What’s all the fuss with wellness: eating well, living well, exercising well? Simply put, wellness is taking your health into your own hands; knowing if you put clean in, you get clean out.
Diseases like Urinary Tract Infections, Liver Diseases, even Mood Disorders, they can be a result of poor mental and physical hygiene. Understand that we are not laundry machines. Our bodies, minds and spirits cannot be clean and full of energy when we are putting dirty in. If we put dirty in, we are going to get dirty out.
I was a junk food and sugar addict. Every night after dinner I needed that sugar fix. As I searched my pantry for chocolates or my kids fruit snacks, I would think this doesn’t make me an addict, does it?
DENIAL. I lived in denial that the gluten-full meals, the “does-your-body-good” milk, even the sugar fixes were causing my stomach cramps, bloating, and fatigue. Denial that being sedentary was causing my anxiety and inability to think clearly. I realized if I keep my body and mind clean and positive, I begin to rewire my spirit for wellness.
This realization allowed me to become in tune with myself. I could feel, sense and truly acknowledge what prevented me from a healthy state of being, or wellness. I made 4 simple changes to my life, and learned a funny thing about wellness; once you get a taste, you start to crave more.
1. I Started Meditating
Studies show that meditation affects the brain waves allowing us to have better focus, less anxiety, less stress, better memory, more compassion, and more creativity with just 20 minutes a day.
We spend 8-12 hours a day at work, whether on the computer or at home. We cannot expect 5-10 minutes of meditation to counteract that. We have to go deeper 20-45 minutes. I’m sure you’re saying, forget it, I don’t have that much time.
Realize that meditation is like strengthening a muscle in your body, if someone told you to begin with 50 reps you’d probably quit before you even started. However, if you start with 10 repetitions and build up to 50, you’ll actually start to notice gradual changes, that keep you motivated to do more. Same with meditation, the first 5-10 minutes you do will give you some peace and clarity. The more you do, the more peaceful you become, and the more focus you gain. Becareful, feeling peaceful, calm, loving throughout the day can get addicting.
2. I Changed the Way I Ate
Foods you eat give you energy! Foods with too much sugar or fat cause an overuse of insulin and bile, to break them down. The overuse of these enzymes can cause diseases in our bodies, like diabetes or hypercholesterolemia.
Ever notice what happens when you eat the wrong foods? For me, I would have runner’s block or creative blocks, I couldn’t focus and think of new ideas. I’d also have personality blocks, this was the worst block for me. I became frustrated, tired, and lost my cool very quickly.
I started with a 3 week cleanse called the Clean Program by Dr. Alejandro Junger. It transformed the way I ate and how I felt. I felt lighter, energized, focused, and my body actually began to crave healthier foods.
Even when I stopped processed sugar, I felt nauseated when I smelled it in cakes and cookies. My body was guiding me toward healthier, more energy-imparting cravings.
3. I Focused Activities to What I Needed
When we become stressed or have anxiety, the levels of cortisol and other hormones in our bodies rise. I turn to deep breathing, yoga, running or weight-training, and become instantly relaxed and ready to respond calmly.
Over time, by exposing my body to these activities when I was stressed, it became like a prescribed medication to improve my mood.
My body started to crave activity to release the stress. This also allowed me to have a deeper connection with my body, sensing the tension building up and learning what activity I needed to calm it.
4. I Started Being Kinder to Myself
I used to criticize myself, it seemed like all the time. I would tell myself I can’t run as far, or that my butt wasn’t tone enough to wear those new bright red pants yet. I would even criticize my own writing.
What I told myself became true. I wouldn’t push myself to run longer because I had already succumb to my slow pace. My pants hung in the closet because I never did feel good enough to wear them, and my writing was never shared because I believed it wasn’t good.
Denial! I was denying myself all the goodness I am and have to offer. This had to stop. I told myself, I’m fabulous. I rocked those red pants and ran that extra mile, because I told myself I could. As for my writing, well look how far I’ve come just by being kinder to myself!
It allows us to become empowered, and anytime the mind says “uh you can’t,” We have the courage to say “shut up!”
Positive thoughts, not only make you feel better, but they motivate and inspire you. What comes next, the craving to have more.
You’ll start saying, I’m ready to take responsibility for my health, my moods and my life. And that’s how a laundry-machine believing junkie becomes a wellness addict.