The week of Easter, I will personally be embarking on a 2-week nutritional detox rooted in the wisdom of Ayurveda once again.
My readiness for this particular protocol did not come overnight. When I started my formal studies in nutrition, I would become totally enamored with vigorous nutritional detoxification programs before I was truly ready for them. My body would be gripping the entire way through, I’d fantasize about all the yummy foods I would eat when the protocol was over, and I was not ‘gentle’ transitioning back into the world of “regular” eating.
This is part of the reason I purposely don’t offer one signature detox program in my counseling practice. Our levels of readiness and our bodies are all different. Together, my clients and I carefully structure a dietary protocol that will support them the most, taking their life and dietary circumstances into account.
If you are thinking about seasonal detoxification this Spring, I want to equip you with 4 important questions to ensure a success before you begin.
1.) Can I cultivate Curiosity first and foremost? When it comes to detox, many people get hard with themselves and expect perfection, weight loss, clear skin, transformation, etc. Instead, try curiosity. Get curious about how you’d feel without sugar or caffeine. Get curious how your body would respond to only plant foods, or juices, or a mono diet. Take notes. Listen to the information your body gives you. What way of eating has always piqued your curiosity?
2.) Am I Committed? Detoxes ask us to put our big girl pants on and commit to endure and to stay with it when it feels hard. Can you commit to creating space for yourself, to saying empowered “no’s, to giving yourself space to breathe and feel? Commit to something.
3.) Can I Surrender to the process? Allow yourself to fully experience full range of emotional or physical sensations. Let yourself feel lousy or irritable or tired. Allow the body the rest it needs. Healing can take many different shapes: awareness and insight, emotional or physical pain, general malaise or fatigue, or no sensations at all. Surrender to it all. Release the reigns of control. The body knows exactly what to do.
4.) What about Love? I remember a friend once saying, “Sometimes we need to do the work, despite ourselves.” This doesn’t mean we have to muscle our way through things. This means that you are human, and may not FEEL like doing something. Do the work anyway…with steady LOVE for yourself. Call yourself out when old patterns and stories in the mind start cycling through. Can you love the person going through the detox? Can you infuse the practice with some compassion? Nobody likes a bully.
There you have it. 4 important ingredients: Curiosity, Commitment, Surrender, and Love
If you are flirting with the idea of cleaning up your diet with the seasonal ritual of nutritional detoxification, I know you can do this with wise and compassionate focus. Take action and ground yourself with these 4 questions.
with love and respect,
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