Archive for September, 2011

What do you do for life?

Earlier today I was reading the Art of Non-Conformity’s latest post by Chris Guillebeau. He closes by asking, “What do you do for life?” My answer: For life, I create amazing experiences for myself and those I love. Whether it be researching all the local sports bars in the Phoenix area to learn which one will be thee best one to watch the game with fellow Packer fans to having an ice-sculpture-drink-luge carved into a country barn (representing the farm I grew up on) topped with “The Beast” from Marvel Comics (representing my husband’s favorite character) at our wedding, I live for creating amazing, unique, and memorable experiences.

And I’m looking forward to creating amazing experiences for more and more people as myself and my work develops and grows. It is what I live for! After all, what’s life if you’re not going out into the world and experiencing it to the fullest?

How about you? What do you do for life?

Grocery shopping and fast food

It is no big secret – I am not (yet!) a fan of grocery shopping. That said, up until the past few weeks, I had done well in the grocery shopping department. Every Sunday after work, I would immediately head to the bank, make my weekly deposit, and then head on over to Sprout’s Farmers Market. I even had a list – organic bananas, sweet snap peas, dark chocolate covered almonds, Luna protein bars, organic peanut butter, plums, apples, angel hair pasta, a jar of arribata sauce, meatballs, coconut milk, honey graham cereal, yogurt, and blueberries – or some combination of these items. Granted, the grocery shopping list could use some variety and be expanded. BUT, but, but! You have to remember that this is the grocery list of a not-too-long-ago eat-three-fast-food-meals-a-day kind-of girl. It’s a work in progress.

Then I decided to see how long I could go without going grocery shopping to “use what I had in the house” rather than spend money on groceries. I was attempting to save a few dollars and see if I would be able to make things stretch. NOT a good idea. As my at-home supplies began to dwindle, my craving for fast food ramped up. I held off for three days, and then found myself pulling up to the drive-through at Arby’s. At 10:35 at night. And I spent $12 on a “small” number 19 combo with a value-sized side of mozzarella sticks AND jalapeno poppers. I ate it all. In my bedroom, by myself, behind a locked door. That was Wednesday night.

Now, if I had gone grocery shopping, I know I wouldn’t have had that fast-food craving for three days. I would have nixed the craving by eating a piece of fruit or two, a protein bar, or some dark chocolate covered almonds.

Well, knowing and DOING are two very different things. With the weekend approaching, I figured I could make it through with what I had on-hand. And I did. I was missing out on my fruits and sweet snap peas, but I made it through without issue. What I didn’t do was go grocery shopping on Sunday. You would THINK I would have learned my lesson from last week; however, I didn’t have a grocery list prepared and with Brian coming down on Friday I knew that this shopping trip would need to be different – that I would need to stop at a big box store for some household necessities as well as Sprouts. And maybe it’s me being new to the area, but I was honestly intimidated. Yup, I was intimidated of going shopping at a new-to-me Wal-Mart. So, I didn’t. Still haven’t. Blargh.

So tonight, I once again found myself pulling up to the Arby’s drive-through. At $8.50, I didn’t spend as much this time around, but I was kicking myself for not manning up, making a list and heading out into the world to pick up my weekly supplies. Lesson learned from today? HONOR MY SCHEDULE and do things when I am suppose to. There is a reason I make a list one day and go shopping the next (so I only pick up what I need and will use for the week and so that I stay within my budget).

I also need to make my grocery shopping more interesting by trying new foods and perhaps even COOKING a meal or two. I think by adding variety – without overwhelming myself with recipes having tons of ingredients – AND honoring my schedule will actually have me looking forward to picking up groceries and cooking for the week.

And I share this with you because learning to respect time, intelligently grocery shop, and cook meals is a learning process. I’m not beating myself up over my trips to Arby’s. (Although their “Good Mood Food” tag line irks me to no end! Obviously, the company KNOWS that their food is addicting and temporarily elevates a person’s mood for a short period of time before crashing. And now they’re getting customers to associate good moods with Arby’s food. Somebody stop them, PLEASE!) What I am doing is understanding why those trips happened in the first place and how I can prevent myself from going that route in the future.

How many meals a week do you cook at home?

Deadlines vs goals

One of these things is not like the other. One of these things just isn’t the same. Admittedly, I’ve used deadlines countless times to amble forward on projects. That said, I can’t say when the last time was that I was MOTIVATED to put my forth my best effort by simply setting a deadline. It was always more the case of stop-procrastinating-and-get-it-done-already. Once I focused on the task at hand, I finished it and I finished it well, but the work itself wouldn’t elevate my level of thinking or challenge me to grow. The task was a hoop to jump through. And while jumping through hoops will allow you to graduate and stay employed, it does not enable you to create a legacy.

To create a legacy, you must, must, must know what you want and go after it! You must define your goals. A legacy doesn’t just happen, and a legacy certainly doesn’t happen by jumping through hoops. A legacy happens when a person has a burning desire to go after what they want in life and then persistently take action. Deadlines are not enough. When you know what you want and are working towards what you want every day, then the deadlines don’t matter. You know what you want and you know that you’ll get it – it’s just a matter of when. In the mean time, do the work.

It’s quite exciting to see a list of your goals defined – goals that YOU created and that YOU love – on paper. Even more exciting is then seeing your list of goals put in order of how they’ll be accomplished. Seeing where YOUR life is heading and being EXCITED and THRILLED about it elevates your passion and fuels your desire to do the work necessary to make the life on paper your reality.

Where’s your life heading?

Dot’s on to something!

Water aerobics, three times a week! That is the response I got from a spunky and fabulous woman named Dot who was celebrating her 81st birthday by having lunch at Red Robin with her family. I was her server. Dot looked at LEAST 15 to 20 years younger than her true age, so I just HAD to ask her what her secret was to living so vivaciously!

Above and beyond water aerobics, she said eating healthy (Red Robin, and restaurants in general, are reserved for special occasions only), keeping your mind focused on the good things in life, and NOT taking pills.

I think Dot’s on to something. 81 and vibrant. The woman’s experience speaks for itself! Now, to find a water aerobics class…

And in other news, I’ve added a new page called Quotes. There you can find all of my favorite words of wisdom and intrigue! After having all of my Facebook notes randomly deleted on Friday (including my much-loved “Quote Note”), I’ve decided to rebuild the collection on my own site. It just makes sense. Enjoy!!!

Breaking my addiction

One of the things that we’re asked to do as students at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition is to look at our own eating habits under a light of open honesty. And while I’ve always known myself as a person with a sweet tooth, what I discovered is that my sweet tooth is much more than a sweet tooth – it’s an addiction.

And how do I know it’s an addiction? Well…on Tuesday I stopped eating chocolate and drinking any kind of soda and had HUGE cravings for both, along with a headache and low energy – to the point that on Wednesday I spent an entire day lounging around doing nothing but laying poolside, watching television, and bumming out. My mood was poor and I was getting down on myself – feeling anxious about life. How crazy is it that food can have THAT much power over a person? Over me? Talk about a wake-up call.

Now that I’ve recognized that I do have an addiction to sugar – especially chocolate – here’s what I’m going to do about it:

Here’s a great article I found on breaking sugar addictions. It has some intriguing suggestions – some of which I plan on testing out – particularly the wheatgrass juice with pineapple juice. I’ve never tried wheatgrass juice, but combined with pineapple, I’d be willing to give it a try!

How about you? Do you have any food addictions? Have you broke them? If so, how’d you do it? What worked for you? What didn’t?