Adapted from the forthcoming book: Primal Healing—How to Craft Your Optimal Eating Plan Using Primal Principles & Chinese Medicine, by Dana Leigh Lyons, DOM
In Part 1 of this article, we explored Guiding Principles for developing an optimal eating plan—one that meets your needs and serves your health and wellness goals. We also outlined Primal Parameters that, within the context of Chinese Medicine, offer a powerful tool for whole-body balance and healing.
In our Alchemist Eating program, this solid foundation—based on scientific knowledge, empirical evidence and clinical experience—is crucial.
And yet, it is not enough.
Optimal, lasting results require another essential component:
Self-exploration and experimentation
Basically, this means a willingness to engage in continuous, curious, compassionate and mindful investigation.
You won’t be alone, however. We’re here to guide you, encourage you and facilitate the process.
But the process is very much a partnership, and the following Self-Exploration Essentials are part of your job on the path toward crafting an optimal eating plan and finding a more balanced, more complete expression of yourself:
- Get curious. Investigate. Be a scientist in an ongoing n=1 experiment. Be an explorer in the exciting, interesting, ever-changing terrain that is your body-mind…that is you.
- Be mindful. Bring mindful attention to what you eat and drink as you’re eating and drinking it and afterwards—immediately, the next hour, the next day, the coming week. Bring that same level of attention to patterns, routines, habits, relationships and feelings around food and eating. The more you expand your sphere of awareness, the more you expand your sphere of choice.
- Be honest. Clarity and change come from being straightforward with yourself. This is sometimes raw and sometimes painful. But without honesty and authenticity you’re wasting your effort, money and time.
- Be gentle. Your job on this journey is to bring curiosity, mindfulness and honesty to an ongoing process. There are no “right” answers and no set endpoints. There’s also no shame, no guilt, no judgement. Just notice, act, notice and act again.
- Act. Don’t just read and plan—do. Sometimes it’ll be exciting and easy. Sometimes it’ll be a tedious chore. Sometimes it’ll fill you with rage—or joy or sadness. Sometimes things will move quickly and you’ll see all the changes you’d hoped for and more. Other times shifts will be more gradual, and steps forward will be interspersed with set-backs. Don’t let the latter derail you. Just keep looking and moving in the direction you want to go. Moment-by-moment, step-by-step.
- Have faith. You’ve already done the hard part—made the difficult choice to step out of easy and into a shaken-up status quo. Seek guidance and support from those prepared to guide and support you while remembering that you are your own ultimate guide and support. Trust in the process and trust that there’s great power in mindfulness, persistence, patience and time.
We at the Alchemist Clinic can help you use these “Essentials” to craft an eating plan customized to your goals and needs.
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