What Healthy Living Really Looks Like
23 May 2016
I wanted to share something a little more “real” with you today.
I am concerned that we are starting to lose sight of the true meaning of what it means to be healthy. Social media (and by this I mean all of us who work behind the scenes creating content) paints a very pretty picture of health to make it more enticing for its viewers (I am no exception). Of course this is in a way a good thing because when healthy living is perceived as appealing and trendy, then people are more likely to join in and get themselves healthy too – so that's great because more and more people are positively being influenced and likewise influencing others to adopt a healthier approach to life. Thumbs up to this, and I am happy to be a part of a community that is changing lives.
Where my problem comes in is with all the highly edited, filtered and attractive imagery, which has transformed health and balance into this idealistic “perfection” lifestyle where incredible bodies, runs on the beach, yoga overlooking a spectacular view and magnificently prepared meals are shown to be part of daily life. Yes the principle behind the images are what is key – but I worry that people are starting to believe that this is what their lifestyle must in fact look like, otherwise its not right.
Let’s be real, most of the images you see, no matter how uplifting or positive have been snapped many many times before the final shot is selected. What appears to be a seemingly effortless image, required tremendous amounts of time, effort and editing to look so effortless. Those quick and easy meals you see – trust me not so quick and easy! Many hours are spent optimising lighting to have those images look as beautiful as they do. So don’t be fooled.
The real life behind the images you see is very different to how you may perceive things to be. We all want to tell the best possible story, because after all who wants to hear about the bad or average stuff right? But truth is, everyday life is not always a scenic run in the mountains, smoothie bowls or beach yoga – real life is that coffee you spilt this morning, long hours at work, the run you were supposed to take but didn’t because you couldn’t get out of bed, the salad you slapped together for lunch that looks nothing worthy of a photo.
Real life is not always feeling your best - of course there are good days and great days – but then there are those days where you would rather stay in bed than face the world. I have those days too believe me! What I’m trying to say here, is that real life is NOT an Instagram feed, so don’t compare your everyday moments to the highlight reel of someone else’s life! No one’s life is an Instagram feed – and that’s ok. Having not so good days is really ok. Not exercising every single day is ok too, so is indulging or not sticking 100% to your healthy lifestyle.
You, we, all of us are human after all – we make mistakes, we are not always 100% healthy – sometimes we have off days, and sometimes we feel lazy and want to do nothing. And that’s really ok. So what if your life isn’t full of chia puddings and fitness trends, you are doing the best you can with the time and resources you have and that is great! You should be proud of yourself for trying to be the healthiest you can be – after all no one can tell you what your version of healthy looks like, except you.
Health is a journey, a continuous one that we need to work at all the time – sometimes we drift off-course, and sometimes we’re on the ball, but either way is ok. You have to experience the bad to enjoy the good, you have to make mistakes sometimes to figure out what’s truly best for you, and sometimes deviating from your health path is the only way to make you balance out again so that you can feel motivated and reinspired to persist along your healthy journey.
You’re doing great! Never forget that. This is your journey, your pace – you set the rules so do it your way!
Yours in Health Always