In last week’s post I spoke about the difference between surviving versus thriving, with ‘balance’ being the main component distinguishing which one from the other. I also suggested that whilst it may be challenging, transitioning from surviving to thriving is entirely possible, by taking deliberate and consistent action towards your new life.
So, assuming that you have made the choice to thrive, then what more specifically is the pathway for actually achieving it? Well, it starts with taking a ‘holistic’ approach. Unfortunately the word holistic has become a bit of a buzz word in recent times and as such, is too often used with little substance. Sure, there are plenty of holistic based practices around like yoga or osteopathy for example, but whilst these are holistic disciplines in and upon themselves, in relation to the health and well-being of the whole of you, then they are only a small part. And so, a genuine holistic approach is one which takes into consideration the health of the whole of you. This is essential because changes in any one area of your life affect every other area, either directly or indirectly.
Therefore your health and happiness are dependent on the harmony of this whole. If one part isn’t in balance, then it can throw everything else out too. This is important when you consider that most problems in your life right now are the result of putting too much of your energy into one area of your life and not enough into another. Something that so few of us actually realise, or truly understand.
This is why conventional medicine is very limited in its results, when it comes to both the prevention and reversal of the vast majority of mental and physical health conditions so prevalent today.
In-fact the only way to more permanently overcome these conditions is to live a more balanced lifestyle. This is important because, if you’re reading this post and looking for some tips to lose weight, get fit, find happiness, become healthier or anything else, then the most important thing you can do to achieve it is to have greater balance.
So, the question then becomes, what does a genuine holistic approach (that takes into consideration the health of the whole of you) really look like? Well, it involves investing your time and energy equally on 3 key areas;
What You Chew,
What You Do and
Don’t worry – they’re not about doing endless sit-ups, counting calories or strengthening your willpower muscles. Nor are they about retreating to a cave and chanting mantras all day long – although you can do that if you like. Instead put together, these 3 keys are simply a lifestyle; a way of being and a way of living in the world, and one which I myself live and breathe every day. So, let’s explore what each of these 3 key areas entails…
What You Chew…
If there is one standalone practice that greatly influences your ability to live a long and healthy life, it’s what you chew. In-fact, your stomach is very much your second brain and greatly affects every other system in your body, including most importantly your immune system.
Unfortunately, very few of us really eat a healthy diet. And it’s a sad indictment of society when processed foods are considered the norm and whole foods become an alternative way of eating, or just another trend.
So, it is essential to watch What You Chew – this includes your diet and day-to-day eating habits. In-fact, a good diet can be the difference between just getting through the day, versus feeling energised and amazing.
Some of the important attributes of this key area that you should be doing include; avoiding processed foods whenever possible, eating lots of whole foods – especially fresh fruit and vegetables, looking after your gut health, staying organised in the kitchen by planning and preparing meals in advance, reducing toxins and much more.
What You Do…
The second key involves What You Do and includes doing all of the things you should and need to be ‘doing’, in order to achieve and maintain balance.
Some of the important attributes of this key area that you should be doing include; setting and attaining regular goals, de-cluttering and simplifying your life, doing regular exercise, having a meditation practice, getting quality sleep, socializing and much more.
The third and final key to living a healthier and happier life involves living true and, has to do mostly with your heart. This is the key which is far too often misunderstood and even neglected. It is also often the most challenging of the 3 keys, especially if we are fearful off and resistant to change. However, it is also the same key which has the greatest overall influence on your ability to achieve balance and live a healthier and happier life. Simply because by doing so, you can eliminate the vast majority of stress in your life (as opposed to managing stress which is what most of us have been taught to do).
For too long we have focused far too much attention on the inner workings of the mind when it comes to such things as mental and physical health, behaviour change, resilience, motivation and the pursuit of happiness. But what about the heart? Where is its place in all of this?
Well, it is the heart which has the power and capacity to heal and to transform the world and ourselves. It is the heart that feels not the head, and it is for this reason that it is of paramount importance when it comes to these matters. Take for example something as simple as motivation. If your hearts not in it, then there’s very little chance that you will stick to whatever it is you are doing – your exercise routine, your marriage, your career or anything else. This is just one example of the importance of living true to yourself in everything that you do.
The truth is that the balance that you seek in your life can only ever really be achieved by knowing and living true to who you really are (which affects everything you think, say and do). And so, the most important thing about living true to yourself, is that is has a self-balancing effect on your whole entire life. If you have little self-awareness and/or don’t live true to yourself, then all of the things which you should be chewing and doing to maintain balance simply don’t happen. It’s the glue that sticks everything else together.
Some of the important attributes of this key area that you should be doing include; keeping your beliefs open, loving and being yourself, writing your own story – not someone else’s, living in the present instead of the past, taking responsibility for yourself and much more.
It’s a Choice
Let me guess… you’re probably thinking ‘how could I possibly incorporate all of these things into my already busy life?’ If so, then don’t, because remember it’s a way of being and a way of living in the world – one which is actually about doing less, not more.
If there is just one point that I want you to take from this post, it’s to realize that anything but a holistic approach to your health and wellbeing is merely a band-aid solution. And equally as important, that if you do not equally focus on all 3 of the key areas (what you chew, what you do and living true), then you’re not really taking a holistic approach at all.
Ultimately it’s up to you. You can either choose to live a more holistic life by focusing on all 3 of these key areas and, in doing so achieve balance and live a healthier and happier life. Or, you can choose not to, and in doing so, continue to pre-dispose yourself to all of the typical physical and mental health problems plaguing society today.
At the end of the day, nothing matters more in your life than your health and happiness. And despite what you may have been led to believe, no one has more influence and control over it than you. So, ensure to never give your power away to external influence, you’ll become powerless to change your situation. It doesn’t matter where you are at, or how old you are, it is never too late to start. But it won’t just happen, you have to be intentional about it, and make it happen.
Holistic 360 (H360)
If you want to improve and even master these 3 key areas in the shortest possible time, along with the expert guidance and support from both myself and our community, then you can do so by joining the H360 program. In the program we focus on improving just one attribute from each of the 3 key areas per week.
The H360 Program provides you with a clear roadmap on how to achieve balance by enabling you to join the dots between where you are, and where you want to go. So, if this is something that interests you, then we will be launching the online version of H360 for the very first time shortly, so be sure to look out for the next email which will have further details of when the doors open including how you can join.
If you’re not on my newsletter contact list and would like to be, then you can subscribe at www.H360.online
So let me know, do you take a holistic approach to your health and well-being? And, do you have a clear pathway for achieving balance and living your healthiest and happiest life?