Short of shunning unhealthy foods forever, I am more of a realistically healthy eater. This means that I am a reformed junkie with some semblance of desire to eat in a more healthy way without depriving myself. The shift from unhealthy to healthy eating habits is a bit of a major transition. Food really affects moods and engaging in a pseudo-detox has been really very helpful for me so far.

One of the great bonuses of pseudo detox is losing some weight. While I used to really take this as a number one priority, I realized that other benefits are more supreme than shedding a few inches from my waistline. I find that the light feeling and the sound sleep and the relatively peaceful demeanor is priceless and worth all the sacrifice of satiating myself with junk food. Of course, I still munch a bit here and there (pseudo is as pseudo does), but I basically became more mindful of what goes in and how it goes out.

To accompany my food detox, I also did a bit of a mind detox. I steered clear of negative thoughts. For the longest time, I have been stuffing myself with so many things, only to realize painfully that less is actually more. I have been reading books about the elegance of simplicity. But I remained convoluted in my mind. Now that I have more singular goals on a daily basis, I have become more at peace with myself and with what I can do. The noise in my head about what needs to be accomplished has been shut off (and permanently, I hope!) and was replaced with a general calm assessment of my life, its current state, and the possible directions that it can take from here.

It’s easier said that done. As time goes by, it gets so easy to fall into the “trivial many” trap. It’s hard to focus on the essential few. I already ditched big distractions from social media accounts last year. But I still have that noise. So much noise, in fact, that I had to literally stop the usual way I live my life and rearrange it in a very different way. It’s turning out great again and things are picking up. Surely, I realize that I cannot go back in the old way of doing things that had me stuck in a rut in the first place. I just have to make some changes if I really want to improve my life. This improvement may not exactly pan out according to the world’s standards but I am perfectly fine with it.

I was writing an article and I got some feedback that it was convoluted. In fact, at the time of writing, my mind was wired in different messy directions. I think I will have to revisit the draft to see where I can make punchier lines to firm it up. And it’s like that in my life, too, in general. I needed some time to sleep on it and wake up with fresher eyes to look at the manuscript of my life. And I can edit some lines here and there so that I can get to the right mix, the right blend of ideas and words and dreams and realities.

To make a good detox, first you need to realize that you are being poisoned by not caring about yourself as much as you should. And this is how I discovered that I needed to make some changes about my life. It was a good but painful, jolting experience—to learn to slow down in one of the hardest ways for a workaholic. At least the lesson learned will not be easily forgotten after the pain of actual experience.

The temptation to continue to poison myself or incense myself with old ways of doing things is so strong. But I think of the little progress I have made with my microscopic, life editing eyes. And I realize that I cannot go back. I just have to move forward and expect new results after trying a different thing altogether.

Like many things, it is hard to ascertain how this will turn out. But I am taking my chances. Pseudo-detox may lead to a full life-giving detox or a relapse. I choose to take risks that lead me to the former than go back to a comfort zone that will definitely take me to the latter.