Love starts within

Written by Lou Coles

Pleased to meet you, I’m Lou.

By day, I support humans to accept their humanness and in doing so allow
more self-love and self-care into their lives. (By the rest of the time, you may
know me as Kevin and Bodhi’s dog-mum!)

You know all those things that we try to avoid? Those imperfections, triggers,
niggles, habits and fears? The kind of stuff that traditionally we’ve found
hard to change and have often come to believe “I’m stuck with it, it’s just
part of being me”, “I’ve always been that way”, “It runs in my family”. All that
stuff that gets in the way of loving and accepting yourself, exactly as you
are, in each moment. THAT is the field on which I play and that is the human
condition that I love working with.

The mind-body connection methods I use acknowledge that these things are
not just thoughts and feelings to be put aside and ignored. They are actually
experienced and stored in your body until you find safe ways to process and
release them! For example, dogs ‘shaking it off’ after a stressful experience
and getting back to being calm and relaxed again is healthy.

If only us humans could be more like dogs!

Listening to your own body and connecting with, and acknowledging, your
own feelings without judgment is important in releasing that felt-sense
from your body and mind long term. It is this missing component that
has brought the ancient wisdom of body-based practices into the clinical
research spotlight with modalities such as Emotional Freedom Techniques
(acupressure tapping) providing extraordinarily high efficacy in anxiety,
depression and PTSD.

It is this leading edge of multidisciplinary research that I get nerdy and my
science mind gets to come out and play too. This dance between the science
of our physiology, neurobiology and behaviour and the less tangible and
more ephemeral emotions, thoughts and beliefs shows us where our own
understanding of the ‘how’ we are wired this way and ‘why’ we evolved to be
this way, helps us to have more compassion, understanding and acceptance of
ourselves and our foibles.

When you have more compassion, love and acceptance for yourself then that
is the foundation that you take into your relationships with others. How you
relate to world and people around you is informed by the filters through which
you see and interpret the world around you. Each time you become aware of
and remove one of those filters you get more clarity and life gets simpler and

As a baby and then a child we are like a sponge, learning about the world
around us, forming our view of what to expect of the world and our position
in it. Without even being aware of it we have taken on all sorts of beliefs
that seem like truths to us but may not be true for everyone. In our current
culture that promotes fear and scarcity and glorifies busy-ness there are
many opportunities to confront our limiting beliefs. Especially around ‘not
being enough’ or ‘not being deserving’ or worthy of happiness, health, love
or abundance. It is empowering to be able to stand back and notice these
internal patterns and external influences and choose which ones we want
more of in our lives and which ones we want less of.

Love is one of the positive emotions that is inherently pleasant to experience
and we naturally want more of but it so much more than that moment too.
Each moment of an elevated emotion such as love literally changes your mind
and physiology. In moments of love division drops away and your ability to
connect wholeheartedly and attune to the people around you opens up.

This doesn’t have to be a special feeling you reserve only for your romantic
partner or even the warm feelings you have for your family, children and close
friends. Love need not be exclusive, love can be experienced and recognised
in so many more moments than those the movies teach us to expect to find

And why not?

Love is only multiplied by being shared.