When you feel really good, you’re almost afraid to talk about it, like you’ll jinx it. It takes great effort to maintain wellness, and you cherish this place with a strong reverence.
Health is sacred. There are so many souls—both with and without food-related illnesses—that don’t feel well.
And if you’re young or one of the lucky ones with a clean bill of health, you may not think about how your current habits are contributing to your future well-being.
Wellness is all around us. Everywhere. However, there are so many self-help books, new superfoods, cleanses and eating plans that tout they hold the secrets to wellness. This can be incredibly confusing and may not be right for our own individual needs. We have to get to know ourselves and tune in to what our bodies are telling us. We have to give ourselves some respect and love. We have to do the work and the research, but we also have to listen to our hearts.
Good habits and establishing kick-ass core values are a must. Sometimes it can feel as complicated as rocket science, but it’s easier than we think, kinda like physics. For example: It’s difficult to define exactly what physics is, as it keeps changing as we progress and make new discoveries. Plus, new theories don’t just bring new answers. They also create new and improved questions that can dramatically transform our lives… for the better.
The daily questions we ask ourselves could very well be the most critical and important factors that determine our ongoing health, happiness and fulfillment in life. In fact, the questions that we persistently dwell upon influence our thoughts, habits, decisions and actions in ways that go beyond our conscious levels of understanding.
That’s how wellness is. Not everyone knows wellness hacks, and not everyone understands physics theory.
The interesting thing, to me, is that both are fun to contemplate. We educate ourselves, pay attention, turn down the noise and think. How is it that these two things have something in common? The simple answer is that both science and well-being are looking for the same thing: to give us meaningful explanations of our existence.
If you take a moment to reflect on that, you’ll come to the realization that a good portion of your day is actually spent on the process of asking questions, like what you will eat for lunch, what time you should go to bed, whether or not you’ll exercise, or why you are suddenly feeling tired or overwhelmed. If you’re not happy or fulfilled with one or more areas of your life, then it could very well result from a limiting set of questions that you’ve been asking yourself that have shaped your current life circumstances.
My approach? Theorize to get energized! When you ask yourself resourceful and solution-focused questions, they will expand your awareness of your strengths and the possibilities that are available to you at any given moment in time.
I feel happiest when I ask myself, “How do I want to feel? Am I acting in alignment with my core values? What will I do today to get me closer to reaching my goals? What habits or behaviors are no longer serving me and getting in the way of my success?” All the various dimensions of health and wellness act and interact in a way that contribute to our own quality of life.
At the end of each year, my colleague Kristen and I look back and tidy up. We’re not big on new years resolutions, but we do polish off each December with an end of the year pause and are firm in our beliefs to keep at it all year. Every day counts. All is precious. I think that meditative moments are more valuable than having a New Year’s resolution. In fact, I resolve to have no resolutions this year.
Instead, I’ll continue to will myself well each and every day with a number of empowering questions that I’ll ask myself from this day forward.
When we ask ourselves better questions help expand our awareness and understanding of ourselves and the world around us, we are also better able to recognize the opportunities and resources that we’ll need to help us move forward in our lives. Kristen and I talk more about this in our new book Gluten Free Soul Pilot and have come up with a “flight plan” that anyone can follow to achieve soulful wellness. My personal flight plan looks a lot like this:
- Walk often, stretch, and take as many steps as possible.
- Keep a full water bottle with me at all times and drink up. Proper hydration is a game changer.
- Ditch the junk carbs. A little bit is fine, but refined sugar and processed food are hard on our bodies and I want to feel great every day!
- Eat single-ingredient, whole foods.
- Get my energy buzz from sleep and exercise and avoid regular consumption of alcohol (as this interferes with the quality of my sleep).
- A 7-minute workout is better than no workout at all. It’s totally doable, as who doesn’t have freakin’ 7 minutes to spare to give themselves some respect and self-love?
- Heck naw, I’m not a purist and will have guacamole and chips or an almond milk ice-cream somethin’ somethin’ sometimes. The secret is I have the will… to stop. It keeps me on my toes and lovin’ life!
Reexamine all you have been told and forget restrictive diets, counting calories, macros or estimating point values of food.
Let’s bring ease and happiness back to our wellness with a simple, easy-to-implement message: Food should be nourishing and uplifting, not mentally draining and emotionally discouraging. Your health and self-care are NOT indulgent, elusive goals that need strict rules and money to be achieved, but something that takes curiosity, an open mind, and loving yourself through all of it.
Being open-minded is a year-round approach. It means being receptive to ideas that are unfamiliar, and possibly even uncomfortable. It means being patient with unconventional theories and bold claims when others don’t care to entertain them. An open mind is free to follow the flow of creative insight. Scientists use these methods to think in uncommon ways, to make breakthroughs, and to discover new worlds. And when you pause, reflect and reexamine all you have been told, you become more creative, more innovative, and bring more value to whatever you do.
As we begin another year, take a moment to look at what you’ve accomplished, what’s working for you and what’s not, where you’ve been and where you are going. Observe and experiment with how you want to feel and watch the momentum shift your way. Your energy force and strong will to be well from discovering your own fundamental, feel-good habits will make all aspects of your life and its mechanisms seem completely natural.
You can be your own best friend and structure your life and body like it MATTERS. It takes dedication and discipline, but so does everything else in this world that is wonderful and worth it.
You don’t need physics to set this in motion, only an attitude of wonder and a plan. Share your theories kindly. What follows is your own flight plan to the higher ground which surrounds the idea of your open-minded inquiry.
Straightforward and simple, Gluten Free Soul Pilot uses well-researched principles and proven practices to guide readers through a personal “flight plan” that targets individual needs to achieve better physical, spiritual and emotional health. It is filled with soulful strategies for wellness so you can take control of your mind’s autopilot and spend more of your time and energy on enjoying the authentic, inspired life you were meant to live.