Being a child of the 60s, the word “trippy” was an unfortunate part of my lexicon. So much so that my guide in Ecuador once asked, “What does trippy mean?” His English was impeccable, so he was embarrassed.
Apparently, I had exclaimed the word far too often and could only tell him something about the Grateful Dead.
Today, I don’t use the word casually. Trippy times define the bewildering number of calamities bedeviling us all at once. You’ve got to admit freaky things (there I go again) are happening that we could not have imagined even ten years ago.
It’s 108 Fahrenheit here, and the forest is dry. New fires erupt all around the state. Friends are still sick with “God-Knows-What” fungus, virus, or addle-brained symptoms of plague and tribulation.
These are times of political bamboozlement, horrors of war, and violence, domesticated and globally cultivated. Poverty and famine, with nearly 9 billion to feed during heat and floods and loss of crops.
You have two choices: become thunderstruck or tap into your innate health and happiness.
Take care of your body, that vessel that holds your human potential.
First, you have got to make sure that you are eating well.
It’s simple—eat whole, unprocessed organic foods. A diet rich in organic veggies, grains, meats, and beans will supply all the minerals, proteins, good old-fashioned carbohydrates, and fats to feed your brain. It will give you everything you need to make your heart throb and body thrive.
Skip the chemicals and agricultural pesticides in non-organic processed foods by always choosing only certified organic.
Eating local energizes your community and your diet while reducing your environmental footprint.
Buy what’s in season and grown in your area, and remember, small family farmers can be organic and not USDA certified. Your neighbors who grow or process organic food and make less than $5,000 may not be certified but follow USDA organic regulations.
Support them—your food will be fresher, tastier, and nutrient-rich. You’ll become an integral part of your local community while getting to know your neighbors.
You’re already achieving a taste of health and a path to happiness in one simple act.
Eat for health but don’t forget to eat for the pure pleasure of it.
Reveling in the tastes and smells of some exotic or naughty treat is good for you—in a while. Go out on a limb and splurge.
This might mean trying new things like Mississippi pot roast, or sticking to what you know – it’s up to you. On occasion, I eat ice cream smothered in maple syrup—naughty!
Once you’ve adored that roast and ice cream, it’s time to move your body
Have you ever thought about the amount of exercise that you complete? I’m reading the book The Body by Bill Bryson; he observes that most people in developed countries hardly walk more than a mile a day.
They sit and commute just to plop down in a cubicle, then again on a train or auto back home to assume the couch-potato position.
This is not good for the human body, which is barely over the fight-or-flight instincts of our evolution.
We must move, flex and stretch to increase the energy flows that keep us free from illness.
Cholesterol, heart health, diabetes, and obesity are signs you aren’t dancing, walking, or swimming enough. Go frolic in nature, run up those steps, fly a kite, chase a kitten, just move.
Your bones and muscles will stay strong, and you’ll sleep and dream deeper and carry only the weight you need. Endorphins and all the good chemicals will flood your brain with positive vibes (there I go again) if you shake your body and just move.
Finally, for both your happiness and health, you have got to be social as much as you can.
Like many of us, I’ve been through a fair amount of trauma and loss this year, and it continues to be a trippy ride. I won’t go into details about my ongoing angst living next to a tinder downed forest or my corgi, who’s gone a bit daft.
But my inner resilience, that nugget of joy and strength, is still there. It may get buried, but my circle of friends helps remind me how to access it.
Being vulnerable with them has helped us become closer and, in turn, opened us up to a greater understanding of ourselves and each other.
The people in your life can be a resource of profound growth if you let them.
Hold people in that light, for better or worse, because that resource is important. Change happens, and we must understand each other to navigate the changes tripping towards us today.
Times may be going to hell in a handbasket, but I believe cultivating health and inner peace during these times is part of the work we’re here to do.
Eat well, laugh often, believe in yourself and others. Keep moving I’m right here with you.