The foundations of anything are often overlooked. Whether we become enamored or mesmerized by the problem itself, or by our ego’s incessant desire to vanquish, neutralize, or eradicate whatever may be troubling us, we waste precious time and energy seeking psychological freedom through the mitigation of symptoms that are largely self-created and are culturally reinforced.

In graduate school, it always struck me how much time we dedicated to diet, exercise, and smoking cessation at the exclusion of foundational conditions which made health behaviors largely inaccessible or nearly impossible to take root.

What do I mean by foundational conditions? The social, cultural, and environmental events that helped form your identity– both the helpful and the hard. This is the deep inner-work and self-inquiry that’s necessary to come above ground– to rise and meet the sun. There is no pill, wearable device, or diet for that.

Paradoxically, however, the pill, the device, or the diet will often yield this insight, too: that peace of mind and wellbeing is not something we achieve through external actions and endorsed health behaviors, but through the recognition and acceptance of our inherent divinity and wholeness. It is a conscious unlearning and relearning of what it means to be alive.

(NOTE: And then, yes, move your body, eat foods you love and that energize you, and if you need a daily nudge or reminder to meditate or walk, definitely leverage technology to help you!)

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