Don’t Let the Hype Chase You Away
It is indicative of both a capitalistic society, and the American way, to take something pure, simple and effective, and turn it into an overhyped, watered-down version of what it once was.
What always starts out with people on the fringe, the hipsters, trend setters, and weirdo’s is so often picked up by those intrigued and inspired by their lives, their ways, and their outcomes.
It often comes during a deficit in something. A need arises, whether realized or not, and the newest trend comes swooping in picking up or knocking over everyone in its path.
This has never been so obvious as it is with the wellness industry right now. Every facet of becoming healthier, finding peace, de-stressing and so on, has been wrapped up in green leafy kale… I mean money. You can’t host a bbq without a detailed spreadsheet of what each person will eat as it seems nearly everyone has jumped on a different bandwagon on their journey to idyllic health. You can’t keep up with the cultish language of certain workout communities, and your free meditation app flashes ads for yoga mats and green tea every time you try to use it. Contradictory information is available at every turn, with claims, gurus and experts popping up and building a following from unsuspecting and well-intentioned people everywhere.
But before you completely discount the entire industry, (as this article in the New York Times, which prompted this post, did) consider that maybe just because something became popular and over-hyped doesn’t mean you need to avoid the topic completely. Right? You don’t need to reject something because it’s become popular and mass produced. Not really. In fact, just the opposite. Run head first in.
BUT WITH DISCRETION.
Let me first give my very clear disclaimer. I’m nearly 40 years old. I have 2 kids and a husband. I have lived in 5 countries. I have a masters degree. I’m not an idiot. (this message by the way, is for other non-idiots). I know how to do research, I have sources I trust. I have people I trust. I certainly do not advocate for starting the next fad diet you read about, or spending money on the first exercise program that someone claims has changed their life. USE DISCRETION – lean on sources, and people that you believe are informed, educated and authentic to help guide you.
Trudging your way through the information and resources in the wellness industry might feel like too much, but don’t discount it because it’s over-populated. Find support (such as a health coach), take one topic at a time, and cross-reference your information.
So. While Kale Chips are kind of weird, I’m going to snatch up the organic, no additives, carton of cashew milk that is available at my local supermarket, because I’ve found that eliminating dairy clears my skin, reduces mucus, and makes my digestive system SO much happier. But here’s the thing about the hype – I never had dairy alternatives or support like I do now. So YAY for the trendy! And the 10 day reset that I do every couple of months, with others in my community and online that share their ideas, struggles and goals is awesome. That didn’t really exist in a way that worked for me 10 years ago.
Obviously there are products and services that are sub-par. But there are also products and services that serve me. That work for me. Maybe not for others, but for me. There are lots of choices, I can, and have, found what works for me. I think what’s important in this industry where there are a lot of below-average options for gaining wellness is not to reject it for its popularity, but to find those you trust to help you sift through it.
An Integrative health coach is a great way to do that, by the way. As a resource, sounding board, support, and navigational partner. The growing industry of health coaching is popping up in medical offices, spa’s, workplaces and more where coaches are utilized to help guide those wanting to make lasting and meaningful changes in their behavior.
So while I hate that capitalism and big businesses have crucified some of the words and concepts behind some really awesome stuff, I’m going to utilize that to my advantage, rather than be turned away. Support the businesses and services providers that do it right. While much of the hype will fizzle eventually, especially in the area’s that didn’t have much merit, I’m going to put my attention, consumer $ and trust in those that help support MY health and wellness. Why don’t you try the same?
Loving your blogs, Kirsten. Would you ever think about doing an instructional Yoga video for real beginners like me? How about a healthy cooking class video?
Hi Victoria! Thanks for the feedback! It’s just a matter of time, I’ve been asked to do yoga videos before and just haven’t gotten it done! I do have a couple on YouTube, including THIS ONE – and I’ll let you know as I get some more done! Thanks for following along with the newsletter, I’ll make sure to keep you updated on more videos! Lots of love from Romania!