At times in my life, I've been asked, "Are you some kind of health nut?" And there have been times when the answer would have been "absolutely not!" (maybe takeout, energy drink, or Canadian beer in hand...).
More recently, I guess I think of myself not as a "health nut," but as a [natural] feel good addict--not because I particularly am an addict, but rather because I think that the reason people become interested in health foods, implementing healthy lifestyle choices, and health in general, is because they want to feel good. And once they figure out how good "good" feels, they want it all the time. If they didn't, they wouldn't work to maintain the "health nut" lifestyle.
I suppose there are some people who enjoy the association with some measure of real or perceived prestige and exclusivity that corresponds to being something, identifying themselves with a certain group or cause like vegan/ gluten-free/ vegetarian/ a raw foodist/ a gym "rat" or "bunny" etc... Overall, however, because much of the real world is not middle school, it seems like that would be poor justification and reasoning for an adult to continue with diet and lifestyle choices for those reasons alone.
For me, making positive health choices for both my mind and my body reminds me of two things.
First, it's like in the movie When Harry Met Sally, when he tells her, "When you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible."
Similarly, when I realized I have control over how I feel as a result of what I eat and do on a day to day basis, I wanted to start feeling my best as soon as possible! That's how Danny and I got a juicer impulsively the day we decided we wanted to incorporate juicing into our diets.
And secondly, it's also kind of like when I first realized in college that although I was doing well enough, I wasn't doing every single bit of the work assigned and therefore could do better. I knew the material, I got the concepts, but I was missing out on the whole picture. The moment I figured this out--I'm still not certain how I got there--and actually committed to doing all of the work and reading assigned--and it was so tough!--but it all clicked. That semester, after decent grades in previous semesters, I earned a 4.0! I was shocked. This may seem unreasonable to be shocked, but just like how when we're only told "do this--it's good for you," the benefits seemed like they'd be negligible. I actually remember thinking, "how much better will I really do?" believing, dismissively, that the extra work wouldn't be worth my time. But I'm happy to say I was wrong.
The effort to better yourself and work towards the life you want is always worth it. It's not necessarily always going to be easy, or fun, or convenient, but it's worth being your best/ healthiest/ most mindful you. It's your life. It's your choice.
And that's what keeps me getting out of bed at my first alarm to work out each morning, even when it seems like a horrible plan to my sleepy brain. That's what encourages me to plan ahead and make gluten-free snacks when we'll be out of the house. That's what keeps me using and cleaning both the juicer an the blender day in and day out.
As is the case with everyone, I've got (a lot of) work to do with other aspects of life, like motivating myself to walk the dogs every day after being out all day, but taking life one day at a time--you know, BEING MINDFUL--helps tap into your tortoise and slow things down while keeping them flowing.
How can you make the most of your day today?
Labels: Body & Mind, Mind & Body, Mindful Eating