When asked what are my keys for working towards optimum health, my answer might surprise you. A majority of us (myself included) have at some point been guilty of looking for that magic pill to solve whatever is ailing us. Whether we are looking for a quick fix for weight loss, pain management, increased energy, or a host of other chronic symptoms, sadly…that magic pill doesn’t exist. Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of pills or treatments out there that may give us temporary relief. However, they are most likely only treating a symptom and not getting to the route cause. Now, don’t get discouraged, because the remedy for what ails you may be fairly simple. So then, what is the answer? In my opinion it comes down to Awareness, Intuition, and Experimentation.
When it comes to finding optimum health, my definition of awareness is being open to the idea that there may be a variety of ways to address what ails you. This means letting go of whatever dogma or strong beliefs one has for a methodology that may not be what is best for you. My increased awareness came with the removal of my blinders and actually hearing the paradoxical information that others were sharing with me. For health and fitness, it was letting go of my extremely strong adherence to low fat/high carb nutrition and chronic-cardio fitness plans. Awareness is knowledge.
Intuition is absolutely key. And when I say intuition, I’m talking about self-intuition or self-awareness, if you will. This means actually listening to ourselves. We are our own greatest teachers. We just need to be able to pause for a moment and actually listen to what our body and brain is telling us. Once we tap into increased self-awareness it becomes much easier to see cause and effect. We are then empowered to make a change. Intuition is potential, the potential for change.
Experimentation is the work that goes into creating change. Once you become aware of a new methodology or technique that jives with your intuition…it’s time to experiment! It is also important to give that experiment time to work. Odds are you won’t see change in a day or two. Most likely it will take a few weeks or months to really see change. However, as long as you stay tuned in with yourself, you will have a sense of whether or not you are moving in the right direction.
I got lucky. I was fortunate that it didn’t take a singular life changing health event to find a better way. I did, however, suffer from years of poor mental and physical energy, brain fog, metabolic syndrome (pre-diabetes) and asthma. I thought it was normal to crawl to the coffee pot each morning to start my day. Don’t get me wrong, I still love my coffee :). I just don’t need it to remove my morning fog like I have in the past. I also thought it was normal, as a college student, to fall asleep in class or as a working professional to be in dire need of an afternoon nap. I had no idea that via some simple nutritional changes I would effortlessly have energy all day, maintain lean muscle mass, and most remarkably, throw my inhaler away after 30 years of dependence. And the key word for me here is: Simple. It doesn’t have to be complicated. Unfortunately, there is so much conflicting information out there related to health, fitness, and nutrition. For me personally, I have found that following a healthy fat, high vegetable, lower carb, moderate protein type of diet has worked best for me. I am also able to obtain my desired strength and fitness level in less than an hours’ worth of workout time per week. That being said, I believe that we all are unique individuals and through some self-experimentation we can find the nutrition, fitness, and stress relieving techniques that work best for ourselves.
In writing this I begin to wonder: How are you feeling each day? Do you have any unmet goals weighing you down? Are your current nutrition, fitness, and stress relieving techniques working for you? If so….keep at it! If not…go ahead and play around with something different. It’ll be worth the effort.
In health and gratitude,