Food, Body & Life are your best friends, not your enemies

One of the most important mindset shifts you can make in order to develop a healthy and fertile relationship not only with Life, but also with your body and even with food (that then will translate into a healthy and fertile body according to the “as above-so below” principle) is to replace “enemy” with “friend” mindset, in other words to transition from a relationship based on fear, hate and control to a relationship based on love, trust and compassion.

This might sound simple and obvious, yet if we look at what concretely it means to be friends with Life, body and food, you might be surprised to realize that you have been spending (most of) your life with your enemy – looking at it every time you look into the mirror and even ingesting it every time you eat. Any wonder you are in constant fight-or-flight stress mode? By now you know the detrimental effect of stress on digestion, tissue repair, fat burning – and also reproduction. The good news is, it is in YOUR hands to change that relationship in an instant.

Friend or Foe?

In order to assess where you are currently at, just think about how you treat a person who is your enemy as opposed to someone who is your best friend – and how this person treats you (or how you would expect them to treat you).

If someone is your enemy:

  • You do not trust them
  • You hate/dislike/are angry at them
  • You are afraid of them
  • Maybe you feel like a victim in their presence
  • You avoid or ignore them
  • Maybe you secretly envy them
  • You feel stressed or uncomfortable around them
  • You try to cause them harm, punish them and/or put obstacles in their way
  • You lie to them
  • You act behind their back
  • You complain and/or talk badly about and to them
  • You judge them
  • You do not see anything “good” in them
  • You do not expect anything “good” or fair treatment from them – you are suspicious
  • You expect them to treat you in the same way

If someone is your best friend:

  • You trust them
  • You love them
  • You are at ease / relaxed with them
  • You take good care of them and have only their best interest in mind
  • You are honest and open with them
  • You talk nicely to and about them
  • You are compassionate and gentle and forgive mistakes easily
  • You accept them for who they are
  • You see the best in them and allow them the freedom to simply be themselves
  • You enjoy being with them and have fun together
  • You support them to be the best they can be
  • You expect them to treat you in the same way

Now apply this to the relationship you have with Life, your body & food. What does it FEEL like for you?

If Life is your enemy

  • You feel punished by what it puts on your plate
  • You are angry about the pain and suffering it makes you go through
  • You are afraid of the future, expecting more pain and suffering
  • You complain a lot about your circumstances
  • You expect bad things to happen to you
  • You question the meaning of it all
  • You probably engage in some sort of self-destructive or self-sabotaging behavior

If Life is your best friend

  • You look for the treasure even in seemingly negative events
  • You are curious about why you are experiencing what you are experiencing and what you can learn from it
  • You are grateful for all that you have and can derive joy even from ordinary life experiences
  • You show respect to Life and all that it produces
  • You remain relaxed and trust that things will eventually make sense
  • You keep your heart open even if it hurts
  • You have a deep yearning to live and love fully and engage in life-supporting behavior

If your body is your enemy:

  • You are angry at or sad about your body for being the way it is. You feel that it is failing you punishing you. It is the reason you are miserable.
  • It scares you: You are afraid that you might not be able to control it or that it will let you down
  • You don’t trust it:
    • If you allowed yourself to eat without controlling, counting calories, or exercising, you would not be able to stop eating and become fat.
    • Your body is weak and without taking your medicine / supplements it would not function well.
    • Trusting your inner voice seems a dangerous thing to do
  • You are disconnected from it: You cannot feel the signals coming from your body (i.e. hunger/satiation) or are not able to distinguish physical hunger from emotional hunger. As a consequence, you do not trust those signals.
  • You take revenge: Yesterday you did not have enough willpower and ate too much, as a punishment you run a few extra miles today (or eat less)
  • You are ashamed of your body and often feel bad in your skin. You try to hide your body as much as possible.
  • You judge your body and talk badly about it (in front of others or in silence to yourself).
  • You punish your body by withdrawing love from it, attacking it verbally or even hurting it physically, overworking it, feeding it junk or not providing it with what it needs.
  • You expect your body to always work against you. If you are sick or in pain you are annoyed and try to silence the symptoms with medication.

If your body is your best friend:

  • You are in awe at your body’s intelligence and wisdom, the way it works day and night without your conscious intervention to keep you alive and in homeostasis (balance).
  • You trust that your body is perfectly able to self-regulate appetite and hunger, just like you trust it to regulate your blood pressure, heart beat, bod temperature, tissue repair, digestion, its ability to grow a baby… You do not try to control it or take over its “job”. You simply make sure it gets all it needs to do what it knows best to do: maintain you in optimal health and fertility.
  • You actively listen to signals coming from your body, acknowledge them, explore them and challenge them by acting upon them and veryfing results, thus training your “intuition muscle” to become better and better at distinguishing true, self-love-inspired intuition from fear-based, self-destructive cravings or wishful thinking
  • You love your body and take good care of it. You give it all that it needs to function optimally: love, attention, high quality food, sensual pleasure, time, movement…
  • You are realistic about your body, accept it for what it is now, even if you do not particularly like it yet. You talk kindly to it and show compassion, even if things are not ideal or “mistakes” happen
  • You trust that your body is strong and can deal also with imperfect foods or situations
  • You enjoy your body and are not afraid of pleasure
  • You see the uniqueness and beauty in your body rather than comparing it to others.
  • You expect your body to be on your side. You look at symptoms as your body’s language to communicate with you and listen to them instead of simply ignoring or suppressing them.

If food is your enemy:

  • You do not trust it: Food to you (or certain foods) is intrinsically “bad”. You avoid “bad” foods or maybe even whole food groups, because they are just waiting to cause you harm (= make you fat or sick).
  • You are afraid of it or certain substances in it (like calories, fat or toxins…) and try to control food quantity or quality.
  • You limit yourself at meals or try to compensate a meal with exercise.
  • Food makes you feel bad or guilty. Maybe you would like to get rid of it again after having eaten…
  • It makes you angry when you are hungry or have appetite (again), that as a human being you have to eat at all or that you have to eat certain foods for health reasons (i.e. meat).
  • It makes you sad that you cannot eat certain things.
  • You often feel stressed or anxious around food, especially with other people around.
  • You might avoid eating with others or want to know in advance what’s on the menu.
  • You eat in secret or hide food.
  • You lie about what you are doing with food.
  • You eat very fast and mindless.
  • You do not care about how your food is grown nor how it is prepared.
  • „As much as necessary, as little as possible“

If food is your best friend:

  • You are aware of and grateful for how food takes care of you: It provides your body with what it needs to stay alive and function. This allows you to give the best of you to the world in return. It nourishes you physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually.
  • You take care of food: You make sure it is grown with love and respect, you treat it well, choose it carefully, prepare it with love, do not waste it, eat it consciously and are grateful for it
  • Food is a source of pleasure and relaxation and you can dive deeply into both without feeling guilty.
  • Food allows you to connect with others.
  • You trust that your food is good for you.

As you can see, a simple shift in mindset will have wide implications! The way we do one thing is the way we do everything. The way you relate to Life is the way you relate to other people, to yourself, your body and even to food. Changing your attitude towards Life will affect your attitude towards body and food (and vice versa).

If you do no longer want to live with your enemy, but with your best friend (and honestly, who would not want that?), I invite you to simply try on the belief that Life actually is on your side and has only your best interest in mind. That things are happening FOR you, not to you or against you, and that they are indeed happening for a reason. And then see what that does for you. Just pay attention to the way you feel. Whenever you catch yourself feeling tense, contracted, afraid, angry, etc., ask yourself the question: “What if Life (my body, food) was my best friend? In what way would I behave differently? In what way would my expectations change?”

This simple practice makes it possible to shift your perspective – and as a consequence your biochemistry, metabolism and whole experience of life – into a completely different dimension – effortlessly and instantly. You might have to remind yourself again and again in different situations, yet if you practice long enough, eventually it will become your new default mode – and by then EVERYTHING will have changed (for the better ;)).

Sometimes the questions we ask are more powerful than the answers and simply asking them opens up doors we didn’t even know existed.

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