Sometimes, do you feel defeated trying to be healthy in a very unhealthy world? I know confusion sets in when I find out something I’ve been doing, eating or buying is actually awful for my body and family. It’s often after this confusion that I think I should just throw in the towel and go back to an “ignorance is bliss” mentality. It’s what I’ve been thinking about lately, and so I thought I’d use this space to give you some encouragement for a healthy home and a healthy space. In essence to tell you that you’re doing a good job and you are moving forward beyond those who have chosen the easier path.
Just like any change we try to make, it can be really difficult. Change is hard and it takes a lot of willpower, brain power and determination to make a permanent change. And because of these three things, it can feel like you’re stuck in place sometimes instead of moving forward.
It’s because the task of creating a healthy home is multi-faceted and you’re never REALLY done that this journey can feel long and draining. But that’s what this bit of encouragement is for, really. To tell you that you can keep creating a healthy home, no matter how long you are stuck on one task – because each small step gets you closer.
A healthy home isn’t an end destination. Instead it’s really a mindset shift and a celebration of positive changes made. I’ve read a few things floating around that might instill a fear that you need to change immediately. I say, yes! Change the things you can as soon as you can, but to worry and stress about it tracks you backward. Anything that makes you feel worried you can use to move forward. But only if you focus on the positive change that can come from it.
The encouragement here is that you can be informed and educated on home toxins without it ever leading to worry. A healthy home is possible, even if there are toxins present. No healthy home will ever be perfect – you change as much as you can and then look for more positive changes to work towards.
YOU’RE DOING GREAT: THE ENCOURAGEMENT YOU NEED FOR A HEALTHY HOME
The truth is, if you’re here, you’re doing great. Whether you’ve just learned you need to change your home environment, or you’ve been on this journey for a while – you’re on the right path. For many of us, I think we’re working through changing habits and ways of thinking we adopted either as young people or as kids in our own homes. Creating a healthy home looks very different now than it did even 5 years ago.
The fact that you’re keeping up on this topic and you’re willing to change years of programming and habits, speaks volumes. It means you’re aware that you need to make changes. And this is one of the first steps, I think, to creating a healthy home. It’s kind of thelike the age old statement, “acceptance is the first step”. Acknowledging that there are places you can improve your healthy home environment leaves you with the opportunity to do just that – improve your space.
If you’re working to break a family habit or family cycle of an unhealthy environment – give yourself a pat on the back. It’s a sign that you’ve not only started educating yourself on home toxins, but you’ve also recognized that you can do better.
SETBACKS CAN HAPPEN
One thing to remember is that setbacks CAN happen. A setback can come in a variety of ways. I think the most common way is discovering a NEW way in which we are currently aren’t making the healthiest choices for our home space. This realization can often send us spiraling backwards. We thought we were making such great headway and we thought we had made such positive changes. Only to find out there are MORE changes that we need to master.
This frustration can lead to a halt in progressive thinking and positive changes. But I think the good news is that it’s often just temporary. Most of the time it just takes a short amount of time for us to turn around and get back to reducing toxins and making changes
The second way I see setbacks is when we regress back to an old way of thinking or an old style of living. Kind of like falling off the bandwagon. It happens. WE all slide backwards. Some of us do it in particular seasons of life due to business. If this is the case for you, it might be time to reevaluate your habits and make sure they’re truly sustainable – even in the busy seasons.
This is why I love the layered approach to creating healthy house. Each small change you make should be a sustainable part of your routines and habits. Once it’s solidified in your routine (meaning its second nature and you don’t necessarily even think about it anymore), you can add another small change. The next change should follow the same rule. And then don’t even think about adding another habit change or lifestyle change until it’s second nature.
As you keep going, you may have a habit that is tougher to break than other habits, and maybe that’s when you see a backslide. The important thing is to keep going and if you can’t move forward, try to just maintain the lifestyle and spot you’re currently in.
EDUCATION IS KEY - EVEN IF IT’S CONFUSING SOMETIMES
One of the biggest ways we can help ourselves is to really understand and know toxins inside and out. The more you know, the better equipped you are to make a change or decision on the fly. Sometimes we don’t have time to do research and sometimes we don’t have the ability to over analyze what’s going on. Instead we have to just act.
In understanding the health concerns and negative effects of various toxins, you can be encouraged to make a positive choice and steer clear from a particular toxin. It gives you confidence in making decisions about products and habits without having to stop and over analyze the situation.
I’m the first to admit to you that sometimes trying to stay really informed on toxins and home habits can be confusing. And I’ll share with you why. So many times we talk about homes as if they’re a “one size fits all”. Just like our bodies, our homes are incredibly unique based on the mechanics, the exterior climate, the foundation, and materials inside. This means that a recommendation for one house may just not be ideal for another healthy home.
It can mean that you see a lot of conflicting advice about recommendations for your home. What I think is so unique is that you can pick and choose different ideas and methods and customize the plan that works for your home.
That’s why I created a unique starting page that will give you topics based on what you’re looking to learn.
HOW TO STICK WITH IT
With all the encouragement, it can make the job of creating a healthy home easier and feel less burdensome. There really isn’t an “end goal” with a healthy home. It’s kind of like a healthy body. You don’t attain it. Instead, you get to live it every day. The same is true of creating healthy habits and spaces at home.
Once you change your mindset to this idea that this is your new way of living, it all becomes easier. I think when we look at a healthy home in terms of a final destination, it can feed feelings of frustration because you’re not reaching your goal fast enough.
That being said, there are some instances where creating a plan with some items to check off is beneficial. Creating goals and a plan for very specific projects in your home can help you stay on track. Things like replacing flooring, or installing a better thermostat. THESE are items that are tangible and have an “accomplished date”. But for other things like “making healthier home purchases” or “ventilating your house more”, those are lifestyle changes you can stick with instead.
Another way to really stick with this idea of changing your lifestyle to benefit your home’s health is to surround yourself with positive influences. I love following those that inspire me on social media, and particularly, Instagram. Not only do I get SO much information, but sometimes, when I’m least expecting it, I scroll through my feed and THERE I see just the idea or encouragement I needed in regards to healthy habits.
You could also subscribe to top podcasts or a newsletter that sends information and tips about creating a healthy space. It helps because these often come right to your inbox and remind you of your healthy choices, even when you aren’t thinking about them.
And if you’re having trouble moving forward with your healthy home journey because you’re stuck or confused about a particular area; ask for help. I create plans all the time for families who are simply stuck at a spot and don’t know where to move forward to next. With my resources in your back pocket, you can get an idea of what the next step is and how to get there.
As I use this space for teaching and education, I also want to use it as a place of encouragement. I’m so thankful you’re here and ready to help make your home and also the world a less toxic place.