Remember, the cleanse is a jump start to having a healthier body, a clearer mind, and a deeper sense of conscious awareness. It's a way of setting into motion your own personal revolution so that you might contribute to an even broader revolution. You don't have to maintain it forever, however; that will be up to you. (You might want to check out www.drgreger.org/DVDs/ for a good overview of the recent scientific nutrition literature.)
People often ask me about "discipline." They worry that they won't be able to get through the cleanse or do it perfectly. Here's what I tell them: challenge yourself, but don't make yourself (or others around you) crazy. Do the best you can. If something, such as soy milk, has a tiny bit of sweetener in it and you can't find one that doesn't, enjoy it without worry. If it's your birthday or anniversary, have a glass of champagne (unless you think you are an alcoholic and this would become a slippery slope). If you are at someone's dinner party and they have absolutely nothing you can eat except the pasta and it's not gluten-free, have the pasta and then pick back up the next day. Our goal is progress, not perfection! This won't be a piece of cake (okay, pun intended), but it shouldn't be oh-so-difficult. The first few days will be the hardest, and then you will find your footing and off you'll go! For many people, it's easier to do the cleanse with friends so you can check in with and support one another. Some people start blog groups so they can share recipes and fellow- ship. You might have a willing partner or spouse who is interested, or you may entice your entire office to join in, which always makes the cleanse a fun and interesting event. Often enough, though, you will be on your own, which is just fine, too!
And know this: even if you decide that it's just too difficult to give up the Big Five all at once, you can choose to abstain from just one or two of the substances and make that your cleanse. That's okay; next time around, maybe you'll try more. I would suggest starting off with eliminating animal products if you have to choose just one. But do challenge yourself to go beyond what's comfortable and see if you can't go full throttle!
However you go about doing the cleanse, the journey will be uniquely yours, and the changes you experience will be perfect and appropriate for you. Get inspiration from your peers, but trust that your soul knows exactly what it needs to progress and thrive. Listen to the wisdom that will whisper to you along the way, and may you realize the shift in your life that you always knew was possible.