What does “Lifestyle” even mean?

In Ayurveda you will hear a lot about Ayurvedic Lifestyle and making sure you are living the right lifestyle for you.   In Claudia Welch’s book, Balance Your Hormones, Balance Your Life, she says that the three most important things to focus on for hormone health are a Healthy Diet, Lifestyle and Stress Management.  We’ll come back to the other two later but for now, what does “Lifestyle” even mean?

In a nutshell, Lifestyle means all of that which is our life.  Food is the healthy diet part.  Stress management is all the things we do to take time out and recover.  And, Lifestyle is everything else!  Here are some examples:  what time you go to bed/what time you get up; what your biggest meal of the day is; your morning routines (such as oil massage, using a tongue scraper, etc.); what kind of exercise you do and how often; your spiritual practices; your relationships; your job; your leisure activities…everything!

So, you see, its huge!  Being huge doesn’t mean it has to be scary or overwhelming.  It means that in every detail of our life we have some choices (even when we don’t feel like we do!).  It means that we can live a conscious life and inasmuch as we can make choices, we can make them with awareness of our individual needs.  When we are our best, we can be there for others more fully.

All the choices we can make and all the daily routines and health practices we choose to incorporate into our day adds up to give us the most fertile ground for our growth and for handling stress.  We are not perfect.  I am not perfect!  No one is asking us to be perfect.  But, we can make choices to better ourselves, to feel our best and to create the best environment for ourselves that we can.

Here are some things we can choose.  We can choose to not watch t.v. in bed or be on our computers/cell phones while in bed.  We can choose to take a warm bath at night to help us sleep.  We can choose to exercise to our appropriate intensity.  We can choose to eat our biggest meal of the day at lunch.  We can choose to get up a little earlier in the morning for some movement and quiet time.  We can choose to wear colours that will help to balance our imbalances.

Understanding the Ayurvedic types of Vata, Pitta and Kapha can give you practical tips on how to tweak your day-to-day life in order to optimize your health and vitality.  If you would like some tips or to talk to someone about where you can start making lifestyle changes to better suit you we can set up an appointment for a consultation.

From my own experience, and from watching others, if you feel you can’t make changes in your life, here is a tip. Find the smallest, easiest and less scariest thing that you CAN change and do it.  When you’ve incorporated that, be open for some other change you would like to see.  Don’t worry about all the things that seem impossible right now.  Making it happen or letting it happen – things will unfold.