The Healthy Art of Common Sense Living - Common Sense Living Newsletter
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The Healthy Art of Common Sense Living

Jun 12, 2015


I spent 8 hours on a flight bent over in an awkward position trying to get a few minutes of sleep. And woke up aching everywhere. No problem. I just popped a crocin.

It ended up being too cold in France where I was, and I got quite sick. No problem. I just popped a crocin.

It's become a natural and automatic response to 'pop a crocin' for the physical discomfort we feel, more so every day as we get older. So much so that I'm not even bothering to capitalize the word crocin, it's not even a proper noun for me anymore, it's a part of life.

We know, without a doubt, that taking unnecessary drugs, even something quite as mild as a crocin is not good for us. It's not making us any healthier. It's not fixing any of our illnesses - just suppressing symptoms and helping us forget about them for a while.

So what do you do about those aches and pains that plague, if not pop a crocin?

What do you do about the creaking of bones and pounding of heads that it seems keep recurring especially as we get older?

Are we doing what we can to live in the best of health for our age? Or are we dragging from day to day fighting chronic fatigue and niggling sicknesses?

I met a woman recently who was well in her 60s and prompted me to ask, 'How on earth do you have more energy than me?'

She looked great, had a glowing smile, the energy of an energizer bunny, ran an international organization, and was always in a great mood ready to share the wisdom she'd collected over the years.

'It's just good old clean living,' she said in answer to my question.

Eat healthy, sleep well, breathe deeply, move harmoniously - Jean-Pierre Barral
Source: PathDoc / Shutterstock

'Clean living' is such a great concept. It's about making conscious, informed decisions to live a healthier life.

The best thing about it is that it doesn't mean one particular life - one particular diet, or exercise regime, one particular philosophy of wellness or fitness.

It just means discovering the ideal way of living that suits your environment, your body, your age, your lifestyle... in fact, we'd like to call it common sense living.

So how do you design a common sense lifestyle for yourself? You pause before making choices in every area of life, consciously picking a healthful choice over a neutral or harmful one. You examine...

The air you breathe... depending on your environment the air you breathe may or may not always suit you. If you lived in Bangalore, for example, and had a pollen allergy, you would be constantly unwell. If you lived in a city like Mumbai where the pollution levels are through the roof, you might be plagued by respiratory disorders - persistent coughing, wheezing, sniffling. Most people just live with it. Others take some action to counter this. Waking up early to practice pranayama  (yogic breathing) to clean and strengthen their lungs, for example. Others might choose ways to purify the air within their homes such as keeping a footwear-free home, frequent vacuuming and mopping, keeping air-cleansing indoor plants such as aloe Vera, or using a dehumidifier to control the humidity and allergen levels inside the house.

The food you eat... over the years the food we have access to has changed. Until a few years ago we didn't have much packaged, processed food in our kitchens or our stores. Now, they are everywhere. Our diets have moving from meals mostly prepared with fresh ingredients, roughly ground atta, wild rice, unpolished dals, to packaged ingredients, modified vegetables, bleached flour, polished rice, etc. The effects of the latter can be harmful for some of us.

When we are young we can really eat almost anything and get away with it. Over time our capacity to digest and bounce back from eating rubbish diminishes. At this point it becomes a conscious effort to choose natural, healthful foods that agree with us, that can strengthen and heal us, over food that might have little or no nutritional value. Whatever the food may be, whatever your chosen cuisine, there is always a healthy choice.  Common sense living says discover and choose that healthy option.

The moves you make... in youth we often swing from rigorous exercise to periods of indulgent laziness. As we age we can often do neither... we can't run thousands of miles on treadmills without hurting our knees, but we also can't sit for hours without hurting our knees. Some can, of course. But that's the point. Have you discovered what's right for you and do you practice that, or do you spend more time complaining about your aching back and creaking bones? Maybe walking is right for you, or yoga. Maybe aerobics or swimming, or weight training. Again, the point is not what you do, but that you do something, and that it's right for you.

The thoughts you think... Try this now: sit up straighter and pull your shoulders back. Do you feel more relaxed? The effect is immediate. Because mind and body are that closely connected. Getting older and a lot of the ailments that it brings are often directly related to your thoughts. They stem from stress and worry, and troubles at work and home. When making healthy choices for your new common sense life, also choose healthy, positive thoughts. To focus your thoughts on the positive, try these ideas - keep a gratitude journal and remember to acknowledge things that go right, focus within yourself for a few minutes through writing or meditation, spend time with loved ones, and on activities that bring you pleasure.

This common sense really applies in every area of life... it's the art of the conscious pause... before you lose your temper, before you put that extra spoonful of sugar in your tea, before you light up that cigarette, before you sacrifice the sleep you need... pause. And make a healthier choice.

You won't ever need anyone to lean on, because you can always be the strongest person you know. A happy mind is a happy body. A happy body is a happy life. Adopt common sense living, and live with a spring in your step as long as you live.


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5 Responses to "The Healthy Art of Common Sense Living"

Nalin Parekh

18 Jun, 2015

I am a Sr citizen( Engineer turned Finance consultant).My Happiness Formula is BALANCE LIFE with TIME,HEALTH,OCCUPATION & MONEY. I practiced this and teach to the youngsters too.

Vikas Morje

14 Jun, 2015

What you have written here really helps, I have experienced this. Thanks for the reminder.

Like (1)


12 Jun, 2015


Sanjiv Dua

12 Jun, 2015

The transript could'nt be more refreshing and revealing. It is a superb effort and the flow of words is so honest and simple as pure water from a brook.Thank You.

Shyamal Dey Biswas

12 Jun, 2015

Dear ms.Anisa Virji, Thank you so much for presenting this very precious article to the readers of Common Sense Living. I do take this opportunity to attach my article on Good Health & Sound Mind separately which might supplement your article atleast to some extend. Kind regards.Shyamal Dey Biswas.


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