Searching for the best suitable lifestyle can get very confusing. Should we give up all modern technologies, possibilities, ideas and views and go back to the ancient way of living? Or should we ditch all the wisdom our ancestors gathered and taught us? Meat, eggs and other products made of animals are malicious? Or are vegetarians wicked? Do we all need to be slim and go to a fitness center each day? Is Science trustworthy, or do we all need to become herbalists? So many questions, so many views.
I can’t even remember how long I’ve been interested in all these topics, but for over a decade, I have been gathering information, studied Natural Therapy, Nutrition and Well-Being for both animals as human beings, participated in workshops, etc. In this article, I share my take on lifestyle, based on gained knowledge and personal experiences. If I learned anything:
The perfect way does not exist.
As human beings, we are all unique and what might be good for me, isn’t automatically good for you too (and vice versa). Maybe you love rice, but your intestines can’t digest it. Due to rheumatism, you can’t go to the gym every day or your religion prohibits consuming beef or pork…Various reasons that differentiate us and therefore I strongly believe we should stop trying to convince one another there is only one way to live. However, there is a way to find a lifestyle that feels good to YOU and in addition, will make YOU thrive.
As an animal therapist (specialized in dogs), I always told clients to deepen their knowledge about the pet they added to their family. To packleaders, I explained the basic needs of a dog: clean water, healthy food, shelter, structure, guidance and of course love.
We, human beings, evolve and develop differently in comparison with (other) animals. Animals act and re-act based on their natural instinct, where people mostly don’t trust theirs anymore. Some of us don’t even remember they possess this important skill.
We are capable of surviving on our own. To thrive, however, connection with other living creatures is important. There are all kinds of connections possible, as also various tools to create connection. Language (sounds/words, body, energetic, spiritual), and equipment (phone, computer, hearing aid, etc.) are examples of the tools we nowadays have at our disposal. Connecting, besides surviving plus evolving, is our most important activity and goal. Connecting to Life, to Others and to Yourself will lead to a meaningful existence.
Connection with Beverages and Food
So first of all, let’s acknowledge the important fact we are human beings. Our species need both animal as vegetable nutrients, because we are omnivores. That doesn’t mean you can’t be a vegetarian or vegan, it means you have to make sure you add supplements as a substitution for important nutrients. Per example, Taurine and Carnosine can only be found in animal based foods. Prefer meat? Like them or not, you need those veggies too 😉
I’ve read a rule, you should drink 8 glasses of water a day. Well, I personally don’t like the taste of water and instead drink a lot of tea. I avoid using white sugar as much as possible, there are lots of other more healthy alternative sweeteners available to add to your beverage of choice. In wine and coffee there have been found beneficial nutrients. Consuming alcohol on a daily base, as also too much caffeine, is not healthy for various reasons.
Eat and drink as much pure, natural food and fluids as possible. Cook your own sauces, stay away from white sugar, most people can’t digest dairy products by nature and even wheat can cause a lot of harm to your health. To me, when healthy, you should respect the specie you are and therefore, a dietary pattern you need to add a lot of vitamins and/or minerals on a daily basis, just isn’t right to me.
Of course, during Autumn and/or Winter, adding to your diet (for instance) a vitamin D complex to supplement the decrease of daily sunshine, won’t hurt you either. Medical reasons may require specific foods and supplements.
Eating pure, natural foods doesn’t have to be expensive, preparing your own meals doesn’t have to be difficult or time-consuming, it is delicious and tasteful and your body will thank you noticeable.
Connection with Shelter
We all live together upon a big ball, but I wish we could all live upon it in peace. Many of my logos represent our globe in the shape of a heart, because to me our world should and could be a place we ALL can thrive. My hubby and I like to have lots of space, in and around our house. A big wooden gate provides us the opportunity to retreat when needed and the courtyard and garden are perfect for our dog and various hobbies. Maybe you don’t want a permanent place to seek shelter, or you prefer to live on a boat. As unique individuals, the interpretation of how to fulfill our personal world will be very different, since we all have our own specific natural needs.
Connection with Guidance, Structure, Exercise
Did you know a person needs, on average, 8 hours of sleep per night and most people thrive better with a steady day rhythm? For instance, if I sleep four days in a row just six to seven hours a night, because the book I’m reading is so good or I really want to watch the end of a television program, I can’t concentrate and feel unwell during day five. I might even get cranky and who wants that, right?
It really is NOT necessary to fitness or do yoga every day. However we do have to move each day. It is truly beneficial for your health! There are simple exercises you can do behind your desk or while cooking. Take the stairs more often, instead of sending an email… walk over to your colleague in person. At least once a week workout at a fitness center, ride a horse, swim, hike, dance isn’t going to kill you. You will benefit from these kinds of activities on a physical and mental level.
Nobody really likes to be told what to do and how to live their life. I can be quite a ‘Kruidje-roer-me-nietje’ (Mimosa Pudica) myself, if I believe something isn’t fair, or unreasonable in my opinion. There are times (note to myself too) you really should ask help and reach out to a doctor, specialist, therapist, counselor, coach, trainer, dietitian.
Science contradicts often, but certified/licensed people studied hard and long, so don’t dismiss everything either. There is nothing wrong with embracing modern knowledge and techniques, if it is reasonable and thus sounds and feels good to you. Never forget, we are ALL born naked, and you always remain responsible for your own body and life. Question, challenge, debate, inform yourself, ask for a second opinion, when advice doesn’t feel right.
Connection with Mindset
Which brings me to our mindset. It all comes down to choices and being prepared to accept the consequences of the decisions you make. We, humans, are the only species know that it knows and we should, in my opinion, take care of this fact more thoughtfully. That also includes choosing your way of life.
Broaden your knowledge and stick to a lifestyle of your choice for at least thirty days, sixty days is even better. Observe carefully what is happening to your body and your spirit. Most of all, be realistic and honest to yourself. Skipping meat forever, because you don’t want to hurt or kill an animal, fine. Realize, a plant too has senses and is also a living organism. As human beings, omnivores, we are part of the circle of life. Ask yourself, if it is really a good idea to deny this fact.
Consuming fast food every day is a ticket to obesity, diabetes and many other health issues… One of my addictions is a beverage ‘cola’, which means I have to be realistic and accept the consequences: too many glasses on a regular basis will lead, in my case, to migraine.
At the same time, allow yourself to enjoy an ice-cream every now and then, join your family on holiday at the local restaurant (by the way, healthy and delicious meals on the menu are increasing), drink a glass of wine at a party. As long as you make a well thought-out decision and don’t complain later 😉
Depending on your choice of lifestyle
Eat natural food, which you can find at your local farmer’s market, in most supermarkets these days, or even at the internet. If possible, grow your own vegetables, raise your own animals to consume, and always with respect for what nature offers us.
Use your barbecue, outdoor grill to cook. Enjoy the convenience of an oven, slow or pressure-cooker. Dig a hole in the ground, use your basement to preserve your food, when you prefer this method. There is nothing wrong with using an environmental friendly refrigerator and freezer instead.
Finding the balance, which is right for YOU as a unique individual, may not seem easy, and it will not always be, however I believe it is possible. There are many more examples how to combine natural living with the 21st century. Please, don’t turn your back on modern technology and possibilities, don’t forget we are part of nature either. Boost Your Soul and find a way that makes you energetic and happy throughout the day. Wake up in the morning and like a Dutch melody goes:
”Start the day with a little dance
Start the day with a smile
Being jolly in the morning
Will make you smile all day”
Stop convincing others and yourself there is only one perfect lifestyle. Make a choice and start to live natural in and with the 21st century in a manner suitable to YOU ! Connect… to Life, Others, Yourself. Always with respect for our world.
Article updated May 2020 ©PW
What’s right for me may not be right for you!
You are and will remain responsible for your own health, your own well-being, your own environment.
When in doubt about your physical and / or mental health, about your life, about specific food choices… A doctor, specialist, dietitian, nutritionist, therapist, or other caregiver may remove your doubts.