LIVING A CONSCIOUSLY HEALTHY LIFE
What is Healthy Living anyway?
Is it eating organically?
Is it having a fitness routine?
Is it meditating or praying each day?
Is it communing with nature?
We hear about healthy living all the time and for many, myself included, at times it becomes an overwhelm of too many things we need to change in our life.
There are millions of articles on good, healthful living. Dieting and the search for the ‘secret’ to being healthy are a $60 Billion+ industry.
And yet the statistics show that diabetes, obesity and illness seem to prevail in our world.
Primarily, it’s because as humans, we are all resistant to change.
Most often, however, it’s the drama we create about change in our minds that holds us back from the opportunities that are available to us.
We look at things as black and white, effort or no effort, good or bad.
Have you ever thought any of these things?
- You must give up everything ‘bad’ in order to eat healthy.
- You must spend a lot of money at a gym or on a personal trainer to get in shape.
- You must go to a spa, create hours of ‘quiet time’ or not have people in your home in order to relax and relieve stress.
“There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.” —William Shakespeare
Will had it right – it’s what we think of things, including ourselves, which make it good or bad, right or wrong, hard or easy.
So maybe it’s your thinking that needs to change, not the world around you. Not your financial circumstance, not where you live, not the number of people living in your home, or all the things that you believe have control over you and stop you from moving forward to a new, healthier plane.
It really is not hard to diet, exercise or lead a less stressful life… it’s hard to make the change in the way you think to take you from your comfort zone to do so!
Lifestyle awareness is how we really need to approach healthy living.
At times, that could mean shedding some pounds, at other times, eating more healthy foods, and at other moments taking time to de-stress, but overall it should be a balanced way of living and enjoying most, if not all, foods, movement and relaxation techniques to some degree.
Healthy living is different to each individual, depending upon your genetic make up, current health, where you live and what you do.
There is no one size fit all for health.
THE FIVE PRACTICES
There are, however, five practices that you can begin to follow to be sure your body gets the nutrients and exercise it needs to stay strong so that you can LIVE out this wonderful portion of your life vs. just going through the motions of being alive.
- Living consciously
- Eating as naturally as we can
- Moving (not necessarily exercising)
- Recognizing our role
- Reaching beyond our limits
Over the next few posts, we’ll examine each one of these practices.
Living a Conscious Life
Living a Conscious Life is not a religion or a form of yoga or an eastern meditation practice. It is making a mindful effort each day to know and recognize what you do, eat, say, smell and touch. It is being alert to your 5 senses, your moods, your reactions and those reactions of the people around you.
Nathaniel Branden tells us in “The Art of Living Consciously”
“Living consciously is a state of being mentally active rather than passive. It is the ability to look at the worm through fresh eyes. It is intelligence taking joy in its own function. Living consciously is seeking to be aware of everything that bears on our interests, actions, values, purposes, and goals.”
*Yes, it’s supposed to be worm as Branden wrote it, but world works too!
Living consciously is:
- Understanding that if you choose to have 5 cups of coffee until noon each day, it affects your ability to fall asleep at the time you’d like to go to bed each night.
Conscious decision: You make the mindful decision to stop drinking coffee by 9 AM so you get a good night’s rest. Every day, all the time, no matter how lousy you are feeling.
- Knowing that you have reached your mental max with work and home worries, and that you need something that will soothe your soul and take your mind off of these matters in order to re-group and have a fresh perspective.
Conscious decision: Instead of mindlessly sitting in front of the television watching a show you really could care less about or rehashing all that is going on with a good girlfriend, you retreat to your bedroom with a good book or soothing music and relax without the excess noise. Everyone in your house will like you that much more for gifting yourself with those moments of quiet and calm.
- Suggesting to a friend to trade off the lunch you were to catch up over, for a nice walk. The conversation can still be had, but you’ll both have had the opportunity to not only ward off a few calories, but burn more off too.
Conscious decision: Using your time to enjoy relationships in a variety of ways – not always centered around a meal or drinks.
A conscious life is being alert and attentive to your purpose and vision of your life. Instead of just doing the same old, same old and expecting things to change – stop, think and decide – is this taking me toward a life of healthy living or is it keeping me in my comfort zone?
Share below in the comment area the things you have done to start to live consciously!
Keep an eye on your inbox for more in this series!