Choose Life-Tips for Wholeness

27 Apr

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“This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live”

This past weekend I spent some time in the Smoky Mt. National Park. There’s a place me and my family go to where you can grill out along the river. There’s just something about being there that soothes my soul. We ventured out on a small hike up the trail and as the elevation rose the sound of cars eventually were drowned out by bird chirps and other rustling nature sounds. The air is crisp and energizing. It’s in moments like these I feel truly like I can grasp life.

You see, I’m a health knowledge addict. Really not sure how I got on that train but it’s a crazy ride. If you’ve ever dived into the study of healthy eating you’ve experienced the crazy debates of what’s considered right and what’s wrong. There’s so many rules of eat this, don’t eat that, yes it’s a veggie but it’s really a starch and forget about it if it isn’t 100% organic grown in a unpolluted vacuum somewhere on Mars. It gets quite stressful. So, I finally set down and made out a list of easy principles I (and you) can apply to our lives to make them wholesome.

1. Be at Peace with the Lord. Now I don’t know what your religious standpoints are but for this principle to apply to you it’s important to understand that I believe we were all created by God for a purpose. I think one of the most important things we can grasp in the world is that we are here for a reason. God is for you and has a plan for your life. When we doubt ourselves or let fear take over, we ultimately short change ourselves. I’ve been reading a book about how spiritual disobedience can cause not only a spiritual hiccup, but can lead to poor health.

One quote in particular that stood out to me in the book is, “Nutrition is not a substitute for obedience.” That really pricked me, as I noticed I was more concerned with how to eat and live my life then who I was as a person. It’s an interesting statistic (and I get that those can mean nothing sometimes) but I’ve read in many places that close to 80% of all illness has a root cause of fear, stress, or anxiety. That’s crazy! But think about it when you’re always fearing the worse or running 90 to nothing, you’re spiking your body with all sorts of neurochemicals that only belong there in really serious fight or flight type situations. Over time, your body lacks the peace and rest it needs to repair itself and ultimately your immune system takes a beating. That’s why it’s so important to be at peace with the Lord, to know He is FOR YOU and has a plan for your life. Things like unforgiveness, bitterness, and self-hatred HAS TO GO. Remember STRESS is bad.

2. Eat Whole. Now going back to the quote where nutrition is not a substitute for obedience, I do believe that we should be good stewards of our body. If you’re not sure where to begin on an health journey, or the idea of sitting down to a plate of just veggies freaks your meat loving heart–Baby Steps. Start by making tiny changes and keep going. Mess up–KEEP GOING. If you’re looking for good recipe ideas you can follow my pinterest board EAT WELL.

Start by watching food labels. A good rule of thumb is to simply eat less processed foods. I get most of us don’t have the time or energy to make everything from scratch, but I beg of you to start trying to make more from scratch. You’ll find as time advances, the box stuff won’t cut it and your wallet might be happier. (Note: this isn’t always the cheaper route, but it could save you money down the road from having to buy medication) Avoid things that are excessively processed, anything high in sugar that’s not from nature (fruit), and for the love of life please avoid artificial flavors and colors.

3. Eat your veggies. I’m not saying to not eat meat, but I do think it would help folks out to reverse the mentality that meat is your main course and veggies are sides. Sure there’s organic and conventional debates but goodness gracious if you’re eating something naturally green over something dyed green you’re heading in the right direction. One thing that’s helpful when it comes to deciding where to spend the extra money on organic is the Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen.

4. Drink more water. I know it’s not real tasty, especially if you like coke or coffee but your body sure likes it. Being hydrated is key to staying focused, energized, and satisfied. Sometimes when we’re hungry, we’re really thirsty. And sad fact, coke and coffee actually dehydrate you.

5. Be adventurous and have fun. I think all to often we live in the safe zone. But who remembers those moments? Now I’m not saying to go jump off a cliff in Brazil, but get out of your box every now and then and let loose. I’m not an advocate for Transformers, but I politely humored my friend by watching the first one with them and a scene as always stuck with me. When Megan Fox and Shia Labeouf are about to get into their robot car, she’s like, “um and do what” blah blah blah and the best line in the whole series Shia comes back with, “In 50 years wouldn’t you like to say you got in the car?” Bam. You can watch the scene here cause I’m sure I butchered it.

5. Get some sleep. Remember your body needs rest. In the world we live in that’s a rarity but your body will give out if you don’t stop.

6. Reduce clutter. When everything around us is junked up, so are our minds. It’s a stressor just looking at the disarray around us. I’ll admit this blows my mind, but Bea Johnson of Zero Waste Home, says that her family of 4 has created only one handful of trash in six months and aims at zero. WHAT? That’s extreme and remember baby steps here are important, but reducing clutter and trash isn’t just good for the environment or our wallets but getting away from a chemical overdose is good for you. Here are some tips she provides on her blog.

If you’re made it this far down, I appreciate your patience as I know this was a lengthy post but I hope that these are some tips you can apply for living well and wholeness. One of my favorite blogs and video series to follow is Christa Orecchio, founder of the Whole Journey.  Also, I’m working on a logo for a series that my friend Anna Wight is heading up. She’s hosting a seminar in July for any of you who are local to Alabama.

And finally, if you like the image above you may purchase it on my Society 6 page (Free shipping thru this weekend). It comes in a few different sizes and I think the pillows are pretty rad. Society 6 does make a bulk of the profit off these but any profit that I do make will be donated to Convoy of Hope. There are two background options, trees (shown above) and the grand canyon. If you have an idea for a solid background or anything, hit me up.

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