In the aftermath of my divorce and work-related woes, I read a book called The Mayo Clinic Guide to Stress-Free Living which detailed the importance of gratitude in living a happy, less-stressed life. Although this was not the first time I’d read or heard about the role gratitude plays in a positive outlook, the author did an excellent job of laying out the scientific rationale for practicing gratitude. Since then, I’ve been conscious — especially during potentially challenging times — of being grateful for this astonishing life.
Health is a cycle. It’s a continuous feedback-loop that can move in a positive direction, a negative direction, or be stagnant.
Recently, I connected with Fabian and Veronika, who run a minimalist magazine called The Elementarist. They asked to do an interview with me as part of a series highlighting how different people apply minimalism in their lives and work. Because I haven’t talked explicitly about minimalism in a post on Minimal Wellness yet, I thought it would be nice to cross-post the interview. I recommend checking out the beautifully formatted version of the interview on their site.
Travel is a beautiful opportunity to experience a different reality, to challenge what you truly need, and to inject life with some uncertainty. Being away from home is also a classic roadblock for people in terms of living a healthy lifestyle, but it needn’t be.
Traditional nutrition advice includes statements such as “breakfast is the most important meal of the day,” and “as long as you don’t over-consume calories, it doesn’t matter when you eat”. Unfortunately, both of these long-standing beliefs are flawed. The latest iteration of the US Dietary Guidelines no longer explicitly encourages breakfast consumption, as the vast majority of the science supporting eating breakfast as a weight-management tool has been de-bunked. And it turns out that meal timing does have an impact on overall health.
We all have things we want to do, create, or be. Regardless of what our desires are, making them a reality requires that we overcome fear and resistance, a process which isn’t easy.
A few weeks ago a reader asked me if I would consider writing about minimalist beauty routines because there are so many confusing products on the market. The request was humorous as I’m one of the least qualified people to talk about the best or most “minimal” beauty products. However, the request intrigued me and as I pondered my response, a few things became clear.
There is something magical about being outside, surrounded by nature — grass, rocks, trees, water, wildlife, dirt, fresh air. The natural world has the ability to calm, center, and clear our minds on our most scattered days. I feel blessed to have had the opportunity to spend many cumulative months immersed in nature, camping, backpacking, boating, hiking, and exploring. For me, those adventures coupled with emerging research, have illuminated the transformational power of being outside.
One of the most enduring aspects of my personal wellness journey is a continual effort to find balance and avoid extremism. The health and fitness industry is permeated by black and white, good or bad thinking, but I believe it’s in The Gray that most people find true wellness. The ability to not obsess over diet, exercise, weight, or appearance — but to still have those things matter and have importance — is essential to optimal health.
Living within your gastrointestinal tract are 100 trillion microbes from over 1000 different species, collectively referred to as the gut microbiome. Recent research into the microbial world within our bodies has illuminated many previously unknown connections to our overall health. Indeed, the human body is an ecosystem with many sub-ecosystems (such as the gut), and just like the environment, when one of those ecosystems malfunctions, it compromises the entire system.