Have you ever done a detox? It’s pretty radical. Ancient wisdom from many cultures teaches us to leave our land fallow at regular intervals. Taking a break is so important. Whether it’s food, drugs, technology or love – letting something go for a prescribed period of time causes a huge shift that just curtailing won’t.
I just did the food detox from Mark Hyman’s best-selling book: The Blood Sugar Solution: 10-Day Detox and the lessons I took away were quite similar to those experienced by our clients when they undertake a love detox, for example. (Note: A love detox means abstaining from addictive love behaviors, like contacting a particular person or behaving a particular way in love.) In my case, I abstained from sugar, gluten, grains, all fruits besides berries, caffeine, alcohol and drugs. Detoxing has an arc to it. And if you know what to expect, you’ll be more willing to try it yourself.
THE BIG PICTURE IS HARD TO SEE
First things first, you have to take stock of where your choices have led you so far. In my case, being a bit overweight, a bit lethargic and prone to headaches and skin disturbances. Don’t get me wrong, there were a lot of healthy choices, but I just didn’t see the big picture until I read Mark’s book. I didn’t get how much sugar I was consuming in innocent low-fat substances like dressings and marinades. I didn’t realize how my food combos were slowing down my metabolism or how little good dried sugary fruits were really doing for me, especially late in the day. And I certainly didn’t realize that my cravings were caused by what I was doing and thinking, not by some mysterious immutable force. After only a few days on the detox, cravings for anything other than what was on the plan, disappeared. I was shocked. Becoming aware of…
1) how crappy I had felt
2) how I had played a huge role in that unknowingly with the choices I made
3) how good and easy eating in a new healthier way, could be
…made me want to continue.
SOMETIMES WE WANT THINGS FOR THE WRONG REASON
Next, finding myself fully satisfied without the foods I was formerly addicted to (sugar, starchy veggies, “healthy” chips, dried fruit and loads of nuts), I noticed that I thought to eat for reasons other than nourishment. I wanted to eat when I was uncomfortable about something I was about to do, or if I was bored or to mark the beginning of a relaxation period. Just like people use love or flirting with the wrong people to help them through something, I wanted to use food to help me through something. Regarding love and food: that’s not it’s highest purpose.
THIS IS DEEP STUFF
It seemed inevitable. Going without the crutches I was used to, changed me. I now have a new relationship with food. I see it as a gift. Something to pay attention to and care for. Something that literally changes my life and nourishes me. I also see it as a process, a relationship – part of my relationship with nature, god and my community. I am no longer using food, but can see it as something to develop a relationship with. With love too, we need to move beyond satisfying a temporary hunger to be affirmed and into a more spiritual relationship with the concept of love.
You are the author of your life. You get to tell how the story of your life goes. That means you also get to pick the themes, set the mood, and give the characters their motivation, especially you. If you decide that you are going to have a powerful and nurturing relationship with food, and love, you can have just that. Start by stopping.
P.S.- Our Dream Body Telecourse is 8 weeks of guidance and nurturing your relationship with food and with your self.