Kelsey Patel knows your pain—literally.
Like many, she cycled through a range of jobs that were so demanding (at one point, she worked at the US Senate), she found herself consumed by work-related stress that manifested itself throughout her entire body. “Before any of my now-consistent healing practices, I often felt anxious, bloated, and guilty—and not just about food or alcohol choices,” says the spiritual empowerment coach. “I was incapable of relaxing and taking time for myself, and I was very inconsistent in my moods and work.”
On a whim, Patel tried out buzzy Los Angeles health cafe Beaming‘s three-day, food-based cleanse to see if it would make a difference in how she was feeling. She quickly realized it was doing more than just rebooting her body. “It was detoxing other aspects of me, so I played into that and added my own elements,” says Patel, who, in addition to her healing practice, is the owner of Pure Barre in Beverly Hills and co-founder of activewear line I Am Vibes.
During that first cleanse experience, she incorporated journaling, meditation, tapping, and other spiritual components to give her mind what it needed to reset—and in the process, came up with a three-day detox that was all her own. “These aspects of the program allowed me to go a little bit deeper into all parts of my life and regain balance,” says Patel. Needless to say, she’s revisited this formula several times since.
While clean eating is a key part of Patel’s cleansing process, she stresses your meals shouldn’t be complicated. “It’s about creating simple food for yourself while taking out all of the luxuries,” she says. (Think sugar, salt, butter, and caffeine—here’s a day of detoxifying recipes to get you started.) “Removing all of your vices will simplify your diet, which then gets rid of that excess clutter in your mind.” Throughout the three days, she follows these guidelines for all of her meals.
But ultimately, it’s the self-care regimen that makes this experience so profound. “I love the healing components to this cleanse because it gives me full permission to feel from my heart as opposed to allowing my mind to always be the one in control,” Patel proclaims. And couldn’t we all use a little more of that?
Here, spiritual empowerment coach Kelsey Patel shares the three-day mind-body cleanse that she swears by.
Day 1: Set your intentions
Morning: Skip the coffee and instead pour yourself a glass of hot water with turmeric, cayenne, lemon, and honey. (Power tonic alert!)
Then, set aside some time to sit down and journal. “Write about what it is that you want to actually get rid of; what are you doing this detox for?” she says. “Think about what you’re trying to release during these three days.”
Follow up your journaling session with a 10-minute meditation. (You can always grab one from a meditation app.)
Evening: After the first day of mindful, clean eating, it’s time to unwind. “You eat your final meal, make a nice detox tea, do another meditation, and sit down for a journaling exercise,” says Patel.
While the morning was about inviting yourself to let go, the nighttime is for reevaluating.”This is when you ground yourself in the rootedness of gratitude,” she says. “Go over what you’re grateful for that day—even if you messed up or felt anxiety, write it all out.”
Day 2: Tap it out
Morning: The second day begins in the same way as the first: have your lemon-spice tonic and meditate.
Next, engage in an EFT tapping exercise. Essentially a combination of acupressure and psychology, the tapping method works to clear negative energy by stimulating certain points on the body and addressing your specific stressor out loud. (Here’s a how-to video, in case you’re a newbie.)
“Tapping is really beneficial on this day because this can be when a lot of stuff starts to come up for people,” says Patel (including, she notes, cravings). “But when that little gremlin [arises], the tapping helps move it out of your mind so you can get through the day.”
Evening: The second night also involves journaling. “If you notice that you’re releasing or shifting anything, get all of your thoughts in your journal,” she suggests. “Whether you’re craving that nightly glass of wine you typically have or whatever it may be, consciously remind yourself what you’re grateful for and why you’re going through this detox.”
Day 3: Prioritize self-care
Morning: “This is the celebration day and the culmination of everything you’ve been doing for your body,” says Patel.
Again, you’ll start this morning with a tonic and meditation, but Patel also says it’s important to notice how you feel. Gauge how much energy you have and if your mind has more of the clarity that you were seeking on day one.
Evening: The final day ends in a full detox ritual for the body, which involves an epsom salt bath and essential oils. “I recommend rubbing oils into the body and doing some light stretching so you can go to bed and feel the benefit of what it was like to do this for yourself,” says Patel.
Ideally, post-detox you’ll have cultivated some new healthy habits. Patel claims that something sticks every time she does a cleanse.
“I look at this as a reset,” says Patel. “It’s igniting a new part of myself. I believe it creates that space in my heart so I can focus on what I want to bring into the world, how I want to feel, and how beautiful it is to take time to be with myself. When both your thoughts and body are pure, you’re in alignment and it feels amazing.”
Other genius ways to cleanse your mind and body for the new year? Try this seven-day self-love reset, or check out this happiness prescription from wellness blogger Lola Berry.