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How to Begin Your Clean Body Project

"If you want to conquer the anxiety of life, live in the moment, 
live in the breath.” 
~Amit Ray


Have you ever had that feeling where you think you’ve been asleep too long and need to wake up?

Sometimes our lives become so mundane and regular that we start to operate on autopilot. I know that was true for me.

My last episode of “being asleep at the wheel” lasted for almost a decade. I went to my job, did my work, went home, ate, slept and woke up the next day to do it again. I had ideas of a different life but they flitted away as quickly as they appeared.

During the summer of 2012 I woke up one day – literally – and decided I wanted a change. That’s why I dreamt up the Clean Body Project. I don’t recall what precipitated this decision, however, I had recently finished my classes at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition.

While I felt I was waking up, I wasn’t fully awake. There was still a sense of disconnect. You know, that experience of something missing? It wasn’t until 2017 that my body shifted and I was wide – WIDE – awake.

A sudden onset of anxiety triggered a wakefulness that is difficult to navigate. Over the last few months I have managed to begin figuring it out. Part of this process of being fully awake is mindfulness.

This too was relatively new to me. I will admit, I had never actively practiced mindfulness. I knew what it was in a general sense but not how it was applied in everyday life.

Anxiety creates a desire – or rather a need – to become mindful. Rather than focusing on my fears, all part of the future, I actively focus my attention on the present. Sometimes this is easier said than done, but a necessity when facing daily, debilitating panic attacks.

I was recently asked by a subscriber – “What is the first step to starting my own Clean Body Project?” My answer – become more mindful. This is true of anything we start in life. Bringing mindfulness to the table increases the likelihood of success, and brings a sense of purpose to what you’re doing. When you can drop into the moment and pay attention to the “now,” the present, you awake to a bounty of information that will guide you to the next step – whatever that is for you.

You see, each of us will have a different project. Right now the phase I am in for my project is focusing on spirituality. Your’s might start in the relationship realm. Or maybe you want to fix something that is broken in your career or finances. We all start somewhere to begin the journey. The direction it might take is unknown, but that’s the beauty of the project. We clean up as we go with no preconceived notion about where we will end up.

Remember, the first step is mindfulness. Here are a few tricks that may help you be more mindful:

  • While in the shower or bathtub, pay attention to how your body feels in the water. How does the soap foam feel against your skin? How does the steam swirl off of the water? What do you smell? How does it make you feel? I intentionally use a variety of essential oils depending on my mood. Lavender if I am feeling anxious, Sweet orange or clementine if I want to feel joyful, and frankincense if I want a meditative tone.
  • When eating a meal, pay attention to every detail. In fact, start off with creating an appetizing ambiance. Light some candles, set a pretty place setting, and add flowers or another centerpiece to the table. Even music can help bring mindfulness to the meal. After every bite place your utensils down – out of your hands. Breathe. I was shocked when I realized that I stopped breathing when I ate, I was doing it so fast. As you savor the food pay attention to the texture, the feel in your mouth, the aromas, the heat level. How does the food make you feel? If you are eating with others, how are they experiencing the meal? Be present and enjoy.
  • Go for a walk in a beautiful setting. Maybe a local park or down by the water. As you do so, breathe deeply. Feel the air filling your lungs. Does it smell a particular way? As you release the breathe, do you feel the exhale wisp of air on your nostrils? What do you see on your walk? What do you hear? What do you feel? When you see something, really see it. Looks for colors and textures and take a moment or two to let it sink in deep. Keep breathing and paying attention.

Creating a mindful practice is the foundation of the Clean Body Project. As the project progresses I will continue to share what I learn and how to apply it. For now, start with today. Find ways to be more mindful and present in everything you do. 

About the Author Corrie Ann

Corrie Ann Gray is a writer, researcher, coach, and cookie enthusiast who lives in Los Angeles, CA. She started the Clean Body Project to share all of her knowledge and resources with others who are interested in running their own experiment into clean holistic living. She is the CEO and founder of Gray Ink Media.

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