Speed up to slow down – the art of turning 3 days into 1 – breaking habits, self discipline and maximising time!
Never before has chronic lifestyle disease affected so many people.
Never before has consciousness reached the levels it has.
And now more than ever people are pushing back against animal cruelty and animal husbandry.
Leonardo Da Vinci was right:
“The time will come when men such as I will look upon the murder of animals as they now look on the murder of men.”
Only now, that mother earth is crippled and maimed from the actions of only one species, only now are people consciously making choices to live environmentally friendly, compassionate lives
Along with these great changes, comes a change in food choices, and therefore a change in habits, causing stress for many people. A shift to a plant-based diet is necessary for the continuation of not only the lives of animals, but the survival of the planet and the human species too. Yes, our future depends on a shift in food choices!
And whilst all of this may be known, we, mums, dads, caregivers, WE need to implement this new way of living, a new way of cooking and a new way of shopping into our already busy lives. Most of us are not only mastering the art of slaying monsters, being hairdressers, teachers, nurses, chefs, business gurus, mindful yogis, nose wipers, homemakers, but we are trying to make conscious changes too. And there is NEVER enough time in the day!
Have you noticed we all seem to be in a “who is the busiest”? competition
I hear this conversation between friends almost daily.
Friend 1: “How has your day been?” Friend 2: “So busy”
Friend 2: “And how has your been?” Friend 1: “You have no idea…so so sooo busy”
🙂 I am pretty sure you can relate!!
So this post, is not trying to make your life busier, but to make you less busy, and to help you create more time to make healthy, balanced plant-based meals for your family, that they will love every time. Believe me, I am in the exact same position as you!
So how can we manipulate time and how can we better use it to our advantage? All great performers and the elite performers use time completely differently than the people that perform at an average level. So how can we learn from the best and what can we do to create more time in our day?
- Get started earlier and keep your mornings focused – this is how you can win the hour, the day, the week, the month, the year and your life!
- Either you will control your time or your time will control you. When you wake up in the morning – don’t look at your phone for 30min. Rather get out of bed, meditate, write a gratitude journal, watch the sunrise,walk the dog (or cat) or do a stretch. Prove to yourself that you control your time and not your phone. Just this small action will send a message to your brain that you are, in fact, in control of your time. This small daily ritual will revolutionise your life!
- Why does 24hrs-in-a-day have to apply to you? Have you ever got more done in 4-5 hours than an average day? Most people measure a day in 24 hours, but you can have more days in a day (mini days). Shrink you days into mini days and you will find you get the same things done in 6 hours than you used to get in a whole day. Think of your day like a race…by setting up your day as “short sprints” instead of a marathon, you will find yourself ticking off your to-do list faster than you ever imagined.
- Self Discipline: As an athlete I can tell you that this is the one and only skill you need to achieve your goals and find happiness. When it comes to making changes in your life, self-discipline is the number one trait needed to accomplish your goals, lead a healthy lifestyle and ultimately be happy!
According to a 2013 study by Wilhelm Hoffman, people with high self-control are happier than those without. The study discovered this is true because the self-disciplined subjects spent less time considering whether or not to indulge in behaviors detrimental to their health. Rather they were able to make positive decisions more easily. Their feelings did not affect their decision making – they used rational thought, and then acted accordingly.
Why is Self Discipline so critical? Because this is the skill needed for change and to break old habits. It is also the skill needed to maximise time in your day and to “get the proverbial done!” faster and more efficiently!
Improving your self discipline means changing up your normal routine, which can be uncomfortable. Charles Duhigg, author of The Power of Habit, explains that “habit behaviours are traced to a part of the brain called the basal ganglia – a portion of the brain associated with emotions, patterns, and memories. Decisions, on the other hand, are made in the prefrontal cortex, a completely different area. When a behaviour becomes habit, we stop using our decision-making skills and instead function on auto-pilot. Therefore, breaking a bad habit and building a new, positive, habit no longer requires us to make active decisions.”
The act of self-discipline will allow you to pre prepare, pre plan and make rational decisions that will reduce stress and “last minute” habit meals
Despite what many may think, self-discipline is a learned behaviour. It requires practice and repetition in your day-to-day life. And you need to keep reinforcing your WHY? Why am I doing this? Why am I committed to this process? Why am I passionate about this? The why needs to remain strong in order to improve discipline, maximise time and make changes. Be committed to the process!
Some ways I practise daily self-discipline:
- Remove temptations.Self-control is often easiest when abiding by the old saying, “out of sight, out of mind.”
- Eat regularly and healthily.Studies have shown that low blood sugar often weakens a person’s resolve. When you’re hungry, your ability to concentrate suffers as your brain is not functioning to its highest potential. Hunger makes it difficult to focus on the tasks at hand (and makes me grumpy and pessimistic.) You are much more likely to have a weakened sense of self control in all areas of our life. In order to stay on track, make sure that you snack regularly on healthy snacks. I personally make sure to always have some raw nuts, protein balls or granola on hand.
- Remember, self-discipline does not mean your new regimen needs to be entirely hard core, cold turkey, or navy-seal-like in execution. In fact, sometimes a little leeway and wiggle room results in greater success. Forgive yourself and move forward. Instituting a new way of thinking won’t always be easy or go according to your tight knit plan. You will have ups and downs, challenges successes, and flat out failures. The key is to keep moving forward. Use the hiccups in your plan as learning experiences for the future. Forgive yourself, and get back in the saddle ASAP. The longer you’re off your game, the harder it is to get back into it!
Here are a few things that you can implement right away into your weekly plan to help you eat more plant-based foods with less stress and more time!
- Mastering the art of pre-prep.
Prepare a couple of dishes on a Sunday that can be kept in the fridge or freezer. Every Sunday I make a vegan Bolognese using Fry’s Mince, a Mexican Taco Mince using Fry’s Mince, chopped walnuts, mushrooms and taco spice mix, Indian Red Lentil Dahl, a large Quinoa Salad and maybe even sweet potato mash (total cooking time – 1hr20min). These form the basis of my meals. Anything else may only take seconds to prepare. The kids love this food and so do we. And it takes the stress out of the week.
Take dahl for example: Dahl can be served in the following ways – dahl on sourdough, dahl in a buddha bowl, dahl with quinoa or rice, dahl with a toasted wrap, dahl over a sweet potato or dahl just as it is with a dollop of coconut yoghurt, dahl alongside tofu scramble
And, while the kitchen is a mess, make as much food as you can – then you only need to clean once!
- Get your chemical free fruit and veg delivered – I get mine on Friday and prepare most of it on Sunday – I keep the salads and make as we go.
- Using plant meats makes life so much easier. You make exactly what you normally make, but you switch out the animal protein for the plant protein. If the family is having a roast, pop a Fry’s Schnitzel in the toaster a few minutes before you eat and the vegan at the table is no longer relegated to the veggies only. You can still make pies, lasagne, curries, stir fries (or stir Frys ;)), spag bol, and cottage pie. If you have family members that are not prepared to try the plant meats, then prepare the meal and 2 different proteins (plant and animal) that can be added at the end of the meal prep or when you serve.
- Teach gratitude in your family – Be grateful for every meal you eat with your family and say it out loud. Gratitude trumps fussiness!
- Invest in a few cookbooks (or download free e cookbooks from the Fry’s website The Fry Family) – these will inspire you and are an endless source of great ideas!
- Freeze and don’t be afraid of frozen veg. Frozen food can be a life saver – embrace it!
- Don’t be caught in the meal trap – Buddha bowls, Jars, mix and match are your friend – you no longer have to make lasagnes or mac and cheese…a mix of a variety of foods from the fridge and leftovers can make a beautiful tasty and healthy meal.
- Simplicity is the key. So, K.I.S and do the best you can!
Let me know if you implement any or all of these tips or if you have any to add – I would love to hear from you!
Long post friends, so thank you for reading!