So you just decided you are finally going to give the lifestyle a try, and find yourself wondering where to start and how to approach the transition without its seeming overly difficult or overwhelming. Truth is, how you feel about the journey into a more compassionate way of life, will depend more on perspective than on the actual steps of the process.
Here are five ways to shift your thoughts in a positive way so you can embrace these hanges with a happy heart:
1. ‘Tis the Time for New Adventures in the Kitchen
We’ve all been through a cooking rut, getting stuck eating the same meals over and over again. Transitioning to this new lifestyle is the perfect opportunity to get out of your comfort zone and explore those fun, new ingredients that you had heard so much about but had been reluctant to try. Nothing beats adding new flavors to your repertoire and that fuzzy feeling of getting a recipe just right with a new ingredient. The best is to start by veganizing your favorite meals, the ones you love and turn to for comfort. Nailing these down in a compassionate version will bring a lot of ease to your mind.
2. Be Kind to You
Veganism is all about extending kindness to other living beings. However, often times, we forget about extending that same kindness to ourselves throughout the process. Remind yourself that you are changing your ways after having done things a certain way your entire life, so it is only normal that at times it can seem daunting. Be kind and patient with yourself; every day is a new opportunity to do it better than the day before.
3. Surround Yourself with Positive Energy from Like-Minded People
Social media will play in your favor on this one, especially if you don’t already have vegan friends or family members by your side. Luckily, there are incredible, supportive communities nowadays, both online or, with Meetups and the like, in person. Finding your tribe will make you feel understood throughout the transition, and it also happens to be an amazing way of meeting new people and making new friends from all walks of life.
4. Spend Time with Animals to Celebrate Life
There is no better way of reaffirming your choice and embracing it wholeheartedly, than spending time with rescued farm animals or other creatures who have suffered. Thankfully, there are a ton of animal sanctuaries and shelters pretty much everywhere, so find the one closest to you and spend some time bonding with these incredible beings.
5. Arm Yourself with Knowledge
The drive to live compassionately, paired with the understanding of how to thrive on a vegan diet, will make your transition a success. Basic nutritional knowledge is a must for every lifestyle, vegan or otherwise. Find reliable sources of information so you feel confident and well-informed about your daily dietary choices and are also able to answer the inevitable questions that are going to come your way because you decided to change the way you lead your life.
Mariana Prince, a Main Street Vegan Academy-certified Vegan Lifestyle Coach and Educator, is the founder of VidaVerde, a platform sharing the latest vegan news, guides, resources and recipes in Spanish. VidaVerde is all about inviting people to celebrate life in all its forms, by choosing a more loving and compassionate lifestyle. Check out VidaVerde on Instagram and Facebook.