Being passionate about changing your lifestyle and getting negative feedback for it can make anyone a bit depressed and stressed.
It’s absolutely normal to feel like an outsider for a while. But at some point, you need to stand up for yourself and for what you believe in and set strong boundaries.
That’s where I come in.
I want to share with you 5 helpful tips that for new vegans that will bring value if you try them out. I’ve been where you are and I wish someone honestly told me about how to manage the stress and overwhelm that comes with being vegan.
I made many mistakes and fell into an even deeper depression after transitioning so I know what errors to avoid and what to add to your to-do list immediately.
Being new at anything is just an opportunity to be curious and feel like a kid again. Remember how some time ago you actually enjoyed exploring new territories? How you felt excited when you were thrown into a pool and had to figure out how to swim? Okay, that last one is probably a bit far-fetched but you know what I mean.
Let this era be exciting and try to look at it as an adventure.
Here are my best helpful tips for new vegans:
- Have a plan that is made by you and for you.
No one knows more about what makes you tick than you. You’ve changed for better in the past. You’ve made progress. What was that secret sauce that made it all happen? Once you find it – and perhaps it will take some time to get to the bottom of it – you have the foundation on which you can build everything else. Know what motivates you and plan it out from there.
- Focus on the easy parts of the change first.
Maybe you are addicted to dairy, or maybe you really hate the idea of having to give up those baked goodies from your local bakery. Whatever that thing that you fear changing is, go in the opposite direction and start making progress there.
Remove animal skin from your wardrobe, donate jars of honey to a shelter or simply replace pig meat with a plant-based alternative. Do what you are willing to do first and then when you are ready you will change everything else as well.
- Know who you are before you try to change others.
The most innocent mistake that cost some of us friends at the beginning is getting too passionate about sharing what we’ve learnt with others. And I hate calling it a mistake because it is absolutely not but sadly we are so offended by that which is dark and bloody yet we pay for it, that we get triggered when someone calls us out.
Learn about the death industries and gain the necessary knowledge before you go out and share it with those you love most. I know this is slightly controversial to say but the fact is, you will lose friends if you start pushing your views on them without having the strategy on how to do it effectively – or if you even should do it in the first place.
Before you try to change others, get to know what type of an activist you want to be because you will be seen as one, whether you like it or not. Once you stop eating other animals, you are a spokesperson for the animal liberation movement and you will want to make yourself proud.
- Invest in your mental health.
One day you will find me shouting from the literal rooftop about how important it is to put your mental health first. Therapy, pills, meditation, CBT, DBT and having a good psychiatrist is what keeps me alive.
It’s not a secret that I’ve been suicidal since I was 8 and that I have a history of self-harm. But you know why I manage to stay alive even when I have to physically hold myself down to not go and kill myself? Because when I was 18 I decided to put my mental health first and I have been doing it ever since.
Living vegan and being aware of the horrors that are happening in buildings around me (quite literally since I currently live next to a piggery and a dairy farm) is breaking my heart.
Investing in my mental health is not an option, it is a NECESSITY.
- Know WHO you are doing this for.
If I went vegan because someone convinced me or to impress a loved one, I would fail in less than a month after giving up animal products. The reason why I have been plant-based for 6 years is very simple actually.
I KNOW WHO I AM DOING THIS FOR.
The minute I saw a photo of a cow hanging upside down with her throat cut I knew my life would never be the same again. It wasn’t a choice to go vegan, it was a shift in reality. I was mentally and physically unable to go 5 minutes back in the past and choose to not see it.
It will be the same for you if you dig deep and get very clear on WHO and WHY you are going vegan for.
I promise you that you have and know everything you need to have and know to win in this area of your life.
You’re not curing cancer or trying to send humans to Neptune. You’re going vegan, mate. If there is one thing I know about you is that you freaking got this.
Having a vision of a kinder world where all individuals are free to LIVE if they choose to do so, is what helps us get out of bed in the morning. We know what is currently happening, but we also know that we can do something about it.
There may be luck involved in who wins the battles, but the war is won by those who don’t stop until the enemy is down.
We are not soldiers, but we are fighting a cruel system and honestly, with there beings trillions of murdered individuals and billions of humans having blood on their hands, we might as well look at it as a warzone we are entering.
If you want more tips and advice on how to create a sustainable vegan lifestyle, please make sure you are following me on Instagram and Pinterest.