How are you feeling these days? I’m talking specifically about your physical state. Are you taking care of yourself? Are you getting actual nutrition in your diet with lots of fresh fruits and vegetables? Are you moving your body every day in some way? And, no, shuffling from the bed to the couch doesn’t count. How about sleep? Are you getting enough? Are you waking feeling refreshed and ready to dive into your life for another round? Are you hydrated? (Meaning: Are you taking in so much water that you are urinating several times throughout the day, and your urine is pale and odorless?) Do you regularly take in deep cleansing breaths of FRESH air? Are you getting direct sunlight exposure for at least thirty minutes daily?
This is a lot to think about, for sure. And, sadly, in this modern era, we must think about it in order to make it happen. As a culture, we have become so removed from our Natural state that we have to actually work at being healthy.
And then, if you are ambitious enough to actually give health some consideration, you are faced with a mountain of conflicting points of view about what actually is healthy for the human body. There is ‘science’ out there to support any thesis you can think of! It’s confusing and frustrating and overwhelming. So much so, that many of us just throw up our hands and leave it to fate.
And I get that attitude. I really do. In fact, I’ve had more than a few moments in my life when I was tempted to do the same. (And even a few times when I gave in to that temptation!)
But this is not the answer. If we leave our health in the hands of fate, most of us will end up paying the price … literally, with exorbitant medical costs, and/or metaphorically, with sickness, dis-ease, or untimely death.
So, how do I handle all the confusion around the topic of physical health and wellness? I turn to my trusty two-part process:
I look to Nature. I take what I understand of the Natural world and the Natural Order that efficiently organizes everything within it, and I make choices based on what seems closest to that Order.
I study my personal responses to everything I try, to see how they feel for me, physically, intuitively, energetically, and logically.
For instance, there was once a time when I would regularly consume rich, fatty foods and alcoholic beverages. When I was able to gather my wits enough to step back and explore how I was feeling about these choices, my findings were grim. I was often bloated and gassy. I would oscillate between being constipated and having diarrhea. My body odor was unpleasant. I had cotton mouth a lot, and headaches. And I was super dehydrated … all the time. And then there was the shame. I would find myself binging on chocolate, ice cream, chips, cheese, and other rich treats, washing them all down with a bottle of wine or bourbon. I’d feel okay about it in the moment, but the next morning I would recall it all and would feel a huge weight of shame and disgust at my lack of will power. My memory became foggy - likely a combination of my subconscious attempts at assuaging that shame and the fact that I was often a little drunk (on booze, sugar, or both). It became obvious to me that this was not my version of healthy.
Healthy feels good. Healthy is having energy, waking up bright-eyed and present. Healthy doesn’t create feelings of shame and regret.
When I began to shift my diet to include foods that were readily available from Nature - fresh fruits and vegetables - I started to feel better. I also started to look better, smell better, function better, and feel happier.
And this small change made from this one moment of awareness initiated a powerful chain reaction.
I started moving my body more … and more easily. I slept better. I was getting outside more, so I started getting regular sunshine and fresh air. And my hydration improved as I started making more room for high water content foods … which, naturally left less room for so much booze and fatty snacks. It all began to transform in a beautiful collaborative kind of spiral dance kind of way.
So, when was the last time you took a good hard look at the state of your health? What is your body/mind telling you about how your treating it? Is it all rainbows and sparkles? Or could you maybe benefit from cleaning things up a bit?
I urge you to take a personal health inventory regularly - at least every season - to stay on top of your health and wellness. You don’t have to be perfect. But the healthier you are, the more blissful life is. The more you get to enjoy every experience.
I’m not suggesting you need to make the same changes that I made. But I am suggesting you consciously check in with yourself on the reg so you can ensure you are finding YOUR best way of being healthy.
As always, I’m here to support you on your journey should you need it. Slow and steady progress is often the most effective. Start small, and implement changes that you can actually feel good about at first. Then, when those changes become habit, shift a little more, layer another healthy practice that feels inspiring and do it until it becomes habit. And so on, until you’re loving every second of being in your body. It can be a difficult process to transition toward a healthier lifestyle, so, whether it’s from me or someone else, I strongly urge you to find support somewhere. There are so many roads to health, blissmakers. Find the road that takes YOU where YOU want to be. xo