At the heart of sound eating habits rests peace.
Quite simply, when you are not at peace with yourself, or at peace with what you are putting in your body, then you can’t expect a peaceful relationship with food.
During times when I’ve gone to reach for “less than optimum” foods, I have continually checked in with myself about how I am feeling – both before I go to reach for that food and while actually choosing that food. What I have found, and this probably won’t come as any great surprise, is that when I reach for those less great foods I am not coming from a place of peace, but a place of emotional turbulence; even if it’s only mild (which it usually is), it can be enough to have me acting out of alignment too.
Over the years I have found that to maintain a healthy diet, and specifically to eat more or all raw foods, we need to constantly be “working” on ourselves. The amount we have to grow and evolve as a person in order to be able to handle our emotions without going to the cookie jar can often be quite astounding. It’s only when we try to go raw that we realise just how much we’ve been relying on assorted foods and drink to keep our mood high, our attention elsewhere, or our feelings pushed-down and locked inside.
This awareness hits us all at once point or another. And when it does it’s wake up time!
The first awakening is to the fact that we are out of alignment, and we hadn’t realised it before. The second is that the foods we have been eating previously have been both the symptom and the cause.
When we get to this stage it can be quite a shock. Like a rabbit caught in headlights we desperately look around for the safest place to flee. Could it be the fridge? Perhaps I should just go to bed and forget about it? Maybe I should throw myself into a new love affair or perhaps go shopping, credit card in hand?
All these scenarios and more are what can come into play as we resist going the one place we need to go – inside.
How long it takes us to do this varies from person to person. Some of us simply feel ready to step up in the game of life and get closer to the person we really are because it’s “our time”. Some of us only feel part ready and we can circumnavigate the whole issue for weeks, months, years, trying to find another way to get the same results (peace, comfort, happiness) through other less challenging means, and others of us continue to look outside of ourselves for what we seek, trying all manner of substitutes in the belief that what we are seeking is right around the corner, and we will get there, one day.
Eventually, most of us get it. True peace can only be found internally. And this means getting to know ourselves – our true selves, and coming to love, respect and forgive where necessary. And it can take a lot of work!
This journey can take some time for most of us, but it’s a journey well worth making. The internal journey – the one we most fear and yet the one we most need to make – is actually the most illuminating, the most fascinating and the most enjoyable and rewarding of any journey, but I admit that when I made my own first “journey to the depths” in my early 20’s, it wasn’t without a large dose of fear.
But by taking it step-by-tiny-step everyone that is brave enough to make this journey inwards, to charter their own deepest heart and soul, comes to realise that, in spite of their greatest fears, in actual fact they are much more amazing and awesome than they ever thought possible, and that realisation is priceless beyond measure.
By reaching this peace, this knowing that all is well in the world, that all is happening as it should and that there is a bigger much more intricate and breathtaking plan than we ever thought possible and all we need to do is listen closely to it and follow it, that’s when our eating habits can start to settle down. Knowing, really knowing, that every experience starts from within, means that we can begin to be the master of our own destiny rather than being busy going through the motions feeling powerless.
When this has been experienced, then eating increasing amounts of raw food becomes effortless. Gone is the striving, the yearning, the reaching outside for something, some thing, to bring in to us what we feel we are lacking.
Instead, rather than reaching out, we begin to give out. We begin to create our world and our life as it best suits the person we have now discovered we really are. And in line with the fact that energy needs to flow smoothly, evenly and easily to be able to give out and create in this way, then eating foods that we know will harm us, slow us down or damage us in some way is simply not an option.
Yes, getting to this place of peace can indeed take time. But as all great sages, philosophers and students of life have taught through the ages, everything we are seeking is within. When we know this, really know this, when we have touched it, felt it, heard it, tasted it and seen it with our internal eyes, that’s when we can show up in the world in alignment, integrity and joy, and eating “right” is no longer something we try to do but something we can’t help but do.
© 2012 Karen Knowler WOULD YOU LIKE TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR EZINE OR ON YOUR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this complete blurb with it: Karen Knowler, The Raw Food Coach publishes "Successfully Raw" - a free weekly eZine for raw food lovers everywhere. If you're ready to look good, feel great and create a raw life you love get your FREE tips, tools and recipes now at www.TheRawFoodCoach.com.