Why I Write: Self-Expression + Changing the Food Conversation
The lovely Helen at Food & Nonsense (who by the way lives in my dream vacation - Bali) tagged me to share Why I Write. I've seen this pop up on other blogger's sites, and I'm so curious to see other's thoughts about writing. Writing is such a personal things, and it takes huge courage to share anything that you create. Here's a little behind the scenes into my writing here on my blog.
A little about me...
I wrote this question last because it's really hard to describe me in a short paragraph, and I didn't want to edit myself too much (you can check out my About page for more details). I started blogging in December 2012 because I wanted to share my love for nutrition with everyone (read: my friends + family had heard enough). I blogged about random topics from kale to ditching diets to misconceptions around fats, and it wasn't until this spring did I realize that I really really loved writing about healing our relationship with food and body image.
I work at an integrative mental health care center, mainly with clients with eating disorders, and I also coach women virtually here to help them find peace with food. I'm also fascinated by the mind and body and using a whole range of healing modalities to bring about true healing in clients.
What am I working on?
So many things! Since starting to really clarify what I wanted to write about on this blog, I've realized the possibilities in this online space. I've rekindled my creative side, which was super strong as a child, and I have to keep a list of projects that sound amazing. Right now, I'm keeping things simple but interesting with my local and virtual coaching practice, blogging here, and in the midst of writing a second ebook all about intuitive eating + body confidence tips and tools (more on this soon!).
I'm working on me. Writing has always helped me express myself and clarify the endless thoughts within. As an introvert, I recharge my energy by being by myself, and writing is a way to help me show up as my best self. I'm always working on infusing self-care into my life and living an open-hearted, vibrant, and connected life.
Why do I write what I do?
While I am passionate about nutrition and using food as medicine, writing about it doesn't excite a fire within me. I write about our relationship with food, self-care, intuitive eating, body image, and accepting and loving ourselves because it's sustainable and necessary in this diet-obsessed culture we live in. Seeing so many women whose life's purpose is weight loss makes me so sad - not to mention the statistics of young girls in middle school with major fears of "obesity" (since we have an obesity war these days). With weight stigma being a very real thing in our society - without the research to back-up weight-loss plans or diets - the conversation around food and bodies needs to change.
Not only do we need to understand that diets don't work, but we need to bring compassion, self-love, and self-care into the health industry. Using mind-body-soul tools - as woo-woo as they may seem - will bring about healing in individuals rather than blaming people for being fat or eating "bad" foods. I write because if I help just one person, I'll be happy.
Why does my writing differ from others in my genre?
It's not about weight loss...hah. I joke, but seriously, sometimes I read a really great post about nutrition or health. At the end, the whole point relates to weight loss rather than eating for nourishment. I know weight loss sells, and I'm sure I'd have a lot more readers or clients if I wrote about 'how to lose weight' or sold weight loss coaching packages. Yet, my soul dies a bit just thinking about that. While many of my clients do lose weight, it's from letting their body settle at a healthy weight from them. Jumping on the scale or body shaming is never a part of the package.
My writing differs because it's me. When I first started blogging, I wrote from a very impersonal perspective and talked about the benefits of these super-foods and those nutrition myths. Although, I love learning about food and medicine, writing about it was very scientific and blah. Now, my writing is an expression of myself, and that is exciting.
How does my writing process work?
Spontaneous. My best posts come to me, and I just have to go with it. Lately, I've been putting a timer on for 30 minutes in the morning before checking email or social media and just writing. Somedays, it's a blogpost while others it's in my journal. There's usually not much structure to my writing, and I just get my thoughts out of my head. Later, I'll go back and edit and add a picture. If it's in my journal, I'm just free-writing, going with the flow, and making very messy non-complete sentences. Journaling is a way for me to be present, connect with what's going on inside of me, and just listen.
Blogpost ideas usually pop up randomly during the day, so I'll jot them down in a little notebook or on my phone to return to. Otherwise, I'll forget them. I have to say some of my most creative times are while on a walk or run or in the shower.
If you're interested in sharing your writing process, I tag YOU.