One Month Without *No Cheese November*

So I have been sitting with a special idea for YEARS, and finally, I am living it out..

I would say I live a very indulgent life, in the sense that I basically do what I want, when I want, how I want. I consistently indulge my sense of taste, sound, conversation, sensation, over all consumption to my own liking.  To say ‘no’ to myself is something I do not do much, especially since I tend to think I live an overall healthy lifestyle. As much as I consistently live a life of indulging my senses and acting upon my cravings, I am also a consistent Vipassana attendee and practitioner, a fan of fasting, and overall, I guess, a fan of challenging myself. 

Thank You, Aries Sun.

So I have decided to embark on a journey of giving up one thing for one month for the next year.  I mark the month from Full Moon to Full Moon, with each month giving myself a new challenge. My list of ideas includes things such as abstaining from social media, caffeine, sex, buying plastic, and eating after 7pm.

In November I challenged myself to give up cheese.  My step-father had just visited for a week, and my cheese intake during those days was way higher than usual; my body was asking for a break, so making the choice to give up cheese this month was pretty simple.

So how did it go?

The month went by quickly and I was hardly tempted to eat cheese, except for at the Bio-Market where they have cheese samples.  I have been eating vegetarian since 2007 and usually eat about 80 percent vegan anyways.

Ok, obviously I took this first months’ challenge very easy on myself. 

I made it through the four weeks without intentionally eating cheese. Only one time I ordered a falafel during the month, and the man preparing my food had sprinkled Feta on my meal, definitely with kind intentions, but not realizing I would have preferred it without.  I ate the falafel and definitely felt a bit disappointed to have my challenge well, ‘challenged’, without me choosing it.

At the end of the month I definitely felt happier to have begun this overall ‘Challenge’ than to have given up cheese for four weeks.  The practice of abstaining from something feels powerful.  I am stronger than my cravings, and I am stronger than my temporary desires.  Not eating cheese left me feeling lighter and my skin a bit clearer, but I know this would only be amplified when I give up ALL dairy… 

I’ll save that for another month.

I am excited for this journey as I move through it with the intention to live a simpler life, to lower my consumption, and make my footstep just a little bit lighter on this Earth.  I truly believe each decision we ALL make impacts the whole, be it with the meals we eat, what we buy, or how we spend our time.  I am committed to self-growth, and I hope that my actions can inspire you to also live more intentionally.

So tell me, what would you be ready to give up for a month?