What does your Utopia look like? Have you ever stopped to think about it? How does health fit in to your utopia?
I bet in your ideal world, you feel light, fit, and move freely with no aches or pains. You have a positive frame of mind, you're happy and energetic.
When you see yourself in this utopia, what does the rest of your life look like? What kind of exercise do you do? What kind of work do you do and what does your commute look like? What kind of food you eat and where is the food come from? What do your relationships look like with those you love?
Hopefully it feels good to allow yourself this moment of exploration and daydreaming. Hopefully this simple exercise can inspire you to change certain aspects in your life to help bring your utopia closer to reality.
Take a minute to come explore my utopia where health is first and foremost.
In my utopia, we all live close enough to a farmer’s market or a hydroponic garden to get fresh fruits and vegetables year around. We walk or ride our bikes to the market and the fresh veggies and fruits make up over 50% of our meals.
In my utopia packaged and processed foods and sweets don’t exist. Processed white flour does not exist. Concentrated fruit juice doesn’t exist. Sodas, energy drinks, and sports drinks won’t exist.
We will hydrate our bodies naturally with water, tea or freshly ground coffee beans. We won’t have refined and processed sugar to pour into our drinks.
The sweetest foods and most concentrated sugars are berries, oranges and apples.
And we love it.
You Can’t Crave What Doesn’t Exist
Some may stop and think, what about my sweet cravings? Well, if it doesn’t exist, you can’t crave it. It won’t even be an option so you’ll quickly learn not to even think about it. The longer you go without it, eventually your body will stop craving it.
It’s amazing how quickly our taste buds can get used to less sugar, less sweet in our food and drinks.
Think about how people would eat differently, and as a result how the spectrum of disease in this country would change.
Think about how the generations of kids growing up in this culture will see food and health differently.
Looks pretty good, doesn’t it?
Don’t Stop With Food
I’m not about to end my utopia there. Let’s keep going.
In my utopia, we all live within biking distance to our place of work. We live in communities with close social interactions and connections.
We move our bodies regularly during the day. Even if we sit behind a computer for work (after all I want my utopia to be somewhat realistic), it is EXPECTED of us to get up and walk every 30 minutes. We aren’t looked at strangely for constantly getting up and moving, and we don’t need to apologize for taking “movement breaks.”
Our work culture is such that we all glare at the one or two workers who continually grind away without getting up. We remind them, “Hey, it’s been 45 minutes already. Get up and start moving.”
In my utopia, when we walk into a building, the first thing we see is the stairwell. If we want to take the elevator, we need walk around to find it.
In my utopia, parking lots are empty. At least empty of cars. The bike racks are full.
In my utopia, it is perfectly acceptable to place a sign on your office door, “Please do not disturb. Meditating for ten minues. Namaste”
Fantasy or Reality?
Is this all fantasy? Could you see any of this being based in a reality we may one day achieve?
One by one, my goal is to convince people that we shouldn’t just dream of a life like this. We should take action and recreate our lives like this. One by one, we can affect the change we want.
This is my utopia for health. Health is my priority, for myself, my family and us all.
A utopia with different goals would look much different. What would one look like for working your way up the corporate ladder? For making as much money as possible so you can vacation first class in the Bahamas?
Those would obviously look much different.
Unfortunately, I have seen too many people create their perfect world at the expense of their health. The result? They may achieve their perceived goal, but when they end up too sick or too stressed to enjoy it, they realize their goal was misguided from the beginning.
My utopia reflects my priorities: Health and happiness. What are your priorities?
Visualize your utopia. Take ten minutes, sit in a quiet place where you will not be interrupted. Close your eyes and visualize your perfect work. Connect as many sense as you can, sight, sound, feel. Connect as many aspects of your life that you can, your nutrition, your exercise, your work environment, your friends and family, and as many as you can imagine. Shoot for the moon and come up with as many examples as you can. Let the feeling sink in and enjoy. Then open your eyes and pick one item to implement today to get you closer to that life.
Thanks for reading.
Bret Scher, MD FACC
Cardiologist, author, founder of Boundless Health