Quoterday

If you satisfy your body but don’t satisfy your heart and your mind, are you satisfied?

-Thich Nhat Hanh, How to Love

Many times I fall into the trap of satisfying my body while neglecting my mind and heart.  For example, sometimes I eschew opportunities to spend with friends because I obsess about my nutrition.

“They want to eat fried chicken, bro.  Don’t do it.  It’s a one-way ticket to Fat Town.”

In an ideal world, I would make the healthiest food choices at all times, meet up with my friends in restaurants, eat nothing in their company, and enjoy the bottomless willpower required to do it all pain-free.  

Yet when my friend treats me to a chocolate muffin at Starbucks or another friend nudges me to try a bite of fried chicken, it sometimes pays to oblige.  Shared experiences with people I care about enrich my heart even if my body doesn’t directly benefit.

On the flip side, many people (myself included) heap abuse upon our bodies for the sake of easing our mental and emotional restlessness.  We down shots and beers to relax our nerves or to feel like we belong in social situations. We stress-eat chips, cookies, pizza, chicken tenders, or whatever else is in arm’s reach after a difficult workday.  We spark up a cigarette when we “just need a break.”

Since my alcohol abstinence started three months ago, my greatest difficulty has not been the taste of alcohol, nor the hangovers, nor the challenge of ordering sparkling waters in bars.  Rather, my greatest challenge is addressing the myriad of negative thoughts that alcohol once kept at bay.

It’s not easy to come to terms with thoughts of self-consciousness, boredom, or “not being good enough.”

Yet the longer I sit with these thoughts without acquiescing to the desire to imbibe, the more I realize that these are only thoughts.  They are not necessarily true nor permanent.  They can change.  Nay, they will change.

The longer I abstain, the more I can nourish my mind, my body, and my heart at the same time.  I can be the best version of myself when I give my body, mind, and heart the space to develop in synchrony.

It will take time, but every minute spent simultaneously nurturing this trifecta of self is worth the effort.

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I strive for uninhibited harmony between mind, body, and heart.  But my life is currently hazy like these Korean mountains.

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