Wednesday, October 2, 2013

The Body Spirit Connection

"I will feed you things that nourish your creativity.  I will feed you really healthy things, but they'll be delicious, so I hope you won't mind too much." I'm at a writer's workshop at Whidbey Island, and that's what the chef said to us as we started the week.

She's done just that-- beautiful displays of food that is mostly locally grown, and whole.  Nothing is processed. A lot of things I've never heard of, but have been surprised at how wonderful they taste. Things I would've never eaten on my own.

I've been thinking a lot about what she said about foods that nourish creativity.  I'm not sure what that means exactly. I've read in other places that too much sugar can dull creativity, because it increases dopamine levels, which in turn acts as a numbing agent.  It's that "food coma" effect we all sort of know. Here's an article if you're interested:  Julia Cameron, who wrote The Artist's Way and The Write Diet, suggests that food can become a distraction to our creativity. She says, "Food is a seditive. We use it to block our feelings of discomfort. We use it to block our feelings, period. Rather than buckle down and accomplish the difficult piece of work that looms just ahead, we scoop up a snack and tell ourselves it can wait until tomorrow." 

I'm not sure how much of this is food related, but I do feel clearer and more articulate. I wake up with words, and a powerful need to write-- which though I love words, is not something I've felt in a long time. I have dreams that speak powerfully. Perhaps it is as much the environment.  Perhaps its the quiet or time set aside to just write, but I wonder if a little bit of it has to do with the food. I wonder if maybe not the specific food I've been eating, but the way I've been eating, is functioning as a seditive or creative blocker.

I've been thinking about going Paleo anyway-- trying to get over this blasted hump of a plateau.  But now I'm thinking more about it, maybe in a different way. These last few days, my skin somehow looks better (or maybe the lighting here is bad?) and I feel better. I feel more aware of my body, and less sluggish.  I guess this is silly, but I feel somehow more whole and connected?  If I do, in fact, want to write, I need to adopt a lifestyle that will help me do that, but not at the expense of my other fitness and life goals.  I'm going to talk to He-who-trains when I get back and see what he thinks.  Will I still be able to lift and run if I adopt this lifestyle? Will I have enough energy and be able to take in enough protein? Even if Paleo isn't right for me, maybe I can find a way to incorporate more whole foods into my life. 

How much does intake foodwise affect outgo productivity wise? I'm curious to see what comes out of this experiment.