I used to read about vegans and think, “Ugh, too pure. Too healthy. How can they forego yummy cheese, etc.?” It kind of made me hate them.
Hopefully I won’t make you hate me with this post. I just want to share 8 ways that eating vegan (plus avoiding sugar, caffeine, gluten, and **almost** all wine…) has made me a better editor in the past month.
- Concentration: once the detox headache lifted… yes, that did take a full work week… my ability to focus has improved about 1500%. I’m almost at WonderWoman level. I barely need to tap on the keyboard now.
- The Bearable Lightness of Being: shedding a few extra kilos means I feel happier… including feeling more optimistic and excited about every job that crosses my inbox. This spills over to more joyful track changes. That’s not saying I’ve gone all soft. But I serve up a few more compliments before zeroing in on what needs improvement.
- Coffee ruled my existence. I know we all joke about how we can’t live without coffee… but I literally used to wake up thinking, “Okay, cool, I can go make a coffee.” Before any other thought. That’s a sure sign of addiction. Now I slowly wake up and don’t need a fix to manage the morning rush. I was swinging from latte to latte much like a hyped-up monkey traversing the Amazon jungle. Skype call with a client? Lemme just make a coffee to “concentrate” better. No longer. I don’t have those caffeine rushes and subsequent lows where I’m listening but my mind is also doing backflips over my bowl of sugary jittery milky distraction.
- Higher vibrations=better ideas. I was on a Skype call with one of my first clients about his inspirational novel (which went on to win a Silver medal in the Living Now Book Awards) when he mentioned in passing that eating pork lowers our vibration to an all-time low. I replied that my daughter vetoed eating pork a long time prior because her loveys were cute little pigs. At the time, reading Cormac McCarthy’s The Road had put me off eating pork anyway, but at my in-laws or where it was rude not to, I’d go along with it. Now I get it. Not eating meat has made me feel more attuned. As an editor that’s a good thing. It means that I am reading not only the words but the intention behind the words, which helps me help writers de-fluff the essence.
- No need to make lunch. I’ve learned how to cook with meal plans, so I now cook only in the evening and always have a serving leftover for lunch the next day. This has cut down my lunch-prep time to about 3 minutes. Not that I was whipping up gourmet feasts for myself every noon, but even pasta & pesto, or chucking together a salad used to eat up a good 10+ minutes.
- Energy levels! I have those now. After years with babies and young kids my energy levels were shockingly low. Hence the coffee addiction. Now I can edit for longer stretches of time because I’m not beyond exhausted.
- Rebooted Lizzie. I don’t know what it was, but kicking sugar, wheat, dairy, meat, wine, and coffee kind of restored me to pure Lizzie. I’ve gone way back. Maybe to carefree childhood alpha-Lizzie. I have better boundaries so client work isn’t swamping me. I am more clear on what I’m delivering and what they need to provide. The whole scope is easier to visualize and achieve because things feel easier. I think it’s because I never thought I could cut those crutches of sugar, etc. etc. out of my diet. Doing it and surviving that week-long headache made me realize I can do anything.
- Mo’ money. Eating hummus and kidney beans is cheaper. I’m trading meatballs for Superga sneakers since the dress code in Stockholm appears to be black from neck to ankle and then… white trainers. Hard to keep pristine. Hence mo’ money comes in handy.
Okay, you may be thinking, “Too pure! Gimme a hunk of Camembert and a cappuccino pronto!” You may sort of hate me by now. (Sorry!) The thing is though, I’m too calm to worry about that. Now that sugar’s left the building.
Just don’t take my 4 squares of 70% dark chocolate away. I do enjoy that tiny bit of bad… or I may never be able to edit another dark thriller, bittersweet novel, coming of age shocker, or humorous parenting vent again ’cause I’ll be all ‘om’ and levitating on the ceiling…