There can be a lot of mud-slinging in the foodie-sphere, and no, it’s not Mississipi mudpie. There are debates raging over which is the right diet for the evolution of mankind, to which group cares more for animals, and whether fruitarians will live for 120 years. Time to re-group folks. Paleos, vegans, raw foodists, pescatarians, will-consume-anything-ers, hot air eaters, and the rest; lean in.
A little tip, if you’re getting worked up like that, I can guarantee you haven’t made peace with your own choices. It may be time for a little quiet contemplation. Fear is the lowest form of motivation. It definitely works, but there is a high cost in creative energy over the long term. You may want to find your way to the love boat, sharpish.
+ Be wary of getting your knickers (or however you roll) in a twist over diet labels. If you are more invested in labels than what’s actually going on with you, you’ll miss the signs of whether you’re getting the results you desire, and indeed whether you are even enjoying the journey, or need to tweak some. When I was experimenting with raw, I stumbled into a forum that was so militant about every last piece being ‘raw’ — otherwise you were doing it wrong and not one of the chosen ones – that you wondered whether the members were inhaling something else. I saw the red flag, and quickly stumbled back out. Have your label.
‘Labels can be handy for categorising, but remember the label is not the substance nor is it the experience of it.’
+ If your ‘why’ is not more important than your ‘what’, you’ll find it hard to eat in a way that gives you the best body composition possible for you, with all the mental clarity, emotional equilibrium, and vibrant energy that goes with that, whatever ‘diet’ you choose. ‘The ‘why’ being the criteria you use to choose to eat what you eat, and the ‘what’ being the food you actually eat.
+ When your ‘why’ is more important than your ‘what’, you will enjoy whatever the ‘what’ is that supports your ‘why’. Again, the ‘why’ being the reasons/criteria you use to choose to eat what you eat, and the ‘what’ being the food you actually eat. So for example if cutting out bread, dairy, and caffeine while filling up on meat, veggies and greens contribute to me feeling amazing, unchaining my creativity, sharpening my intuition, and I’m getting all the results mentioned in 3) above,and then some, then sayonara bread, dairy, and caffeine (and vice versa).
‘But, if my priority is solely tantalising my taste buds/fitting in/eating in a trance rather than checking the food against my ‘why’; game over.’
This can apply to anything — food, relationships, and career. Can you see it?
+ If you haven’t become that person that can hold the results you desire, then a tactic that works for someone else of the same body type even, may not work for you. Why? Feeling great in your body, and eating the food to allow your body to thrive is an inside job first. This means you have to embody your ‘why’ i.e. it infuses your very cells. And you’ll need the percentage of your limiting beliefs (unquestioned habitual thinking) about what is possible, to be lower than your ‘why’ to avoid being tripped up (that’s my weird maths food formula, it’s actually about ‘attention’). Ever heard the phrase, ‘getting out of your own way’? To do that you have to ‘see’ the conditioning that overides your conscious desire. As Jim Rohn said,
“If you won a million dollars, the first thing to do is to become a millionaire.”
Otherwise that million dollars ain’t hanging around.
+ Okay we all know the saying, ‘how you do one thing, is how you do everything’. No? Where have you been? Surfing the moon? (love you.) This is referring to the fact that we are always showing up ‘as within’. And it’s not always easy to see the weakest link, or even the greatest strength.
How we purchase, act around, and consume our food can reveal a lot about ourselves, and our (under the radar) values. We can then use that information to shine a spotlight on other areas of our life. e.g. can you practise delayed gratification? Are you driven to eat by hidden triggers? Do you ever taste the food that you eat? Can you describe the tastes? Do you consider how your choices affect the wider community. Fascinating stuff.
‘When information in your head becomes revelation in your heart, you are transformed.’
+ There seems to be a myth going round that everybody should be able to eat every food going. It is a myth. What you can eat is ultimately affected by your unique biochemistry, and then there are other factors like lifestyle, climate, nutritional reserves, fertility prep (my term), geography, resources, stressors, time, availability, and the ‘small’ matter of what has been created for food. We don’t all wear exactly the same clothes, holiday in the same places, or participate in every sport going.
‘There is so much food to choose from. Find out what suits you, then simply choose it.’
What we do instead is choose food based on our numbed out taste buds, and try to fit it to our biochemistry. Hence the diet industry. Backwards.
+ Your body really knows what suits it. But to be honest if you’ve been eating unconsciously for years you may not be able to read it. Especially if conventional wisdom is telling you ‘what’s good for you’. Red wine is not my thing. I don’t care how much resveratrol is in it. Apart from the glorious glass (+1) of the most fulsome Rioja (my first ever red) I sipped, while spending one festive season with some monks one year (don’t ask), red wine since then has never really measured up. I feel dopey; not the feeling I’m aiming for in life. But the odd glass of champagne suits me well. What can I say?
(Disclaimer: No more champers.)
‘The body knows. And no one died from not enough red wine.’
+ It’s okay to eat off piste when you feel like it. If you’re (internally) clear on your ‘why’ you will automatically sensor yourself before you go too far; it’s like your neuro-emotional snow plough kicks in. It’s also a choice to always eat stuff that harms you, makes you feel bad, and adds a terrible burden on the world. However, hand on heart, I can’t assure you that it’s the path to greatness (I am smiling ..because we -me included- do it (all) until we see it (all), and when we see it, we are doing it. Get it?).
+ On the whole we eat too much. Partly due to reduced nutrition in our food choices,partly due to a mismatch between what we eat and what our biochemistry demands, partly due to a hunger for more than food itself, and partly due to a relatively cheap way to gain emotional relief. The wise Wallace Wattles said,
‘Eat just enough to maintain your weight; not a mouthful more. If it takes power to run the stomach it is foolish to keep it in operation more than is actually necessary.’
+ Entrepreneurial types, stellar creatives and bungee-jumping multipotentialites, when you create your business plans, strategies, and project outlines, don’t forget the section headed ‘food & me’. Your return on investment with a little bit of attention, could be huge — increased focus, intuition, inspiration, ideas, energy, perseverance, dynamism, creativity.. and more. Inner equals outer.
+ Like all facets of our lives. This is a journey, not a judgement. Be kind to yourself. Be kind to others. As much as you can (because we flail around, fall and fail .. sometimes).
‘It is in the journey that we become.’
All these we can see in an instant .. in an insight. Until then.. we can be willing to see, we can read, and hope to see.. we can feel.
Have you listened to The Food Impulse workshop?