The 5 things I’ve learned by challenging myself with a 3-day cleanse.
Have you ever looked at a mountain so steep you thought it was too difficult to hike? Have you ever stopped in the middle of writing thinking you would never get published? Have you ever been so tired of a situation you wonder what the point is?
I have, many times.
When I look at my journey, I have my moments of doubts. A lot of them. I sometimes feel ridiculous or wonder why I even bother. I love writing beyond anything. It’s therapeutic at so many levels, but sharing with the world is making me step out of my comfort zone. Whether it’s about you or not, writing is always personal. You’re afraid of what people might think, and maybe you’re just making a fool of yourself.
There is always this moment when your stomach knots, and you doubt yourself enough to give up on your dreams. That very moment is what I’ve been working on.
So what will it take to make the difference between making an attempt or going the distance?
For me, it’s hard work, but also the ability to look at your fear in the eyes and make it walk away. But, that’s not something that is easy to do. Experience and knowledge help you build that confidence.
So, a few days ago, I decided to take on a new challenge to help get there. Another one, I should say! As if having a full-time job, a family, a book to write, and a blog wasn’t enough… 😉
I could have picked anything, but I wanted to do something I had never done before.
So here it is.
I LOVE eating, so the idea alone of not eating solid food for 3 days terrifies me. So, this is exactly what I decided to do. I won’t lie. I highly doubted I could be a happy camper during these 3 days, but I also knew I needed to do this, for me.
My husband had done something similar a few months back, and I decided to do it too. He and I signed up for the 3-day Blueprint cleanse.
What is a Blueprint cleanse?
The cleanse consists of drinking 6 juices in a specific order throughout the day. You purchase them online, and the company ships them to you overnight. There are a few rules to know. You need to prepare your body a few days before to avoid a brutal change by eating mainly veggies and fruits. During the 3-day cleanse, you can only drink water, herbal tea, or green tea. There are a few cheats offered, but let’s not go there. It’s a challenge, right? No gain, no pain.
Why am I really doing this?
There were a lot of reasons why I wanted to do this. This choice is VERY unlike me. I LOVE food, and I mean it. I’m the kind of person who thinks “Who the heck in his right mind would want to do this?” And, this is exactly why I did this. I wanted to push myself and see how much willpower I had.
I grew up always thinking I was weak, that I couldn’t do as much as the others. I spent more time indoor than outdoor, and I get tired easily. Also, I’ve never been consistent with any sports, so I’m trying to make a positive change in my life. My goal is to break the cycle, and I convinced myself I was stronger than I thought.
I used to think I would never be able to write a book. My perspective has changed, and I want to prove myself that we can do anything if we put our mind into it. That’s why I decided to challenge myself by doing something I didn’t think I could do.
Also, I’ve been sick almost all January, but that may be because I work from home. I’m less exposed to germs. So, when I encounter one, I can hear it say “Hey there, how is it going?” I know it’s for me.
Anyway, I decided it was time for me to get healthier and give a boost to my metabolism. I felt it in my bones it was the right thing to do.
So here I was contemplating my so-called food for the next 3 days with this voice shouting in my head: YOU CAN DO IT!!!
What did I learn?
#1 – Food is everywhere
Seriously, you have to stop eating to realize how surrounded we are by food. Everywhere I went, I could either see or smell food. Take your phone or your computer, and look at how many pictures of food your friends have posted. All the commercials are about food. This is ridiculous!
I have a kid I needed to feed, so not only I had to either get food or make dinner for him, but I also had to sit next to him while he was eating. Real question for you: Do you know how slow a three-year-old kid eats???? It’s like watching a snail and a turtle complete a lap and do a backflip on its way back, or better, talking to the sloth in Zootopia. Yes, that slow!
It was excruciating even though the juices were filling, so I wasn’t that hungry, but still.
#2 – I don’t like green juices, but who does?
My husband, I guess. For him, this cleanse was a piece of cake. I love smoothies, in general. They’re good for you, but I always prefer the juices made of fruit. I‘ve never really loved green juices, so try to drink 3 of them a day for 3 days, and you’re not that hungry anymore.
On day 3, I was in the kitchen with the bottle on the counter in front of me. I stared at that bottle for a while before making myself drink it. A lot went through my mind, but ultimately, my stomach roared, so I had no choice.
At some point, I even had a happy moment when I thought I had drunk the whole thing, but then, realized it was my husband’s bottle, and I still had a quarter to go… Have you heard of the emotional elevator? Yep – right there!
#3 – Our main barrier is ourselves
Well, we always have a choice, but that’s what I wanted to test – My willpower. So, I did it. I completed the three days without cheating, and I’m very proud of myself. I definitely challenged myself and questioned my sanity a few times, but I DID IT.
And, that was the purpose of this challenge – I wanted to get as many times as possible to this moment when I usually back out. We are our own barriers – Break them!
#4 – Your mind is playing you. Be the boss of you!
There are so many things we can do, but think we can’t because our background, our fears and/or society made us believe that we can’t. Well, we can, and it’s a work-in-progress.
The main thing this juice taught me is that I’ve had many moments where when I thought about food, I couldn’t spend 10 minutes without being hungry.
But, really I wasn’t, it was just the habit of eating. I read a book, watched a movie or had a pleasant conversation with a friend, and an hour goes by. I did not think of food or remember I was hungry.
What did that say about me or my mind?
Take command of your life and tell your brain to shut up while you chase your dreams. You are the boss of you!
#5 – Push yourself – learn to be ok with being uncomfortable
You have a fear of heights, go climbing. You have a fear of being criticized, don’t mind the people. Do what you love even if it’s not easy. I’m still pushing my barriers, and I hate the feeling of being uncomfortable. I’ve grown from that experience. Challenging myself is something I will continue to do, so I don’t fail myself by not pushing when necessary.
If I were not willing to do this, I would be a hypocrite to keep saying “push yourself.” I’m trying to embrace it until feeling out of my wheelhouse feels actually ok. I don’t know if I’ll succeed, but I will certainly try.
Writing a book is difficult because not only you have to write a great story, but you need to be committed. It takes a long time and a lot of efforts. There are so many barriers, so I keep pushing all the time.
I’m testing my limits and pushing myself to see how far I can go or how soon my brain will start acting up. Lots of great things happen when our mindset is wired to work for it and win. I want to be able to look at anything, without fear going in the way. I can do it; you can do it.
So, what will be your challenge?