Posted by: Jenny Everett King
There is a commercial for a popular children’s product that ends with the line, “Motherhood means always giving one hundred percent.”
If that’s the case, then most of us are in trouble.
If motherhood meant always giving 100%, my child would never watch TV. She would never go to bed without a story. I would never forget to give her a vitamin supplement – no, even better, she wouldn’t need a vitamin supplement because her meals would be perfectly balanced to include the appropriate RDA of each and every vitamin, mineral, and herb for optimum two-year-old health. And it all would be totally organic, of course.
Well, in a perfect world, maybe.
Many of us take the sentiment of that commercial – that doing something at all means doing it perfectly – and apply it to other aspects of our lives, like diet and exercise. When it comes to our health, it’s easy to have an “all or nothing” mentality. Have you ever given up on buying some organic produce, since you can’t afford to buy all organic, all the time? Have you ever thought there’s no point in eating well for the rest of the day, just because you ate pancakes with loads of butter and maple syrup for breakfast? Or skipped exercise for the rest of the week, since you didn’t make it to the gym on Monday and Tuesday?
I have to confess that I have been guilty of all those examples at one point or another in my life.
But fortunately, health does not work that way. Wellness is not an “all or nothing” concept; in fact, it’s just the opposite: Every little bit counts. A chiropractic adjustment only once every two or three weeks is better than no chiropractic care at all. One yoga class a week is still good, even if you don’t have space to practice at home every day. Five minutes of meditation is beneficial, if your day won’t allow for a full half-hour. (Chances are, if your day is too busy to squeeze in a half-hour session, you’re really going to need those five precious minutes to yourself!)
In perfect world, I believe we should all practice yoga daily and have consistent adjustments according to our chiropractor’s recommendations. We should eat very little sugar and very many organic vegetables and whole grains. These are the sorts of recommendations patients and students often hear from us in the office, because we want to present you with an ideal. Sometimes, that ideal is daunting.
Make no mistake: You don’t have to be perfect in order to be healthy. Wellness, like motherhood, does not have to mean always giving 100%. Give your health the best that you are able to give it in this moment, and let that be enough.