What Are We Nourishing Ourselves For, Exactly? (Answer: To Bring Wellness & Wholeness to Our World)
Over the last decade, my main focus has been nourishing my body in order to achieve healing and wellness. While our health is important, I’ve noticed that I’ve become, perhaps, too self-focused. Current events cause me to ask myself, “What are we nourishing ourselves for, exactly?” The answer, I feel, lies in nourishing ourselves so that we can then nourish our world toward wellness and wholeness.
I started my business in a closet in 2014. Betcha didn’t know that, did you?
Over the previous few years, I had successfully transitioned my family to eating Real Foods 90% of the time. I did so with uncomplicated recipes, making simplicity my #1 priority.
In Facebook groups, homeschool forums, and among real-life friends, I heard 2 main reasons why moms felt it was next to impossible to incorporate whole, from-scratch foods into their lifestyles:
- It was too time-consuming. Cooking everything from scratch wasn’t doable because busy moms didn’t have the time or energy to be in the kitchen constantly.
- It was too expensive. Organic produce and grass-fed meats cost so much more than their conventional counterparts. Locally sourced foods are sometimes priced even higher.
So, I reasoned that could share the ways in which I had incorporated Real Food and holistic medicine into our lifestyle in hopes of helping other moms who wanted to do the same.
All The Nourishing Things was born. And for 6 years, it’s been 99% about nourishing foods and recipes.
Fast forward to 2020…
As I write this, George Floyd’s murder by a policeman in Minneapolis was exactly 1 week ago. Although my life hasn’t changed all that much, my life has hugely changed.
The change I’ve experienced is a massive wake-up call to educate myself and uncover where hidden racism exists in my life.
This has me questioning my business, too. Taking a step back and evaluating everything in your life is a healthy thing to do. This isn’t the first time it’s happened. It won’t be the last. (My email list and social media following are dropping like flies as I become more and more vocal about hard, uncomfortable things.)
When I look at this beautiful website I’ve created and devoted to Real Food in the light of the bigger picture — a worldwide pandemic, systemic racism, climate change, skyrocketing unemployment, an ever-widening wealth gap, millions without healthcare, etc. — it makes me want to give up.
Obviously, staying in that headspace wasn’t going to lead me anywhere.
I realize no one expects me to stop what I’m doing and go stand in a protest for racial equality, fair pay, or free healthcare (although that may very well happen).
But, it does beg the bigger question…
What Are We Nourishing Ourselves For, Exactly?
Like many of you, I have spent over a decade learning and implementing better nutrition for my family and myself.
I have experience with Rife machines, bio-feedback, Traditional Chinese Medicine, homeopathy, acupuncture, essential oils, DUTCH testing, hormone-balancing, Nutritional Balancing, food sensitivities, EMDR, anti-anxiety medication, and more.
In 13 years, our family has been gluten-free, then paleo, then low-carb, then egg-free, and dairy-free.
We’ve spent thousands of dollars on supplements, protocols, and practitioners.
And yet, during this time in history, I do not know what to do, how to help, what to say, or how to respond. But, this question keeps glaring at me:
What are we nourishing ourselves for, exactly???
If our health begins and ends with us, do the benefits of our good health begin and end with us, too?
Are we nourishing ourselves… just for ourselves??
Let me make this personal, since that’s what it is:
Have I been nourishing myself just for me? Has it all been so I can feel better or see a reduction in symptoms or achieve the glowing goddess of health standard I picture in my head?
For most of the last decade, my honest answer is, “Yes. Yes, I have been super focused on myself. Nourishing myself has been about getting rid of symptoms and solving all the health puzzles.”
I was personally part of Toxic Wellness Culture. Recognizing that meant I had the choice to remain in it or step out of it — and I’ve chosen to step out.
What good is it to nourish myself to wellness and wholeness if I am not using my physical health and strength to bring wellness and wholeness to my sphere of influence?
Hold On, There
Am I saying it’s wrong to invest in yourself just for yourself? Absolutely not.
Am I saying that a focus on nourishing yourself means you aren’t focusing on your kids or your community or your world? Absolutely not.
Something I’ve noticed online is…
When someone puts out an opinion or idea that we don’t agree with or it strikes a chord in us, we often perceive it as a personal attack.
For instance, “Black Lives Matter” sparked the impertinent “All Lives Matter”. However, saying “Black Lives Matter” does NOT equal “All Lives Don’t Matter”. We have a way of inserting our own bias, traumas, and offenses into the content others are putting out there.
I have no idea what your motives are for nourishing yourself. I have no idea if it’s because you’ve had a health crisis, are trying to prevent or heal a chronic illness in yourself or your child, or are an activist for racial equality, climate change, clean water, or anything else and you need to be well to do the good that you do.
Let me clarify: THIS IS NOT AN ATTACK ON YOU.
In light of recent events (has 2020 seemed like the biggest dumpster fire to anyone else??), I have personally re-evaluated my own motives for eating Real Food and nourishing my body.
I’ve seen a little too much focus on self and not quite enough focus on how I’m bring wellness and wholeness to my world, in addition to myself.
We cannot heal the world until we have healed ourselves.
I don’t have perfect health, but I’m damn healthy. It’s time for me to take this body that I have nourished into wellness and use these hands and these feet and this mouth and these ears to bring some wholeness to my world.
Little Ways That I’m Using My Wellness to Bring Wholeness to My World…
I am aware that everyone’s story involves trauma of some sort. Usually, I don’t even know what their trauma is, and I don’t need to. But, I am now able to listen to other people with the awareness that their pain, their offense, their defense is an instinctive response to their past trauma. Then, I can listen with compassion rather than listening to respond with my defense.
I have learned that the answer is always more compassion. ANY fiery situation — whether it’s an argument with my teenage son or a protest that’s bordering on violent — can be soothed with more compassion. My own wellness and wholeness would not have been possible without massive amounts of self-compassion. Therefore, more compassion brings more wholeness to my world.
I’m having honest, hard conversations with my family and close friends about the state of our world, how it’s impacting us, how we can learn, how we can help each other and, in turn, help our world.
I’m reading books and blogs and following social media feeds to educate myself and my family. There is a WEALTH of information on everything from how to talk to your kids about racism to how to reduce your carbon footprint out there. I’m finding it, reading it, putting it into practice in the best ways I can.
Finally, I’m using my voice. MLK said, “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the thing that matter.”
I used to be afraid of the criticism and unfollowing that would happen if I strayed out of my lane to talk about stuff other than food. The hard stuff. The uncomfortable stuff.
Well, no more.
I have a platform and a voice, and I’m going to use both to speak up about things that matter.
Yes, nourishing ourselves matters. It matters so we can show up better for ourselves, our families, our friends, our communities. It matters so we can use our own wellness and wholeness to bring healing to our worlds.
More Posts You’ll Love…
- Toxic Wellness Culture: Why Over-Focusing on Health Is Keeping Us Sick
- 5 Reasons I Eat Keto Desserts… Even Though I’m Not Keto
- 10 Tips for a Mentally Healthy Holiday Season
- What If I Can’t Afford Organic Food? (How to Let Go of the Guilt & Embrace Real Food Anyway)
- I No Longer Sell Beautycounter (here’s why)
- I’m Super Crunchy… But I Take Anti-Anxiety Medication Anyway (here’s why)
How are you nourishing yourself in order to bring wellness and wholeness into your world?
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