We hear a lot these days about the importance of slowing down so we can focus more on BEing and less on DOing. This is a concept that is challenging for most of us, especially in a society that rewards us for over DOing! I'm experiencing some profound shifts in this area recently and wanted to share them with you ...
As I've shared, I'm currently on an Ayurvedic healing journey and although it's only been 2 weeks, I've noticed significant changes! I'm adjusting habits based on my Dosha type such as my sleep patterns, my activities, and what I put into my body. It's also giving me tremendous insight into my tendencies, mannerisms, and mindsets.
The first four days implementing some of these changes was rough! Two of the things I eliminated/reduced were coffee and processed sugar. Two things that are right up there with drug addiction! I detoxed for four days and experienced headaches, lethargy, moodiness, and sensitivities. It was not fun and then all of a sudden it was like the fog parted and I could see and think so clearly ... it was amazing!
I now have more energy but what I'm really noticing is how mindful and connected I feel without all the toxins and stimulants clouding me. I took most of last week off from my business so I could slow down, be present, process, and be open to receiving messages and boy did I ever!! It felt really good to be present in joy, mindfulness, and gratitude without having any expectations of myself.
As I reflect over the past few weeks, I see 3 key things that I've shifted that have most affected my behaviors and mindsets. Here they are ...
3 Things Standing in Your Way of Mindfulness
1. Processed Sugar - Processed sugar has a number of negative effects on the body and unfortunately, it's hidden in all processed foods. The effects are ...
- Anxiety and depression
- Autoimmune issues
- Reduced cognitive ability
- Burst of anger
- Leaky Gut
- Weight gain
- Lack of focus
Just to name a few!
No wonder we're not able to slow our minds down with all of that going on! You cannot be welcoming in all of this destruction and expect to be able to access a mindful and connected space. The kicker is you may even think you are ... but you're not. That was me! I didn't realize that these poisons were only allowing me to access a certain level of mindfulness. Greatly reducing processed sugars will support your health on every level and allow you to become more mindful and present.
2. Caffeine - If you're like me, you're throwing an adult tantrum right now lol! I love everything about coffee! The smell, the ritual, the taste, the comfort ... ahhhh sweet java! Well, guess what I haven't had in 2 weeks ... coffee!! For me, this was a necessary step because of my ongoing hive and histamine issues. Drinking coffee every day was putting my body under a great deal of stress and it was lashing out. By just eliminating coffee, I've noticed reduced skin and digestive issues. However, let's talk about how it affects your ability to be mindful. Before we do, I want to say that small doses of coffee can be good for you but let's be real about the way 98% of Americans consume it. Can you honestly say that you have 1 8oz cup of organic black coffee per day? I didn't think so! If you're a coffee drinker, chances are you drink multiple cups per day and add things like flavored cream, sugar, and other toppings. Notice I also said organic because coffee is known to be one of the most toxic plants because of the pesticides used (tea as well). So with those habits in mind, let's carry on ...
- Rapid heartbeat
- Muscle aches
- Fertility issues
- Increased blood pressure
- Prevents calcium absorption in bones
The list goes on and on! So if you're one of those people that is sipping your coffee all day, you most likely have a hard time becoming mindful and centered, especially if you're loading it with sugar on top of it! I would venture to guess you may also be experiencing some digestive issues as well.
3. Social Media - The very opposite of being mindful and in the moment, is mindlessly scrolling through social media. It's become such a norm to pick up our phones every time we have a free moment. And for what? To scroll through social media and see pictures of other people's families, pets, adventures, meals, workouts, and political opinions? Sure it's really cool to stay connected to friends and family around the world, however, set your boundaries! You have your very own family, pets, adventures, meals and workouts waiting for you and you certainly don't need the stress of the political opinions! Here are a few tips ...
- Intentionally leave your phone at home once in a while! Yes, it totally feels weird, which is why you should do it! We are too connected to our phones and that reduces the ability to be mindful. I left my phone at home last week and took a blanket and a book to the park. I was able to be fully present in joy and relaxation without feeling the need to constantly look at my phone. It's just like anything else, the more you do it the easier it becomes. Not to mention, it feels awesome!
- Set your social media boundaries. Only you can decide what's appropriate when it comes to creating your boundaries. I would recommend getting in touch with your current goals. Maybe it's to be more mindful and every time you log onto social media you're distracting yourself from that goal. Maybe it's to get a higher paying job but every minute you are mindlessly on your phone is a minute that could be used for personal development to help you get that job. Maybe it's to have a better relationship with your partner but every time you scroll through your social media you are checking out of your relationship. Set your boundaries and allow yourself designated phone breaks throughout the day. I challenge you to only allow yourself 15 mins or less of mindless scrolling per day. You can even split it up into 3) 5-minute breaks. Your real life needs you and is way more important!
So yes these are three BIG things that are highly present in most people's lives. Creating new habits and behaviors is never easy but always worth it. If you know it's going to serve your highest good, make you happy, and support your optimum health - is it something you're willing to explore? Only YOU can decide what's right for you! This blog contains words for thought for those of you who are seeking to slow down and become more mindful in your every day lives.
I honor your journey and I am here for you ...