Does the idea of being perfect bring up an auto-feeling of failure or make you feel stressed? It does for me.
When people find out I’m a naturopathic physician they’ll usually either ask if I’m a vegetarian or vegan, or laugh about how much I’m probably judging what they’re eating.
Most people assume I live a squeaky clean lifestyle because I’m a naturopathic physician. Well, I don’t.
Sure, I’ve been through times when committing 100% was really important to my healing process – like when I was on a therapeutic diet to heal my digestion, or during the 2 week cleanses I commit to twice a year to break from my everyday routine and let my body reset.
And the majority of the time, I do take incredible care of myself. I’m a really sensitive person and if I don’t stay balanced with my self-care, I feel it in a major way both physically and emotionally.
But I also like red wine on weekends, and sometimes have too much for my own good. I love dark chocolate, I’ve been gluten free for over 10 years and I still think about croissants…a lot. I go through times when sugar creeps back into my life, and others when I don’t do as much movement I know my body needs.
I’m not perfect, AND I’m healthy.
If you’ve been putting pressure on yourself to meet perfection in this department, or think getting healthy means you won’t have any more fun, is intimidating, or just seems like a overwhelming or depressing journey, read on.
5 Reasons Why Being Healthy is NOT About Being Perfect
- Being perfect is stressful (and stress is really hard on your body) – we live in an often super-stressful world right now and our hormonal systems are taking a big hit because of it.One of your body’s master hormones is the stress hormone – it affects your blood sugar balance, thyroid function and all of your female hormones. In other words,stress can throw off your entire hormonal system. Because of this it’s actually vital that your healing journey isn’t a high pressure or stressful one, and instead opens up space for you to experience compassion, love, joy and relaxation with your body, and in life.
- Balance IS middle ground – the very nature of balance is to find a happy spot that’s not too far to one side. Being healthy is about living in the 80/20 zone, with 80% of what you do being fully in your body’s best interest. The other 20% is key to creating balance, sustainable change and enjoying the ride. Yes, if you’re moving through an elimination diet, have a food sensitivity, or are on a therapeutic diet to heal your gut or help your body rebalance it’s important to be 100% onboard through the process. The entire goal though, is to get your body to a place where it’s more resilient and can step back into the 80/20!
- Falling off the wagon can be helpful…and really motivating – sabotaging your body and getting off track from your goals can leave you feeling like a total failure. I see it differently. Sometimes it’s exactly the reminder you need to commit even more deeply to yourself. When I was learning about living gluten free I went through a lot of stages, the biggest of which was denial. I figured that I could have this food I craved here and there and all would be fine. It was exactly the repeated episodes of feeling tired, depressed, fuzzy-headed, and dealing with digestive issues after eating gluten that finally drove the point home that it was toxic for me. When I finally internalized this, letting go of gluten and committing to feeling better was so much easier.
- Healing is a journey, not a sprint – if you’ve tried crash diets, super strict eating regimes, or set workout goals fit for an olympian to lose weight or fix a health issue, there’s a good chance you’ve already figured this one out. It doesn’t work. Why? Because true health (i.e. the deep down inner self-love, nurturing kind of healthy) comes from honoring your body gently, everyday.
- Getting healthy is about having more FUN! I saved my favorite for last. This one is especially for you if the idea of being health feels like a chore or a drag. Yes! There’s no doubt that setting super high expectations and being hard on yourself is a buzz kill. But setting doable goals that give you an emotional high five each time you do them builds momentum and feels amazing.
The journey to wellness is not one size fits all – it’s all about finding a pace that feels right for you, and having someone at your side who cheers you on and celebrates each little, powerful success.
If you’ve been caught up in an all-or-nothing approach with your self-care I can help you find a happy balance where you get results, without feeling majorly stressed out about it.