heart is full of feels that I just don't have the words for. This program changed me. At my core. I am genuinely so so sad that this course is over. But I am incredibly proud of the work that I did over the past month.

gravel tree

You can find the full collection of my CurvyBeloved self-portraits here. I will continue this daily series. Because it is habit. And because the benefits are glaring at me. And from me.

Enjoy your Monday, friends.