Minimalism allowed me to recognize the value of space in my environment. I felt clarity and peace in an uncluttered room. Space allowed me feel serene, calm, quiet. I’d say it even led to happy.
Then came mealtime, and my overwhelm began. Food and nutrition loomed in my life like an enormous burden, even though I cared about my health as much as my home. I wanted to take the next step forward with nutrition, like I did for my environment when I started removing the unnecessary.
After practicing minimalism, I understood that the things surrounding me were reflections of my values and aspirations. I owned the food dehydrator and vegetable spiralizer and protein powder because I truly cared about my health. I was a hard worker, and I was willing to go the extra mile to make healthy meals.
And then there were the mason jars. My pantry overflowed with mason jars. Not only were they artisanal and trendy (as I wanted to be), they were filled with all of the antioxidants and super foods and promises I had spent my money on. Sigh. Truth be told, the taste of maca powder makes me gag.
I remember that phase of my life and am so glad I spent time there. I learned a lot from the frustration of having none of those things lead me closer to my health goals. But because I failed, I learned, and I kept trying, because we all try every day, even if trying means sitting there not knowing what to do.
Over time, I started to understand that food and home and fitness are not separate parts of my life, but are interconnected like a web. I am a whole person who needs a whole approach to living well. What started to make me healthy was space, and the courage to let go.
My favorite meal became anything made from whole food that was simple to prepare and enjoy. Followed by enjoying it without guilt. Followed by moving on to other pursuits when mealtime was over. End of story.
I no longer fill the space between meals with planning the next meal, grocery shopping, reading food blogs, etc. I put food back in its place, which is a smaller place in my life than I had allowed it to be in the past.
I’m starting to believe that health comes from the space in between meals. Is it filled up with engaging work, movement, friends, connection, or creativity? Food is fuel for your life, it is not your life itself. Just like decluttering is fuel for pursuing your life’s purpose. Your purpose is greater than throwing things away, and your health is more than just your next meal. Keep trying, even if you are sitting there not knowing what to do.