You will find your vegetarian, vegan and/or or raw journey a lot easier if you have company and support. The buddy system is a great way to keep you going and inspired. If possible, don’t do it alone, like I did. It’s a hard and lonely road to walk.
Many of us are isolated in our transitions to a better healthier lifestyle. Often our family, spouse, co-workers and friends do not share our passion or desire for change. You may need to look outside your regular circles for guidance and support.
When I started on my vegetarian journey I was all alone and I had nobody to do this with. It was extremely difficult. This was way back in the 1989, the dark ages of the vegetarian movement, when you couldn’t even go to the conventional grocery store and buy tofu, veggie burgers or soy milk. You had to go to a small specialty store that may or may not have those items in stock and if they did it would cost you dearly.
Building a community of people to join you in the journey will give you a network to share successes, struggles and experiences. It make sit all infinitely better.
You can build or find community in many places: family, friends, support groups, join a meet-up group, hold potlucks, go to potlucks, conferences, workshops, restaurants, retreats, co-ops, buying groups, etc.
There are hundreds of online communities and social media groups ready to be our ”friends”. Today there are millions of like-minded vegetarian, vegan and raw food people who are out there supporting and they can support you.
My best advice is to get involved. Be the catalyst in your community. If your area doesn’t have a meet-up group or vegetarian, vegan or raw group then start one. Just invite people over and host an event. Follow the KISS principal of event planning and “Keep It Simple Stupid”.
Its OK to start small and have a support network of 1. Then over time gradually increase it. Do not get discouraged if it takes a long time to build your team. It takes time to find and cultivate meaningful relations.
Awhile back I started a group with a dear friend of mine Beth Martens (www.bethmartens.com). It’s a monthly free event in our city that we call “Alive” which consists of a fusion of Kirtan chanting, Yoga, and Raw Food potluck ( see my video blog of November 24, 2010 : Alive Raw Yoga Kirtan Potluck Fusion Party ).
In December, we started the bi-monthly Alive events in San Francisco, spearheaded by the fabulous Amber Zuckswert of www.epicself.com.
You can find us online on Facebook to see how we do it. People are loving it and it has really helped many of us create a community for ourselves. We hope to add events in several cities soon as we aim to spread our support network wider.
If you want to throw an Alive event in your city please contact me and we can collaborate together. It’s fun, inspiring and a tremendous way to kick start your local resources.
Really, my point is this. You don’t have to do this alone. The journey is always easier and better if you have someone along for the ride.
Dear Reader: Time to share. How have you been able to create a support network for yourself ?