By Kelly, our naturopath
When we talk about health at this practice we are not just talking about the absence of disease. It is the total well-being of mind, body and spirit – how many people can truly say they have this? I believe you need to be aware of where your priorities are so you can make room in your life to allow health in. So, I wanted to tell you guys about a conversation I had a few weeks ago that brought me to thinking about this topic of priorities.
I told a work mate that I have a proper cooked breakfast every morning. She says “but how do you have time?” I said “oh it’s not that hard, the eggs cook while I do my eyes [makeup] or whatever, and it takes no time to put the greens, sprouts and fermented veg on the plate”. And then she goes “but how do you have enough time to eat it”. I said “well I make time and I make sure I get up early enough so I can have a proper breakfast”.
So, I will admit, I walked away from this conversation thinking “hmmm, am I abnormal….is there something in the ‘The How To Be An Adult Handbook’ that I missed? Granted, I don’t have children I need to get organised in the morning but is there something I am not doing that I should be doing in the morning?” I pondered this for a while and then it came to me – a healthy balanced breakfast is one of my priorities that I have so that I can feel good. In my mornings I go for a walk, dry body brush and have a proper breakfast but I leave all my washing up on the sink to be washed that night. If there is clothes to be folded, they stay there. If the bathroom sink needs a clean, it says dirty til later. For some people the thought of leaving their house in this state before they head out for the day would send them crazy! Some people like to wake up 15 minutes before they are due to be at work so they can get in every little bit of sleep they possible can. And that’s totally cool – everyone has a set of priorities that works for them.
The other side to this story is when your priorities aren’t serving you or are actually keeping you from feeling well. These can be the obvious ones like smoking and excessive alcohol of course. The thing is, there are also ones which aren’t so obvious, seem harmless and have become habit rather than a priority.
I will give you an example of this from my life that is common for a lot of other people too. After a long day at work I might not finish all the jobs I want to do at home until, say, 10pm. I will be exhausted and I really know I should go to bed. Instead, I decide I need some ‘chill time’ so I can tune out and relax before bed. So I will put on some Netflix and then next thing I know it is midnight! I know it doesn’t serve me but I do it pretty much every week night. Yes, I use blue light filters and luckily, it doesn’t affect the quality of my sleep but I also know I am the type of person who does best on a good 8-9 hours of sleep. I know I would be better off reading a book or listening to one of my meditations to relax but I really enjoy watching a bit of TV before bed while the rest of the house is quiet and all the work is done. It’s a priority/habit that I have formed that I know really isn’t in my best interest.
Think about your day/week/month/year and the priorities you have in place. Think about how your time and energy is split over the day/week/month. How much of it is going to something that is beneficial for you and moving you closer to your health goal? Which of these priorities make you feel better or well? Which ones are causing you frustration or stress? Are they a priority out of necessity or obligation? Is there priorities that you have now that you can let go of or reduce so you can make room for a new priority that will serve you better?
If you are having trouble with your health goals then maybe these questions might be good ones to ask yourself. You might find it gives you fresh eyes about what is truly going on with your health. If you are having trouble figuring out what you should be making a priority to achieve your best health then maybe it’s time to make an appointment to see one of us here at Spectrum.
And don’t forget – there is nothing wrong with having priorities that serve you only. You need to take care of you before you can be fully present for the people around you.