The Art of a Great Paleo Relationship


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Relationships are art and paleo is your canvas.

It’s true.

There you are making your way in a relationship and suddenly (or not so suddenly) you go paleo.

And you change.

What you do, how you eat, what you believe.

And if you are in relationship with someone who does the same, you can paint away quite happily, creating your new life, moving slowly, buying fourths of cattle, justifying the expense of avocado against the cost of health insurance.

It’s pretty easy to live in relationship with someone else paleo. But what if only one of you adopts the lifestyle?

What if he’s Picasso, all angles and weird faces? And you’re Monet, all shimmering light and pretty landscapes?  A Cubist and an Impressionist. A person living paleo, the other, well, not.

And just who thought that modern stuff was art in the first place, huh? 😉

It is much more challenging to to live alongside someone who thinks, eats, lives differently to the way you do.

But the development of skills required to build a great relationship with those conditions is hugely rewarding.

Certainly, they can rock your world. All of it, not just your relationship.

You are part of a couple but you’re also an individual. You can operate independently within a shared environment even if you live differently for a while. Even a long while.

We do it all the time when we’re out and about in the world.

But it becomes more intense when we live under the same roof and have higher expectations.

So what makes a great artist?

Is it the vision, the brushwork or the passion? Can Picasso and Monet together paint a pleasing scene?

Listen up!

If you can master the following, your whole life will flourish.

These points deserve some attention.

And your spouse will demand it.

1. Empathy

An artist cannot create a masterpiece unless he feels how his subjects feel. He projects and through that understanding creates his art. Put yourself in your spouse’s shoes. Remember how it felt for you before you went paleo. And how it feels for them now. Use that to guide you as you go your paleo way.

2. Patience

Artists know it takes a long time to produce quality. Wait for your spouse to catch up. Know that many changes are happening under the surface even if they aren’t apparent. In an intimate relationship, one person cannot change so dramatically without affecting the other.

3. Focus

I hear Picasso was a pretty intense guy. Take his lead. Get your game down. Practice your paleo skills. Don’t worry about anyone else for now.

4. Communication

The power of great art is that it communicates. Not just an image but an emotion, a feeling. Do the same. With actions and results. Not words. Stop talking and start doing. It is far more effective.

5. Action

No art was produced without the risk of beginning. Start where you are. You are creating your new life. Take one step forward. Rinse, repeat. That’s how we get where we want to be.

6. Listening

Artists listen and observe. They reflect. Intently. Pay attention to the cues your spouse is providing you. Become a master of observation. Slow down when they’re telling you, however they’re telling you. Don’t push.

7. Tolerance

Great artists, leaders, teachers are able to bring together disparate viewpoints and integrate them. Respect your spouse’s beliefs even if they don’t jive with yours. Work to build those divergent approaches together. Understanding is essential to a life of serenity and progress.

8. Gratitude

Monet once said, ” Thanks to my work everything’s going well; it’s a great consolation.” We are privileged. Be thankful for what, and who, you have. Even if it’s far from perfect.

9. Limits

Da Vinci was a rabid perfectionist and critic of his own work. But he was so benevolent he would feed all his friends, rich or poor. On the one hand he was uncompromising, on the other generous to a fault. What are you prepared to accept? What is most important to you? Stand up for what you strongly believe in, respect the rest.

10. Adaptation

Many of the great artists worked in different mediums. They adapted. Matisse painted, scultped, etched and made art from cut paper. You wouldn’t be here if your ancestors hadn’t had this skill down. Use it. Change to suit your circumstances but do it while holding on to your core beliefs. And know that others have the ability to do so too. They may not be doing it right now (they may be too busy adapting elsewhere) but there is always potential. Be flexible. Compromise. Negotiate.

Can you imagine what Picasso and Monet could have produced if they’d worked together? Each staying true to their individual styles but merging them together on one canvas? The big bold colors, the angles and lines of Picasso blended with the subtlety and light shimmers of Monet? I think it would have been awesome.

Great artists refine their paintings until they are satisfied. They rarely give up and they keep the end scene in mind. Belief and passion drive them, they are dogged. They keep on keeping on until their art somehow never perfect. But complete.

Refine these skills until they’re sharp and polished. Become a great artist and mentor your fellow creator along the way too. These skills are your brushes; your attitudes, your paint. Blend your styles, practice brushwork, try new colors, create a new genre.

Finesse it, improve it. Push yourself. Relax. And one day stand back, survey your painting and wonder.

Have you created your own paleo/non-paleo masterpiece?

How do you craft your paleo relationship? Is it starting to come together or are you still seeking inspiration? Let me know in the comments!

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Written by 

Alison Golden writes on the topic of paleo over at Paleo/NonPaleo. She aims to share ideas, inspire and motivate readers by teaching them how to live paleo in a non-paleo world. She is also the author of the bestselling book, The Modern, No-Nonsense Guide to Paleo, a unique tool that gives the reader hundreds of strategies to navigate the learning process to successful paleo living.

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