Alignment In Three Viewpoints

Last week I had the opportunity to hear Dr. Daniel Amen speak about brain health, and he made some very interesting points that are quite relevant to the Happy Calories Don’t Count model. He demonstrated how some people’s detrimental thoughts and behaviors could be directly attributed to an unhealthy brain, and then went on to describe changes we could make to improve our brain function and health.

Because our thoughts, feelings and beliefs are things we consider in the Happy Calories Don’t Count world, and because these non-physical aspects of ourselves are often relegated to the disciplines of therapy or spirituality, I was eager to learn practical, physical tools we could use to help us achieve alignment.

Dr. Amen spoke about avoiding the “bad things” and embracing the “good things.” His list of “bad things” includes drugs, alcohol, sugar and negative thoughts. His list of “good things” includes plenty of sleep, quality nutrition, and moderate exercise.

While I don’t like to label things as “good” or “bad” and I don’t believe sugar is a “bad” thing, I was ok with most of his suggestions – until he brought out that dreaded “bank book” analogy.  You know the one.  It’s when someone tries to tell you to “budget” your calories just like you would your finances.

As my blood pressure was rising right there in my chair (because I hate it when weight-loss myths are perpetuated – especially by esteemed and influential people), I had a moment of clarity. Dr. Amen was in alignment. The beauty of alignment is that it is inclusive – Dr. Amen’s way doesn’t have to be my way. Dr. Amen’s way just has to be congruent with what he thinks and feels and believes – which it obviously is.

Another example of someone who is very different from me, but who seems to be in alignment, is Jillian Michaels. I say “seems” because I don’t personally know her nor have I ever heard her speak. I only know of her through commercial sound bytes promoting The Biggest Loser. The practices she advocates are quite different than what Dr. Amen suggests, and they are radically different than what I promote. Yet, she acts (from what I can gather) in a way that is congruent with her thoughts and feelings and beliefs. We are three different people – with very different ideas and approaches – all acting in harmony with the totality of who we are, thereby creating success on our own terms.

The key to your success is for you to untangle your thoughts, feelings and beliefs so that your actions can also be congruent with the totality of who you are.

Alignment truly is the answer for everyone. It’s just that alignment will look different for each individual person because we all have our unique histories, experiences and points of view.  So next time you’re wondering if you’re in alignment or not simply ask yourself, “am I acting in a way that’s congruent with my true thoughts and feelings and beliefs? Am I happy?”