Let me introduce myself. My name is Mark Sisson. I’m 63 years young. I live and work in Malibu, California. In a past life I was a professional marathoner and triathlete. Now my life goal is to help 100 million people get healthy. I started this blog in 2006 to empower people to take full responsibility for their own health and enjoyment of life by investigating, discussing, and critically rethinking everything we’ve assumed to be true about health and wellness...Tell Me More
Yesterday, we gave some somewhat humorous rejoinders to the common challenges we get from people who just don’t get the Primal Blueprint. Jokes are good for the closed-minded among us who’d never actually listen, but what about the people who really do show interest in the lifestyle? What about friends, family, or co-workers – people you actually have a shot at getting through to – who could use a little nudge in the right direction, away from CW and toward Grok?
It can be incredibly frustrating when people you care about can’t seem to shake CW and give the PB a shot. Its tenets are logical, scientifically sound, and there is ample anecdotal evidence that it really does work – but because they tend to contradict everything most people have ever been taught about food, exercise, and living, it’s easier to ignore them. Or if you are lucky enough to catch a skeptic’s ear, there’s usually some trigger word or phrase (“saturated fat,” anyone?) that causes a meltdown and renders further discussion pointless.
So, in just such a (common) situation, what is the Primal evangelist to do? How are you going to spread the word without alienating your intended audience? And, perhaps most importantly, how might you get through to them without going crazy yourself?
A number of you have expressed a desire to have a handy, go-to quick summary of the basics of the PB for those occasions when you have neither the time nor the inclination to spend ten minutes describing what you do and why you do it. Forum member Cameron Perry said it best:
I do want to echo Jedi’s sentiment in that it’s hard when friends and family don’t really “get it.” Some shake their head. Others go overboard in trying to over-accommodate the primal menu when we share meals (I try to explain the 80% idea). Many tend to look at it as “a Diet” (capital D – like weight watchers) rather than “diet.” Why is that “D” word so ingrained into our heads that we think it’s a set period of time where you eat food you hate? I’m eating food I love (hello – whole avocados!) AND I’m maintaining my weight while losing fat and getting stronger. It’s exactly as you teach, Mark – this should be enjoyable and good for us. I’ve never been healthier or happier with how I’m living. It’s great!
Cameron’s social challenges are echoed by some members of the forum in this thread, so I came up with a simple PDF explaining what we do and why we do it as a partial solution. I don’t delve too deep into the specifics, but I do give the evolutionary logic behind the Primal Blueprint and list some of the benefits a Primal newbie can expect after adopting the lifestyle. My staff and I are confident that anyone with an open mind, a casual knowledge of evolution and natural selection, and a desire to get healthy will find it persuasive and impossible to completely ignore. At the very least, they’ll come check out the site.
Getting the word out about healthy Primal living is more important than ever. Bad habits are asserting themselves and we, as a society, are living ever more unhealthily. Increasing incidences of highly preventable diseases like diabetes, obesity, heart disease, cancer, and Alzheimer’s won’t just affect the patients themselves and their immediate families; society as a whole will bear the burden with rising health care costs and higher taxes.
Now, I’m not asking you to wear a loincloth, carry a spear, and go hand out flyers in some downtown square, nor am I asking you to put on your short sleeve shirt and tie and go door-to-door. We don’t want to scare people away! But we do want more people to know about what we’re doing. I think we can really help, and you guys are a huge part of making that happen. Next time someone comments on your weird food, or your uncle comes home with a bag full of statins, slip them a flyer. If your co-workers give you the look during lunch, email them the PDF. If they like what they hear, give them a copy of the book or tell them about it and direct them to the Primal Blueprint 101 page.
So, onward, good Primal soldiers: pack your knapsacks with pemmican and nuts, slip on your Vibram Fivefingers, print out a few flyers, and pound the pavement (try to land on the balls of your feet, so as not to incur joint damage!)! Good luck, and thank you!
Update: The new PDF now has a Grok logo in the background.