I’m coming to learn what a difficult question this is for me, and I think for many people. So many of us look outside of ourselves for nourishment, comfort, joy and even love in our society today. We need only look at the huge amount of debt many carry, the big bellies or full closets around us to know how it’s become the accepted and normal way to relive stress, manage emotional pain and avoid anything and everything in our lives. We buy cars, houses, nail polish, shoes, books and electronics. We eat energy bars, McDonalds, pies, cakes, cookies and potato chips. We surf the internet for hours on end and make sure our statuses are all up to date. We zone out in front of the television for more hours than many of us can count; and these would be the acceptable forms of diversion. We can’t forget alcohol, drugs, smoking, gambling or porn which also have become many people’s forms of avoidance.
So what are we all avoiding so desperately and what can we do about it? Two tough questions for sure. I have a simple answer. Nourishment. While it may be a simple answer to difficult questions I know it’s not easy to answer the questions for ourselves. I don’t think many of us have given any thought to what nourishes us in healthy ways. We haven’t been taught to think about what we need. For most of us we’re taught from a very young age that our value comes in what we can give to others. We’re often taught that it’s selfish to look after ourselves. I have to say what a crock of crap that really is. How can we look after anyone else if we can’t look after ourselves? And how can we look after ourselves if we don’t know what we need in any given situation. If we knew how to look after ourselves by giving nourishment when we needed it we would all be very different people. Imagine how slim everyone would be. Imagine how few people would still smoke or gamble. Imagine how many fewer pairs of shoes would be in our closets.
I’ve recently discovered how much I enjoy wandering through the field when I’m having a crappy day. One day a few weeks ago I had a day from hell, and rather than eat ice cream or buy a book I wandered the field for hours taking pictures with my macro lens. What a pleasure! Nourishment can take so many forms. Reading a book, lounging in the bathtub, playing with the dogs, going for walk, praying, meditating, talking to my Honey and laughing are all favourites of mine. There are as many different ways to find nourishment as there are people who need it. What do you do to nourish yourself?