“A healthy outside starts from the inside” Robert Urich
Living a healthy lifestyle is a task many of us take on each day. From eating enough fruits and vegetables to lowering sugar intake to eating the right amount of protein.
We try our best to take care of our body by not exposing it to harmful or toxic chemicals, maybe cut back on alcohol, smoking, or even processed and sugary foods, and spend a fair amount of time at the gym.
But a big question about health I often ask myself, and I ask you today is, how is the health of your mind and spirit? Are you healthy from the inside out?
You see, we have learned from a young age that physical health is important. And though we may fail over and over, we keep making the attempt to take care of ourselves physically. Sometimes we have tried diets because we know we carry too much weight, so we try the latest health trend. Sometimes, we start an exercise regimen because we know the importance of having strong bones and muscles…oh, and it helps control weight. We eat certain foods because they have vitamins and minerals that will keep the cold & flu away and skip others because they might cause cancer or other illnesses. We do what we can to be in good physical health!
But what about our mind? What do we do to keep it healthy? What do we do to keep it sane when a lot is going on? What do we do to relax when we are so stressed we have a break down? Do we constantly find ways to have a healthy mind like we do for physical health?
The Importance of a healthy mind
A few years back I learned the importance of having a healthy mind, that is, one that is in complete peace. This didn’t mean my life was easy and I wasn’t going through storms or busy times. It meant that I learned that making time to relax is important. I learned that living with anxiety, worry, fear, depression, and all those negative emotions does me harm. Having my emotions in check became extremely important to me.
My most important lesson was learning that ‘what consumes your mind, controls your life.’ The negative feelings and emotions I was consumed by, were the ones controlling my life. My mind had control over my feelings and my decisions.
The importance of a healthy spirit
And when it comes to my spirit, the innermost part of us that relies on God, was also broken. The emotions that I mentioned above were controlled by my mind. These negative emotions were not allowing me to live a life filled with joy, love, peace, faith, self-control or any of the fruit of the spirits that we were given.
I wasn’t feeding health to my mind or spirit.
I didn’t feel healthy until I finally started working towards feeding health to every area of my life. It was never perfect of course, because we will always face tough times in life that might make it hard, but I lived a life where I felt really good, I felt healthy. I was careful with what I fed my mind and spirit.
It wasn’t until a few days ago, I found myself feeling lonely and having a hard time coping with life because I felt so far away from friends and family. It’s when I asked myself, “Are you living a healthy life?” I meant this as a whole, not just physically.
Feeding ourselves health
Just like we feed ourselves nutrition that will make us physically healthy, we need to feed our mind and spirit what makes them healthy.
This will look different for everyone, but I believe when we are doing what we love, when we are living with passion, and we are living a life with no resentments, we will have found a way to make ourselves mentally and spiritually healthy.
When we practice gratitude, forgiveness, and self-control-we will feel peace, and peace leads to joy. It doesn’t mean we are problems free or that everything is perfect, it means we pay little attention to what is wrong in life and instead we practice gratitude, which ultimately leads to a life of joy.
In my case, I try to practice those things I love that make me happy. I try to practice forgiveness, gratitude and things that will bring me peace. And as I reflect on why I was feeling so lonely and down, I realized I wasn’t feeding my health in every area of my life. I haven’t been doing enough of the things I love, like daily work outs, listening to worship music, talking with friends and family, exploring new places, reading and many more of the those things that bring me joy.
I haven’t been living anxiety free or joyful every day. In fact, I’m openly saying it because it’s normal for us to go through phases that make us feel gloomy. The important factor is that we recognize it and pick ourselves back up again. It is important that we feed health to our lives.
So my job today and on is to feed my health in every area of my life. I’m off to doing the things I love and off to do my best to be in peace? What about you?
Are you healthy from the inside out?
How do you feed your physical, emotional, and spiritual health? What are those things you love that help you feel healthy and alive? What are those emotions and feelings that are holding you back from feeling peace? Does your mind have control of your life? Do you feel you are feeding health to every area of your life?