Taking the Focus Away from Food
As most of us eat three to five times a day it’s easy to get a little food obsessed and forget that food’s main function is to provide us with the fuel we need to LIVE our lives. This is especially true when the food consumed is fake, plastic-like and highly processed as it doesn’t provide the energy and a body to love that we need to immerse ourselves in life. This kind of “food” is especially dangerous in regards to food obsession as it has the potential to be addictive. A healthy whole food diet provides us with the building blocks such as a healthy body and deeper connection to the earth, which we need in order to create our best possible life.
However, even if we have an extremely healthy diet we can still tend to give food a little more attention than it requires. When we’re lacking in important aspects of well-being it is easy for us to turn to food as therapy; either over-eating, eating when we’re not hungry or restricting intake. Ideally, we should be happily eating when we’re hungry, stopping when we’re content and then having the freedom to get on with our lives. In order to establish this relationship with food we need to focus on the aspects of life that truly nourish us: relationships, purpose and passion, movement and spirituality.
Basically, spirituality connects you to a larger reality and can help you to better understand the connection between yourself and your surroundings. Spirituality can provide direction, purpose, identity and support. Religion falls under the category of spirituality but other ways to get connected include meditation, yoga, contemplation, prayer and practicing consciousness.
- Gabrielle Bernstein: a fabulous new age spiritual guru
- The Daily Love: a “daily e-multivitamin for your soul” that I like to read on my iPhone before I get out of bed in the morning.
I’m relatively new to the realm of spirituality but over the past couple of months it has greatly improved my life :) For me, spirituality has opened up the world of self-love and the importance of being kind to one’s self. Every day I am becoming more conscious of how my mind works and as a result am working to bring out the best in myself.
Immerse Yourself in Something You LOVE
Have you ever been so engrossed in something that you forget to eat and check the time? Most likely this is something you are passionate about and adore doing. Think about what you are doing when you feel your happiest. Is it when you’re drawing, dancing, walking, soaking up nature, swimming in the ocean, working on a project, blogging, making something crafty, writing, painting or even knitting?! Identify what you love and do it often. If this special something happens to be your job then you’ve hit gold. If it isn’t involved in your work, could it be? Word on the street is that we spend more than 97 000 hours making moolah in our working life, shouldn’t we try to enjoy the hell out of those hours?
- Forget Work/Life, Think Corporate Culture: an article by Jeff Cannon which emphasises that there “is no work/life balance, only life”.
- Do What you Love: a “space for sharing tools and inspiration to help you do what you love, for life.”
Move Your Booty
My wonderful boyfriend is a personal trainer and excercise and sports science student, so I’ll leave this section to the expert. Corbyn says:
“Engaging in regular exercise provides a tremendous amount of vital health benefits for the entire body such as reducing cholesterol levels, high blood pressure and body fat which are all major players in the increased risk of heart disease. The Heart Foundation of Australia recommends a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise daily; this can be an accumulation of daily activities such as walking for the bus or walking up and down stairs at work. Although this seems simple to do on a daily basis, many people find exercise a burden on their life. This is where finding the right exercise for you comes into play! If you aren’t a fan of spending hours in the gym there are plenty of effective alternatives including taking the dog for a walk, enjoying a walk with friends, surfing, yoga, stand-up paddle boarding, dancing and boxing. Incorporating exercise into social catch-ups is a great way for people to introduce and stick with exercise while having fun at the same time.
Exercise not only has unbelievable physical health benefits but the psychological benefits are amazing too! Regular exercise is proven to reduce anxiety and stress levels and even though you expend calories exercising, you actually receive more energy later on as it gives you a rush of endorphins and feel good hormones. This feeling is likely to steer you away from destructive eating habits allowing you to reach your health goals.”
So experiment, find something that makes you feel alive and shake yo ass!
Give and Receive Authentic Love
Healthy relationships provide the love, comfort and support that we often seek and fail at attaining from food. While true relationships blossom naturally they need to be nourished in order for them to stay at the top of their game. Haven’t seen a loved one in ages? Schedule time now to catch up with them. Think about how you can share some time with your mum, dad, wife, husband, boyfriend, girlfriend, sister, brother, cousin, uncle, friend, auntie, grandpa or grandma! If you find that your interests have strayed from those of your friends’, make an effort to connect with people who have similar interests. We are so lucky to be able to connect with people all over the world through the internet; use this opportunity! To find out more about improving the relationships in your life, check out Institute for Integrative Nutrition’s Vitamin L series.
Just as important as nurturing healthy relationships, is learning to let go of destructive ones. If someone in your life is constantly draining you of positivity then it may well be time to let go of that relationship.
In this section I couldn’t possibly ignore the joy that many of us receive through pets and other animals. Animals are simply amazing and bring so many warm n’ fuzzies into my life, Fur-babies are the bee’s knees!
So if you think you’re paying a little too much attention to food, what are you lacking in your life? Even if food isn’t a problem, a balance in these areas will definitely contribute to a happier and healthier life :)
I’d love to hear what truly nourishes you.
These ideas are based on my studies so far and personal experience. Whilst I don’t believe the above can do any harm, If you have an eating disorder I understand that it’s just not that simple and specialist advice is more applicable.