When eating is like vacuuming
Click to read the FIRST and SECOND posts in this series of four.
I was talking to Kevin a few days ago and he mentioned that he just needs to get better at making healthy choices. If he could be better at making healthy choices then his weight and health problems would be solved and the flow-on effect of that would be enormous.
It’s important that we frame this idea differently. We aren’t learning to make ‘the healthy choice’ - you already know what that is and you wouldn’t still be looking for a solution if it was that simple. We are instead learning to make the right choice.
We arrived at this point in our lives through basing our food choices on which is going to be the most fun to eat. Most of us then switch to making ‘healthy choices’ and still continue to base our decision-making around which healthy food is going to be the most fun to eat. Eating delicious, exciting, healthy food for every meal of every day would be a great way to live! The problem is that our mindset hasn’t changed a whole lot; to the addict’s mind it is not a big leap to go from choosing exciting healthy food to choosing exciting junk food. If there’s no exciting health food around, you’re not inclined to choosing the boring health food, so the next step is to choose the junk. We need to rewire our brains to think about what’s right rather than what’s exciting.
I don’t like vacuuming but it’s something that just needs to be done. There are a million things I’d rather spend my time doing but sometimes the vacuuming just needs to be done, because it’s the right thing to do. I can make it more fun by putting some loud music on and dancing around the house but in the end it’s still vacuuming and I’d still rather do something else. I am (usually!) a responsible adult though, so I get it done.
When we can rely on ourselves to make decisions based on what’s right rather than what’s fun, then we are truly on a sustainable path. This is not to say that we can’t ever make our food more enjoyable, it’s nice to eat delicious foods. Loud music and dancing are great but the most important thing about the vacuuming is that we get it done.
Consistently making the right choice leads to a life full of fun, happiness and contentment.