I have often been confused by the expression “Warm Hands – Warm Hearts” —
Mainly because it seems that no matter the weather, my fingers never feel as warm as my heart does! But, lately I’ve realized that the “warmth” may refer less to the temperature of our hands, and more to the quality of action we are taking with them.
With Valentine’s Day around the corner, and so much judgment around this particular celebration, I decided to do a little research… Turns out, that while this holiday was named for a little- known Saint, the trappings of Valentine’s Day – the love letters, confections, and courtship, were all contributions of poets. Specifically, Geoffrey Chaucer- the Father of poetry in the Middle Ages.
In Chaucer’s romantic heart (or possibly as an excuse to sell his work?), he and his community composed “Valentines,” shared tokens of affection, and celebrated the pairing of doves at mid-Winter, as an excuse to partner them selves. This marked the beginning of the long spiral toward Hallmark and Hershey’s and other more trite expressions of love- tied with a red bow and marked “Your Valentine.”
And though many get fed up by the commerciality of the holiday, the majority of people I talk to love LOVE. So what is it all about it?
The wonderful psychotherapist, Dr. Keith Dewitt, says in this worth- watching video,
“The Magic of this world is that we Love Each other.”
And, I wonder… all these years obsessing over magical love as something we expect to feel, desiring love from others, desiring to be loved… they certainly haven’t all felt like “loving” experiences. Perhaps excitement, affection, care, appreciation, joy, neediness, attraction, attachment, or infatuation may all be more accurate descriptions of my past expectations of feeling “love”.
So, how can we tap into the magic of love without the expectation of feeling a certain way? How can we be the best Valentine to our selves and others?
This week, we have a special challenge: #LOVEISAVERB. We truly become lovers when we act with love- towards our community, towards our family, towards our friends, and towards our selves.
HERE ARE FIVE FLY WAYS TO PUT YOUR LOVE INTO ACTION!
ACT WITH LOVE IN COMMUNITY! What better way to act with love than to find a community that needs some?! There are so many kid-friendly volunteer opportunities, from visiting hospitals and nursing homes, to assisting at a family shelter or food bank. Here are two great links to finding a good spot near you: Network for Good & Volunteer Match! Be creative with how you give your time. It’s an extra bonus to actually MEET the people you are helping 🙂
2. Connect with Kids Worldwide
ACT WITH LOVE IN THE WORLD! There are so many wonderful organizations that connect us with people around the world. Social media, and the internet as a whole have made it quick and easy to expand our world view by developing relationships with people in various cultures, socio-economic situations, and political climates. I have witnessed so much learning in young people, when they reach out to those who are the same age in various countries. It’s incredible to watch the openness in which kids will find the places where they can connect and relate to their foreign friends. Here are some links to amazing organizations you may want to get involved with!
MORE THAN ME — A Girls School in Liberia (many have won battles with Ebola, poverty, and are beginning to learn and grow at their fantastic new school!)
PEN PALS! — Find a pen pal in a country of your choosing!
CLASSROOM CONNECTIONS –Have your school connect with a classroom in another country.
THE PERFECTION OF GIVING — Our FLY Friend Javier Perez Karam is making an amazing documentary about Giving, and has so many ideas and resources for you and your family to get involved. Watch the Trailer and help support his AMAZING project 🙂
3. Love Letter to You!
ACT WITH LOVE FOR YOURSELF! A great time to practice writing AND work on self- love! This is one of my favorite activities. “Write a letter to YOURSELF. You can write or draw out your dreams, your favorite features, the loving words you best use to describe YOU. Talk to yourself as if you were your best friend or as if you were someone you really admired. Decorate an envelope, and have your parents hide it somewhere you can forget about it. Mark the calendar for 1 year from TODAY. Have your parents “send” you this love letter from You! Perhaps you’ll write a new love letter to yourself after receiving all those good old feelings!
4. Selfless Celebrations
ACT WITH LOVE FOR ANOTHER! Practice a Selfless Celebration day! Take the time to honor one or more people in your life who you think are truly awesome. Find out their favorite things, and make the whole day about brightening and filling them with things they love to do, see, eat, and hear. Just for the hour or day that you’re celebrating, put aside what you want or need, and instead serve and cherish another. When you celebrate your friends and family, not only do you share in their happiness and joy, you get to connect with them and plant deep seeds of friendship and love.
5. Find Your Joy!
ACT WITH LOVE EVERY DAY! The absolute best way to be in love with your world, is to be DOING the things you love. Make a list of the things you love to do and DO THEM! The thoughts, words, and actions of your life are constantly played on repeat. So, set a great intention to love what you do. The more you do the things you love, the more often you will be in a loving state, and the love surrounding you through others, and through your self will grow and grow and grow. It CAN’T WAIT!
Every time you see Love in Action this week- take a photo! Post to Instagram or Facebook @flyyogaarts and hashtag #loveisaverb.
Let’s bring an entire community into the Action of Love!
Expand Your Heart – Embrace Others – Change the World!
With DEEPEST Love and Gratitude for You!