There’s a story about the preacher who preached on the evils of a various sins and vices. One of the old deacons encouraged him on, both with hearty Amens during the sermon and words of appreciation after the service. But then the preacher preached on the evils of tobacco and the deacon, a well-known smoker, sat stony faced though the sermon. After worship he had only one thing to say.
“Preacher,” he said, “now you’ve gone to meddling.”
That’s something of what I thought as I read The Slow Down Diet recently.
“I suggest you let go of all coffee for this week.”
Yeah, like that’s going to happen.
The point Marc David is making here is that many of us use caffeine as a way to override our natural energetic rhythm. When we’re in harmony with that rhythm our metabolism works at its best.
I don’t use coffee as a means for keeping myself awake. I realized, however, that I’ve been using that afternoon decaf as a way of nurturing. Holding the warm cup, smelling the aroma, tasting the bite of the beans on my tongue… even the experience of getting out of the office to the coffee shop nurtures my soul. While I’ve not been eating less I’ve been starving my spirit and even the best latte is a poor substitute.
Early on in the book this quote caught my eye was
“The way we do food is the way we do life.”
Over the last few days I’ve realized that the reverse is also true: the way we do life is the way we do food. My life got out of kilter which then became manifest in my eating.
Injury has curtailed my workouts, although if I’m brutally honest, that’s mostly an excuse. My road bike stays hooked up to the trainer in the guest room. I could work around the injury. I don’t have to be waylaid by the snow.
I fell into the trap of letting my schedule be my excuse. I looked for reasons not to work out instead of ways to make it happen. I’ve been reminded again that exercise isn’t an option for my life (well, for any of us but that’s for another day.) While it exhausts me it also nurtures me. While it tires me out it brings me energy.
I let my schedule push out the other necessity in my life: creating. While I’ve been busy creating courses and webinars, I haven’t been just plain writing. If I go too long without playing with words my spirit gets stale.
And when these things happen, I don’t eat as well. Exercise connects me to my body. Creativity connects me to my spirit. And connection with both is needed for eating with awareness.
What practices nurture your spirit?
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