While I haven’t been perfect in other areas of my life… health has been the area I have felt most imperfect in. And have gone to the greatest depth of understanding, possibly because of that.
The beauty is that there are so many more depths to explore. I know that it will be impossible for me to explore it all in this life – but I’m going to sink my teeth on as much deep universal wisdom as I can and share it with the world.
Here are my top 5 mistakes I’ve made with health – which have been pivotal in changing my limited views on health and opened me up to new possibilities. The best way to learn is to learn from mistakes, so hopefully you’ll learn from mine!
What I did: I took all advice on board without any discernment. This included unsolicited advice, practitioner advice and more. There was an assumption that if I didn’t try everything, I might miss out on my potential ‘cure’. I tried random creams, alternative medicine – with some of those suggestions actually leading me to getting worse because I didn’t consider my body and my situation. Some worked, some didn’t, some made me worse.
Where did I go wrong: I never checked in with myself, connecting with my intuitive knowing whether it was true for me to pursue. In fact, most of the time, I never even considered developing my own intuitive knowing – and assumed that others are a higher authority who knew better than me, for me.
What did I learn: I have an inner knowing and can develop a sense of what’s best for me when faced with options. This learning was presented to me when an intuitive friend mentioned to me about hemp cream. At this point in time, I rejected all advice (especially creams) after disappointment after disappointment. But, in this case, an inner part jumped up & I felt a ‘yes’. And it turned out to be a good support tool at the time. I have learnt to listen to that inner ‘yes’, ‘no’, ‘neutral’. It took time to develop that relationship, but it was worth it.
*** MISTAKE 2: Pushing an ideological health regime on my body ***
What I did: I had an idea of the ideal diet and healing regime – and didn’t listen to whether my body responded well or not to it. In my case, I was working to be raw-food vegan and possibly later a fruitarian through to breatharian. Without realising or seeing it, I was getting sicker and sicker – starting to develop allergies to key foods in a vegan diet. I had ideas of what was the perfect diet to have, including healing supplements that were non-pharmaceuticals – rather than checking in with my body and what was really happening. I lost a tremendous amount of weight, had infected rash on almost every inch of my body & I suffered greatly from itching, pain/agony & brain-fog – for a period of ~1 year.
Where did I go wrong: I believed the books I read, and never got grounded with feedback from my body about whether things were working. This is no different to me pushing my ideas and opinions onto someone else (my body) and running roughshod over their response or needs.
What did I learn: There’s ideals and then there’s reality. Ideals are lovely and sound convincing – but there’s nothing compared to direct feedback and reality to find things that work. What works for some, doesn’t necessarily work for others, let alone myself. This is not to demonise veganism or fruitarian-ism – but to listen and get feedback from your body ALWAYS. Sometimes pharmaceuticals are highly effective in easing that suffering with tolerable consequences, and you can weigh up that benefit/consequence ratio without guilt.
*** MISTAKE 3: Trying to figure it all out myself ***
What I did: After a period of continual disappointment following to other’s advice, I decided that I was the only one I could trust. So, I went about building my knowledge through books and websites, not realising how much I was filtering through my own narrowed lens. I also stunted my growth and healing for quite a few years because of this.
Where did I go wrong: I didn’t want to feel disappointment and helplessness. And I definitely didn’t want to be vulnerable or be under control of another person. I wanted to figure it all out myself. So, I avoided any input that I couldn’t control which stunted growth & depth dramatically.
What did I learn: While it’s important to take responsibility for my health, it's also next to impossible to seeing outside my own limited viewpoints, until someone offers a new piece of outside perspectives. My biggest growth occurred when I moved from relying on books only to doing group work and getting coached. This is because a higher perspective is just something outside of your limited viewpoints.
*** MISTAKE 4: Overlooking the simple things ***
What I did: Discounted suggestions such as drinking more water or reducing stress. These suggestions were given to me long ago, but I couldn’t ‘receive’ them at the time.
Where did I go wrong: Developed a tunnel vision that negated simple, obvious advice because it was too… simple and obvious. I had tried so many things, that I believed that ‘cure’ had to be something innovative, new, out-there. A miracle, perhaps. So, if anyone gave me something simple or mainstream – I discounted it.
What did I learn: That thinking I knew best was actually hindering me. I’m talking about my ‘ego mind’ rather than my ‘intuitive self’. And when I dropped what I thought I know (and I’ve collected a lot of ‘knowledge’ over the years), then I could open up to possibility and truth.
*** MISTAKE 5: Treating my set of symptoms (aka disease label) as an entity to get rid of ***
What I did: I’ve had eczema and allergies since I was a 5 week old baby, with varying degrees of health (from all over my body and infected to completely clear). For many years, whenever there was an outbreak, I would be in this state of figuring out how to get ‘rid’ of this problem. In fact, I would reference it as something separate to me and imposed upon me.
Where did I go wrong: As soon as I thought of my eczema as something separate from me, I adopted an attitude as if it was a separate entity doing ‘unto me’. I also then assumed that I didn’t understand what to do, because I was separate. I would become really desperate and reactive.
What did I learn: I learnt to view my range of symptoms not like a germ to kill or an intruder to expel, but instead as my body highlighting that it needs support and nurturing. Just because we label a set of symptoms into a disease, doesn’t mean it exists as an entity, it’s just providing potential clues on what the root cause may be… But I needed to shift my view into finding out the things my body truly needs to be supported for health.
I hope my 5 mistakes and corresponding learnings help you in some way to reconnecting to yourself and what you need to enjoy health more in your life.