Some people promise that if you go vegan you will .... be skinny, never have health problems, whatever. You know, reach Vegan Nirvana.
You may feel disappointed in yourself because you haven't gotten there. You may still be overweight. You may still get sick from time to time. You may find yourself falling off the wagon.
The reality is what happens for you is an individual experience. There are too many contributing factors.
- What is your body type? The skinny as a rail type? Or the big-boned type?
- Where are you starting from? Decades of self-abuse? Or just need to take it up a notch?
- What is your health like now? One foot in the grave and the other on a banana peel? Or minimal health problems?
Then there is your overall approach to being healthy:
- What other healthy lifestyle habits do you have? Couch potato who drinks, smokes with a bad attitude? Or active, positive, non-drinker with a strong spiritual practice?
- What type of vegan food are you eating? Oreos, Twizzlers, french fries and pasta? Or greens, fresh fruit, mostly raw?
- How MUCH do you eat? You can even overeat healthy food.
You get the picture.
What you eat is only one part of the puzzle. It is a very important piece and you will certainly see changes in many aspects of your life once you eliminate animal products from your diet. But it is not the whole picture.
Start or get back to keeping a journal to record what you eat, what your thoughts and experiences are and what your progress is. Then examine and review what you write from time to time. Be honest with yourself. Where are you stuck in old unhealthy patterns? Where do you need to move to the next level? What triggers you to engage in unhealthy things? How can you avoid those triggers?
At the same time be sure to notice your successes. How have you progressed? What changes have you noticed? How has your life been impacted for the better?
Your personal journey and experience will be uniquely yours. Don't compare yourself to others.
Let go of expectations of Vegan Nirvana. It doesn't exist. Instead focus on just being the best YOU you can be. Make short-term goals to make incremental improvements.
Now it's your turn. What is your image of Vegan Nirvana? How does YOUR personal Vegan Nirvana differ from the image you have seen portrayed about what vegans SHOULD be? Tell us in the comments below.