Monday, October 25, 2010

What's the rush?? Slow down and give some Thanks...

I've seen so many articles, postings, even decorations and ads for Thanksgiving already and we haven't even had Halloween yet. I'm guilty as anyone though of rushing things. I do look forward to fun stuff, can't wait, plan and ponder and enjoy the anticipation but then often rush through events instead of savor....

Ahhh, what a recipe for missing out on so much - that rush rush rush right over the pleasure to conquer the next obstacle, handle things and keep rushing towards....what??

If we eat in a rush, it's easy to eat too much and not even really have the experience. Same with life. So why are we rushing through the Holidays? Probably because Thanksgiving is bigger business than Halloween and Christmas is certainly a far bigger profit maker than other holidays. It's become a cultural addiction to rush and try to fit more in instead of being happy with what is in front of us on our plate. It's such an addiction we created all sorts of fast food to open and pop in our mouths as quickly as possible so that we can fit more in. More what? More texting, talking, watching youtube videos or rushing to the next thing? Has life gotten better or have folks just gotten fatter and sicker? I see the latter. Fatter and sicker with more entertainment to distract them. Is that what you want? Is that what you aspire for your kids?

I didn't think so. So how about learning to slow down, smile and enjoy more? I remember being a kid I was only allowed small amounts of cookies and candies and treats so I would make them last as long as I could. I had fun with my food and I ate less than when I grew up and started gulping, buying into the American bigger and more is better theory. I got plump and sick like the rest of America and had to start over again. I still could learn to slow down and savor even more. It's a process. Let's begin right where we are and add a few drops of gratitude in as well. After all that is what Thanksgiving is about more than stuffing!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

What You're Missing

When you don't know, you don't know there is that blissful innocence, or is it frustration trying to deal with things in the dark? Once you do you know there is no going back. You can not take away what something looks like once you've seen it and you can't completely forget an experience. You can transform how you relate to it, but sometimes this just baffles me.

I have met people who sought out healthy eating and found it to be fantastic. They felt terrific, looked fantastic, had more energy and clarity than ever before, only to go back to old ways of interfering with themselves to have more problems instead of just adopting a regime that works for them.

I think part of the problem is that these folks saw it as an all or nothing type of thing. Either you were in or you were out. They would rather be in the coffee club and miss out on clarity for false drug induced energy. They would rather just eat in any restaurant and deal with the crappy ingredients because of the convenience and miss out on feeling vivacious and alive.

Our schools do not teach what foods do for you so our kids are missing out on basic instructional tools for living. We teach math to get ahead but not how to nourish thinking. Just getting a right answer on a test doesn't mean learning happened, it means we are teaching people to get by, do as little as it takes and steal pleasure where you can no matter the cost. It costs us all a great deal.

Food is a basic start. If you haven't learned how individual foods work for you, your missing out on a fundamental. Begin now and start living a higher quality life!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

3 steps to Having What You Want - Make that Weight Loss Easier

Have you ever noticed a friend, colleague, relative or maybe someone you just met who is telling you about themselves and you wonder why they are making simple things so tough? Have you ever asked yourself that question? I watch in awe how we all can weave intricate threads to keep ourselves feeling safe. Even the bravest people I know have their tough spots. Weight loss, relationships, money, etc. do not have to be filled with landmines of obstacles.

So how do we let go of where we stumble time and time again?

1. Awareness
2. Commitment
3. Letting go

Not that any of this is easy until it is. Hey, writing letters with a pencil wasn't easy the first time you tried either, but all those big people could do it and you were aware they could read and write and you wanted to be like them so you got committed to learning and you kept at it until you didn't have to think about it, and you could let go. Now picking up a pencil and writing probably seems easy compared with when you were 3 or 4 years old. Eating less or different items has a similar edge to it.

First you get to get real with the problem and stop hiding, blaming, defending or being defeated. Just notice when your defenses arise and take an action against them instead of reinforcing them. Sheesh, it's one thing to say you want to lose pounds but go running to the snacks at the first twinge of hunger or allow those two bites to be the whole pint as you stand in front of the freezer.

Get committed to something. Give yourself some reasons to make it more than a pipe dream. What will you have if you attain the desire? What will those good feelings do for you? How might your life be different? For example if a woman who wants to be a mother gets pregnant and starts eating much better she might not only have a healthy baby but also be giving that baby top quality nourishment for a fantastic start on life for the whole first year of its life that could mean a healthier human for it's entire life and she might look and feel fantastic on top of it. What if you are not a Mom to be? What if you get committed to eating well so that you can be more powerful in your relationships, more creative and centered and get your work done with greater ease? You might start making more money and attracting more good things to you as you feel so much more alive and aware?

Ahhh then there is that letting go point. The letting go to allow for things to flow. And the letting go of the problem. Problems can keep us buffered from something we are afraid of. Fat is a layer of protection, being preoccupied with food keeps you from having to deal with other issues. Health issues are wonderful for that. No one expects much from a sick person, they are exempt from needing to be a success or a provider - they can't, their sick right? What ever you might be using to stay safe - be willing to let it go and move into a richer, happier, fuller life.

And getting assistance with this is highly recommended - pick your coaches, healers, therapists, even friends, and get to work.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Size Matters

Our culture seems to constantly tell us bigger is better, but too much of a good thing can be painful. It all depends on you and what you would like. Obviously body parts are elastic and can accommodate, but what will make you happy in the long run?

I just came back from a pilates class absolutely ravenous. I had a lighter dinner last night and boy oh boy did I want to eat about three breakfasts as I stepped into the kitchen just now. The problem with that is I will feel overfull, my body will have to work hard to digest all the extra food and I might feel tired, sluggish or unfocused for hours. That isn't what I want. I need to be on top of my game for my clients and all I am doing, so I chose to eat a normal bowl of rye flakes and a pear. I would rather let my system adjust and if I need a little extra at lunch or dinner, it will only be a slight bit more food.

What I notice is that many people would choose to eat double and tell themselves they need it or they deserve it or that store up now because I might not get enough later type of thing. Then wonder why they are gaining inches? Now if you want to gain weight a better way is to do exactly the reverse of weight loss. Add in just a little bit more each meal. Not to feeling stuffed like at Thanksgiving but just a little more than you are used to and you will comfortably gain some weight the way you can comfortably do that in reverse and let go of pounds.

Don't make choices that are going to make you feel bad! There is sometimes pressure to get a bigger house or a bigger car or have the biggest desert because then you are a winner. If all that does is cause you pain and distress from having to decorate and clean more square footage or risk more accidents and dings in the parking lot or what have you - bigger is not better and you lose. Put the time, money and energy into things that turn you on and excite you. I personally would rather be traveling, discovering and exploring than stressing over a big home. I would also rather enjoy each meal and feel good after, than the frustrations and havoc of poor choices. What makes you happy?

Friday, October 15, 2010

The Whole Ideal

I am a little tired this morning. It's to be expected after enjoying a wonderful dessert with dinner last night and a nice amount of exercise and work all week. A body has only so much energy. Sure, I've fooled myself at times into thinking I'll just drink some caffeine or take some energy vitamins or make some alkalizing beverage and keep going feeling fine. You can't trick energy. You can mask it, force it, deny it, etc. but it is still there telling the truth all of the time. Nature is perfect that way.

Ideally I would have this whole eating thing down to such an exact science that I never had consequences right? Wrong. Perfect eating just doesn't happen in modern living. We were never designed to eat pastries. We were designed to eat fruit. We were never designed to consume all sorts of things most people take as normal fuel day after day. We were designed to be wonderfully adaptable but there is a price. Dry skin, oily skin, upset stomachs, fatigue, runny nose, cough, weight gain, these are all small signs that perhaps your eating is off. I'm happy for the small signs because they keep me from hurting myself too badly. The fatigue reminds me that as much as I enjoyed my treat, it's not something to eat all the time. It sets me back on a path of satisfying whole grains instead of bread products and lots of lighter cooked veggies instead of filling up on greasy, oil rich concoctions!

I was witness to one woman who thinks she is a teacher of whole foods who thought the answer to her diet was starve, then eat all sorts of fun foods and then drink kudzu tea (a highly alkalizing remedy) every morning. While she said she felt okay, the woman had mood swings like you wouldn't believe, made things up, screamed at people she loves because they didn't do things her way and was generally nuts. Since many emotional outbursts stem from disturbed intestinal tracts, I would lay bets hers was ill from her supposed macrobiotic regime of rice cakes, nut butters, and wacky eating.

There is no perfect absolute answer to diet but if you listen to the small signs and eat predominately whole foods, you can look and feel pretty great, avoid illness and stay a normal size consistently. I'm still enjoying my desserts, just not every single day.

Monday, October 11, 2010

What Drum are You Listening To?

We all have an internal drum. It's our heartbeat. It is there pumping the blood, getting things flowing to all the cells of your body. Then there is a more subtle beat that you listen to, the beat of something deeper inside of you, you could call it the beat of your soul. This drum beat pushes you towards things that would be of benefit and away from things that are not but it is so subtle that the impulses get stifled. They get drowned out as you listen to sources outside of yourself.

I know a woman who thinks that just about everything is a sign from God or that everyone is made of God so if someone tells her something that sounds reasonable, she things she ought to believe it. She is always looking outside of herself for directions and validations and has dismissed her inner guides for so long that she mistakes what her senses tell her and makes mistakes that validate her need to look outside of herself. It's actually common but most people don't have that strong God link in a way that makes it difficult to get back to what is inside.

I asked her to just start small and got her to start thinking of her inner voice as the true voice of God and stop making things up that kept her safe. (I also recommended she work with therapist.) Her cookies and cocoa made her feel safe and while she wanted to eat healthy, she had so many tugs from so many people that she couldn't let go of her habits of boxed cereal, salads or turkey sandwiches, and meat and potatoes. She felt these were right things to eat because so many people do. Only if everything she was eating acid and her habits were only easier for her because they were well practiced.

This woman's breakthrough came when we did a little visualization exercise going deep deep deep to find the inner drummer. She became more willing to try some new things and see how they worked. Fortunately they worked beautifully and she lost the excess weight and cleared her arthritis easily once she started to listen to her body and how it responded to whole foods and not a diet that didn't really work for her. She told me recently that even though she has learned to go and ask her inner drummer for direction she still messes up on occasion. I assured her that is part of being human and not to worry. One missed beat won't mess everything up. Just keep listening to the true beat and not a false one.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Clean Eating (Continued)

Back to the idea of Eating Clean and what does that mean. I would have to say there are degrees of clean. The more clean we eat, the easier it is for our bodies to function well. A well functioning body has more energy and can tap into the subtle energies of the layers we live in so that means more insights and less just functioning on auto pilot.

For example, coffee might seem innocuous and useful, but it creates a disturbance and imbalance being acid forming and stimulating. A little can sometimes correct certain problems for the moment, but in the long run it can alter cortisol levels (watch that belly fat rise...) deplete kidney function and disrupt your own senses making you work harder than you need to, like putting a filter over or under yourself or walking around in a cloud only it seems quite normal if the cloud is always there. We adapt incredibly fast. If you walk into a room that has an odor, most people will adjust and not even smell it after just 20 minutes.

So what do you want your normal to be? How clean do you want to live? I've noticed that many people like to experiment with their diets only to go back to what feels comfortable or fun. Dessert every night might seem like a reasonable thing since many of us grow up learning that dinner ends with dessert. Only in other countries that might mean a little fruit and not a cake, cookie or pie. If you think that evaporated cane juice isn't like giving yourself a hard knock with a 2x4 - think again. You'll wake up tired the next day and wonder where the coffee is. Seriously.
We don't escape the consequences of what we ingest. Some people are stronger than others so they might recover quicker or notice the effects less but eventually your eating with catch up with you good or bad.

You get to choose how you want your diet to be. Sometimes it might be super clean where you'll eat only foods that grow such as whole grains, vegetables, sea vegetables, beans and fruits. Other times you'll want to add in good quality breads (look for no sugar or additives - not easy outside of health food places.) or baked goods. In good health you might play more and enjoy the occasional clogging foods like pizza for example and then have a few clean days. Cleanses do not make up for eating poorly. They can certainly help to clean up but I wouldn't recommend extreme to extreme types of eating.

Being aware of your options and how far you can stray before the tell tale signs of imbalance begin: runny nose, slight aches, itch, cough, flatulence, etc. Some people will want that energized tapped in feeling of clean eating and some just won't care and everything in between. The only way to really know though is to give super clean eating a go for long enough to get yourself on a high level of well being where happiness and energy are the defaults and take it from there. You will find your compass, your north star and just where you want to be on the subject of clean. I've grown accustomed to clean eating like taking a shower every day or brushing my teeth. It won't hurt once in a while to skip it, but it feels so much better being clean.

October in Print

October appears to be interview month for me: I've got the last word: and
check em out - leave comments!