HOW TO BE LESS THAN PERFECT

Na­dia, Dr Libby Weaver and psy­chol­o­gist Neil Mick­le­wood share their thoughts on em­brac­ing im­per­fec­tion and let­ting go of ex­treme health and hap­pi­ness ex­pec­ta­tions

Nadia - - PROMOTION -

No one can re­ally ‘do it all’, feel happy ev­ery day or be 100 per­cent healthy. Un­for­tu­nately an abun­dance of self-help books, health ar­ti­cles and green gu­rus on In­sta­gram can lead us to be­lieve that per­pet­ual well­ness and hap­pi­ness is achiev­able.

The re­al­ity is far more com­pli­cated. A bal­anced life in­cludes happy and sad times, pe­ri­ods of well­ness in­ter­spersed with ill­ness, and days when you just can’t be both­ered. Un­re­al­is­tic ex­pec­ta­tions around health and hap­pi­ness can lead to feel­ings of in­fe­ri­or­ity, de­pres­sion and, in ex­treme cases, or­thorexia, a dis­or­dered form of eat­ing cen­tred around an ob­ses­sion with healthy foods.

In their book The Well­ness Syn­drome, Carl Ced­er­ström and An­dré Spicer, pro­fes­sors from Stock­holm Univer­sity and Lon­don’s City Univer­sity, say well­ness has be­come a moral de­mand in to­day’s world and is mak­ing peo­ple feel guilty and anx­ious.

“When well­ness goes from be­ing a gen­eral idea of feel­ing good to some­thing that we ought to do in order to live truth­fully and righ­teously, it takes on a new mean­ing. It be­comes an im­pos­si­ble de­mand that re­con­fig­ures the way we live our lives. Ob­ses­sively track­ing our well­ness, while con­tin­u­ously find­ing new av­enues of self-en­hance­ment, leaves lit­tle room to live.”

To help in your pur­suit of im­per­fec­tion, we asked Na­dia and a cou­ple of NA­DIA friends how to take a bal­anced ap­proach to life.

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