what it really takes to do the unthinkable
In 2018 I was well into my holistic health journey, trying to figure out all of the things that my body had become hypersensitive to. Lotions and shampoos that I’d been using for years triggered blister-like sores. In a matter of weeks, every toiletry (down to the toothpaste) and cosmetic was swapped out for a gentler replacement.
And it didn’t stop there. I suspected that some of my favorite foods had me feeling unwell too. It was around that time that my doctor and I decided that I would go on an elimination diet.
In case you aren’t familiar with it, an elimination diet is a period of time where you avoid certain foods--often common allergens or foods that you suspect are inflammatory to you. In my case, I eliminated all common food allergens as well as caffeine (with the exception of green tea), tomatoes, citrus, and even some spices.
And I did this over a 3-month period that spanned both the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays.
It was the strictest eating I have ever done.
And it was the best I have ever felt.
I didn’t arrive at the idea of doing something so restrictive right away. I first learned about elimination dieting while studying for my health coaching certification. Despite the amazing results I read in one case study after the next, I distinctively remember saying, “I could never do this.”
It was beyond extreme to me. The logistics alone seemed daunting. One of our teachers even advised us to try an elimination diet, to better understand the process and what a future client might experience. It made sense to do one before ever advising a client to experiment with it.
A year or so later, I was ready and grateful to be doing one myself. To this day, there are foods that I haven’t returned to. And there are recipes that I still use from the special cookbook. My diet has changed so much since becoming a coach and entering a community of integrative health experts.
But I didn’t arrive here overnight.
I tell this story because there was a time when I could not have imagined myself committing to something this big—investing additional time for food planning and preparation, meal journaling, cooking new recipes, and upleveling my pantry contents. And that was just the beginning.
But I felt a nudge to go in that direction and do the unthinkable. In hindsight I can see how much was gained through the process. I didn’t realize what my body had been tolerating until I decided to get curious and make some changes.
And it all started with doing what I thought I would never do.
It no longer felt restrictive because I was ready for it.
So here’s this week’s inquiry:
Where are you currently telling yourself “I could never ______”? What kind of care are you putting off until later? Often the things that we’re putting off are EXACTLY the place where our attention is needed.
How will you know when you are ready for it?
What’s one small step you could take in that direction?
It doesn’t need to be as drastic as a 12-week elimination.
Remember, it was 12 more months from the time I learned about it before I considered a diet for myself.
And, just because it feels like an impossible goal doesn’t mean it’s not meant for you. Notice what keeps coming up and just keep moving ahead.
Even if it takes a year before you feel fully ready.
Alright, hit reply. Tell me what feels impossible. Tell me what you are taking away from this. What’s standing out?
And if you want to know what kinds of products I use or what’s in my panty, I can tell you all about that too.
Because the products I’m using aren’t just for the super-sensitive among us. Your skin is your biggest organ. Thousands of substances enter your body through the skin and gut.
It just makes sense to go cleaner.
Talk to you all soon.