You may be wondering how believing in something ended up on a list of 25 rules for better health.We have already determined that there is a direct correlation between our physical health, and our mental and emotional health. All health programs involve proper nutrition and exercise. I want you to realize that its easier to lose and keep off weight if you are happy and at peace with yourself and those around you. An important part of our emotional and mental well being is what I call our"Belief System". Our belief systems are the values and beliefs we live by every day of our lives. They are what make us who we are. You could call them a set of rules we follow.
Let me make this clear. When I say to believe in something it doesn't necessarily have to be a religion, or a particular God. It could also involve spiritualism. I found an article written by Cynthia Perkins, M. Ed. in which she gives a definition of spirituality, and I quote. "Spirituality is finding meaning and purpose in your life. It is discovering who you truly are, and connecting with sources that provide you with inner strength, comfort, hope and inner peace". I was raised a Catholic and I have my beliefs. I have faith and try to follow the commandments. I have a friend who believes in Wicca. She has a deep and personal belief in the power of nature. Her beliefs differ from mine, but that doesn't make them any less meaningful. There are many people who don't follow organized religion, but do believe in a power greater than themselves. They are good decent people who who live happy productive lives. The key is to believe in something.
Research has shown the positive effects of believing, on not only our mental and emotional health, but our physical health as well. Many studies have shown that comfort and strength gained from religion, meditation and prayer can contribute to healing and a sense of well being. They can also help with stress in our lives.
From my own experience I can tell you that a lot of my over-eating was not always due to my love for food. ( well some of it was). Sometimes I ate because I was bored, lonely, or deperessed. I often ate even when I wasn't hungry. I ate because I didn't care anymore. I didn't care about myself or those around me. More importantly, I don't think I believed in too much including myself. Believing in something is so important for our health. As we move through the 25 rules you'll see things such as volunteering. Health isn't just about weight loss and looking good. I want to lose weight and look good, but I want more.
Next up on rules will be #6. Small Steps.
Here's a little thing I wrote for one of my other blogs. Its about what I think is man's (and woman's) greatest strength. I hope you enjoy.
What is Man's Greatest Strength?
Many experts in the scientific community will say that man's greatest strength is his intelligence and ability to reason. They often argue that our ability to think, allows us to control and manipulate the world around us. Many in religious life will counter that our ability to experience love is by far our greatest strength, because it separates us from all of God's other creatures.
I believe that man's greatest strengths involve his ability to believe in things. To reach past what we can see, and believe in that which is invisible to the naked eye. We can all relate to faith and our belief in God, but believing may mean different things to different people. Our ability to believe includes not only belief in a power greater than ourselves, but also belief in our own abilities, a belief that we can love those around us, a belief in the power of nature, and most importantly, a belief that everyone in the world is interconnected to each other with common goals, and a common purpose.
What gives us our strength is a belief that our lives are not guided by random chance, like the spinning of a giant roulette wheel. Rather, they are guided, by the belief that through our actions we control our own destiny, and have the ability to affect those around us. I recently had a philosophical discussion with a friend, who also happens to be an Atheist. I posed to him this simple question. "Do you believe that when we die, there is a continuance of our existence"? His answer, which didn't surprise me; and I quote. "What people call the after-life or heaven is just a myth. Since our time on this earth is all there is, we should spend it trying to be happy, rather than wasting it on foolish thoughts of anything more". As I thought about what he had said, I felt very sad for him, but happy that I had my own beliefs, and more importantly my faith. Through the years I've lost loved ones, and even now I miss them. What gives me strength and comfort is my belief that I will see them again some day.
Throughout history man has moved forward and endured because of his beliefs, and yes his faith. If you believe in nothing, and have faith in nothing, then you will not fight for anything. Our ability to believe is our greatest strength.