A YOGI CHA BLOG
The baggage we bring into adulthood
In my latest podcast episode, I speak about the baggage we bring with us into relationships.
One of the things I emphasise there is how much we identify with what we have become accustomed to.
When it comes to our bodies and our mental capacities, it is the exact same thing. It only really becomes an issue when the gap between our baggage and what is actually happening becomes bigger. Let’s take our relationship to food for instance. I might have gotten used to the fact that I can eat rather large meals and that the feeling of hunger is absolutely not good for me. It’s even alarming. For many of us, this is a belief we carry with us from adolescence. When we became teens and our bodies began to change, we stepped out of the KAPHA time of life and into the PITTA time. Hormones and muscles became very active and we got clearer on our preferences as well. We started craving certain foods that we did not even know existed as children. We see it quite easily in teenage boys. They can all of a sudden take in enormous amounts of food and parents might even joke about “where does it all go?” since you won’t see any traces of weight gain. So for many of our young (and less young too) adult years, we are used to eating big meals. We often bring with us from those earlier times, ideas about how important it is to eat. To be honest, many of those ideas come from parents who feel the need to know that they are doing a good job.
We do need to eat but actually, we probably need more at this time in society, to learn what hunger feels like. I was brought up with the belief that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Today though, research has shown that this isn’t really true. It has been discovered that our mental capacity is heightened by a slight sensation of hunger.
I was listening to a professor at Harvard medical school explaining that we can reduce the speed of aging by reducing our eating window in the day. He only eats once a day (!). Now, I do not recommend that because, well I would not like to do that for me. However, it’s a great example of ideas we thought were true that might not be so true.
And this is how we end up with a problematic relationship to food in adulthood. Life is movement and this means that unless we are willing to adapt to the changes, we will experience the gap between what we believe to be true and what is. As we age, our digestive fire decreases and our muscles capacity to stay intact as well. It does not mean that we must put on weight and that our bodies must weaken. But it means that we need to let go of the ideas that were true for us at one point. We need to disconnect from the identity we had before. So we might need to eat less in each meal and maybe we need to be more vigilant about exercising. Your body pardoned your inconsistency in your 20’s but it will not do so in your 40’s and 50’s. So as you grow older, you need to detach from certain beliefs about yourself. That is one thing. The other is that if you started taking an interest in your health when it was still not showing any signs of alertness, the decrease of capacities will happen later and will be less dramatic. So that you won’t actually experience too much of the difficulties to adjust to it.
Invest in yourself while it’s a question of prevention, not when you’re trying to cure. Because curing is always more expensive.
Hi, I’m Charlotte (Yogi Cha). I’m a yoga teacher with a degree in clinical psychology. I’ve always had a deep curiosity toward eastern and western approaches to understanding the mind, and the ming/body union. You’ll find me in the lovely Canggu Bali, nestled amongst coconuts, palm trees and sunshine 🥥🌴🌞
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