You know how people say, “Don’t just stand there, do something!” or “If you don’t feel well, do something about it!”?
Well, those are definitely things I might say to someone (and, quite honestly, I say it to myself all the time) but today I want to encourage you to take a step back and look at your health journey as if you were on the sidelines.
Often we get so caught up in our daily lives that we forget to pay attention to ourselves. Or we read about the latest health food and rush to the store to get it. Or we come across a new recipe book and dive into it. But we do all of this without consideration of what we really need as individuals.
You see, there is the concept called “bioindividuality” and it’s a concept they hammered into us at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition (and for good reason!). It means that what fuels one person may poison another (gluten, anyone?!) and that no two bodies are alike. So following blanketed health advice isn’t always good for you.
For example, when my ulcerative colitis was at its worst, I knew how good kale was, so I started eating it, but it only made things worse because eating raw foods was so hard for my struggling digestive system.
And I knew how good taking a multivitamin could be, but when I started taking one, I was going through a really stressful time in my life so my body wasn’t even in a position to fully absorb the nutrients, and all I was doing was wasting money on vitamins.
So after many failed attempts to feel better by eating kale or taking a multivitamin, I took a big step back and looked at my life and my health as if I was sitting on the sidelines observing myself. It helped me really understand what was going on with me and what I truly needed in that moment.
I needed yoga, not multivitamins, when I was feeling stressed. I needed soups, not kale, to ease my digestive system back to health. And I needed to slow down and only try one new thing at a time.
This was a really hard thing for me to do. But once I finally did it, my health completely turned itself around, almost on its own.
So here’s what I encourage you to do: Close your eyes and imagine going about your day. What kinds of things are you doing on a typical day? How are you acting? What are you eating? How do you feel? What do you need more of? Less of?
Enjoy experiencing the good and the bad. Take it all in. Your healthy journey is magical. So enjoy the bumps along the way, the lessons learned and most importantly – listen to your body. It’s telling you some pretty incredible things if you just take a step back and listen to it from the sidelines.
You won’t regret it.