routines as art

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Your health and your life are the same thing.  When you create a life you create the image of your health and vice versa.  The colors you use to paint your health will illuminate your life.

We tend to think of our health as something that we do at the gym and then there’s everything else.  The little decisions that you make during the day ARE your health.  Think of your life/health as a fresco.  Painting a fresco is a creative and ancient technique.  When you paint a fresco, you apply thin layer upon thin layer until the fresco is indistinguishable from the wall itself.  It lasts.  A fresco endures.  The tiny decisions you make throughout your day are the thin layers.  It all matters.  It determines the image.

This is where the routines come in.  I spoke a little about routines as roots in my last post.  Now, I want to switch up the metaphor so that you can think of your routines as the nearly translucent layers that build up to be your life.  Through these daily decisions you create the art of your life, the beauty of your health.  Or not.  Health stripping routines also create an image and become a part of you. The image just may not be what you intend.

If the daily applications of color are only splashed through with 30 minutes or so of health seeking behavior, the image will be inconsistent and distorted.  An image layered with nourishment with a few “bad” decisions can maintain its integrity far more easily. If you nourish your health and your freedom, once a week doing something a little less nurturing to that idea doesn’t have nearly the same impact as if you do the opposite.

What does this look like in practice?

I can show tell you a little about my routines, the thin layers that I use to create the work of art that is my health.

I am in bed by 10-11 every night.  My sleep quality is the base layer.

When I wake, I have a simple routine.  I do my dental health routine, then my neti pot, then I move.  This can be anything from some light stretching to an outdoor hike.  I dry brush and take a cold shower.

Each meal during the day is in keeping with my evolutionary heritage so that every once in a while I can have corn tortilla tacos or coconut milk ice cream or something else that strikes my fancy.

In the evenings, I like to sweep.  (It’s a funny meditative habit I picked up from my dad.)  Depending on the season, I’ll knit, write, collage…something crafty with my hands.  Then, I get my herbal infusion ready for the next day.

I try to laugh whenever I can and value my relationships.  I do something small each day that makes that day special.  Whether it is trying a new tea flavor to inspecting what is currently blooming or take pictures of the sky.

Nothing is particularly flashy.  Nothing stands alone as “the thing I do to be healthy”.  These are the fine layers of habit.  After time, together they create a lasting beauty that is far greater than the sum of the parts.

I would LOVE to hear about any suggestions or any little ways that you paint a beautiful life.

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