Last week I was reading an article on The Kitchn website, titled '5 Things I Wish Someone Had Told Me About Meal Planning 5 Years Ago'. I was expecting to skim through it, but the number one point made me pause:
I'm embarrassed to admit the number of times I've Googled "best meal planning system." Maybe I need to move to a program that throws all the ingredients for my chosen recipes into a shopping list? Or maybe I need a program that syncs my calendars...Let me save you some time and agony: There is no perfect meal planning system. Jumping around and dabbling in different setups, especially when you're trying to get the habit going, will only distract and delay you. My advice? Pick one system and stick with it for at least a month. Go digital or go old-school, but stop jumping ship too soon. Once you've discovered how you like to work and plan out your week, you can tweak your system as needed. But you just have to get into the habit first. All the other stuff is fluff.
It reminded me of the habit so many people have of waiting until things are perfect before making a healthy change. Instead of muddling through now, they put off the goal until everything is just right: until they find the perfect app or eating plan; until life is quiet; the kids are settled in school; they have an easy week at work; they've been able to afford the latest whizz-bang juicer, soup maker or food processor. And the goal gets delayed and delayed and delayed.
But you know what, there is no perfect time. There's no one moment, app, book, article, piece of kitchen equipment, or food that is going to cure your diet and turn you into a no-sugar, Paleo, clean eating, green-juicing god or goddess.
Life is complicated, messy and full of ups and downs and healthy eating is exactly the same. Changing the way you eat is also complicated and messy, FULL of false starts, successes, failures, times when you eat perfectly and times when a bowl of chips calls out to you and says, "I am dinner".
That's the way it is. That's normal. That's what it means to be human.
So stop waiting. Stop waiting for the perfect time and the perfect meal plan. Just stop waiting.
Change something today. Order a small coffee instead of a large, eat a piece of fruit this afternoon, restrict yourself to just one glass of wine tonight, make a cucumber salad, go for a 10 minute walk during your lunch break. If you're not feeling well then start making changes today.