Posts Tagged ‘food’
Self regulation is the ability to control ourselves and not do things impulsively. This skill is like a muscle – the more we practice, the stronger it gets. Once it is strong, it is much easier to resist temptation and function according to a “plan”, rather than going with whatever comes your way or whoever applies more pressure.
In the last two posts in this series, I explained the mechanism of self regulation and shared some research on its importance, particularly in parenting. Today, I want to share some tips with you on how to strengthen the self regulation ‘muscle’. It can be easy to find self control and be the role model you want to be for your children.
There are some more important questions to ask if you want to know your partner and our topics for today are home, food, telecommunication and pets. These questions will help you find out the things you and your partner find it hard to compromise on. A good way to tell is if you are very passionate about something. It may be something that is too important to you to give up.
It is important to remember that some of the answers will change over time. We are searching for the things you think are “musts” or that you must have and are not willing to let go of. These are the issues that may become a conflict later on.
A couple of months ago, we went to visit some friends of ours who had a guest. Their guest was a young man who loved cooking but did not really think of himself as cook or a chef. To feed his love for cooking while travelling, he made a nice and easy garlic spread and which we tasted on a piece of bread. It was heavenly.
Since I love introducing the kids to special and healthy food options, I loved the idea. My kids are very much healthy eaters. When they make a sandwich it is full of vegetables and adding the garlic as a spread was a great way to add flavor to the sandwiches without adding junk to it.
When I came home, I had to try it. Here is what you do.
I love avocado. Always have. And I am very happy that my kids love avocado as well. I love avocado, but do you know what I do not like? Waste, clutter and buying products that only fit one specific purpose (well, that is a kind of waste).
A few weeks ago, I spent a week running workshops at a conference in the north of the country. The conference organizers booked for me into a serviced apartment, because they thought I would be more comfortable making my own food. Since I worked most of the day, I hardly had time to cook for myself, but in the evening and at night, when I felt hungry, I could make myself simple, yet tasty, things to eat.
When I checked what was in the apartment’s kitchen drawers and the cupboards, it hit me that everything was so organized. I compared it to my own kitchen cupboards and drawers. Ouch! That hurt!
No, they did not have all the utensils I had at home, but I could manage with everything just fine.
As a life coach, I have to keep a strong belief in the power of coaching even when those who come for coaching seem impossible to help at first. Recently, I had to question my belief when a new client came to me that made me doubt my ability to help her. After years of working with people and helping them see the amazing power of the mind, when Millie came, I had some doubts.
Millie was referred to me by a friend. He said to me, “Ronit, Millie needs to come and see you urgently”. So we scheduled a session and to my coaching deck came a gentle, beautiful 40-year-old woman with spots all over her face.
The more she told me about the problem, the more I doubted about my ability to help her. How on Earth can I help a woman with a 35-year-old skin problem? I am not a dermatologist. I panicked a bit and talked to myself, “Come on, Ronit, you’ve helped people who had taken antidepressants for 24 years, you’ve helped people who had used drugs, you’ve helped sick people. You can do this”. One side of me said, “You can do it”, while the other asked, “How?”
I had no answer.
Money is very tight in many families. We want so many things for our kids and for our family that it seems like there is never enough. This week, I had sessions with many clients who wanted to improve their financial situation. One of them earned $50,000 a year and owed $42,000. One was a single mother who had spent all her savings on tutoring. Another one spent a fortune on supplements and health professionals, and all the rest told me variation of the same story: money is tight.
Every family may reach a point in life when there is just not enough money to survive the next month. It is inevitable that some life circumstance will change the flow of money that we count on to manage our daily life. If you go over your life and ask yourself when your supply of money was at risk or when it stopped entirely, you are likely to find that it happened a lot.
We were in this situation many times in our life. It happened when Gal’s company had a wave of redundancies, whenever his contract ended somewhere in the world and we had to move ourselves from one county to another (no income, lots of expenses), after September 11 2001, when Gal had cancer and took time to recover and when we had something big and special that ate into our savings, like going overseas to see our families. Every time we stopped working, our family was at risk of not having enough to pay the bills.
Saving for a rainy day was always our solution for those situations, but saving is never enough. Sometimes, a big wave comes along and wipes you out. Gal lost his job twice after we had bought a property. We are not fortunetellers.
You may have been on a diet at some stage in your life and your diet may not have been successful. If not, I am sure you know someone who has had this experience. Dieting requires a lot of effort and it is very frustrating when it does not produce big enough results or when the effects disappear as soon as you stop the diet.
I have always believed that fat was a result of heavy thoughts, because the mind is a powerful thing. Now, I have the research to back it up.
The show “You are what you eat” showed people they had full responsibility over what they ate. I think they can call it “You are what you think”, because a recent research discovered that our thoughts have a direct impact on what we eat – we gain weight when we have “fat thoughts”.
In recent times, “light” became a keyword for food shoppers. We are convinced that in order to be healthy we need to eat “light” food – no fat, no calories, no sugar, no salt, etc. Well, our body reacts badly to it. The more we try to be healthy, the harder it is to lose weight.
Why is that?
It all started a year ago, when a regular checkup discovered I was missing some important vitamins in my body. As a very health-conscious person, I was a bit concerned. I eat very healthy food and have loads of energy, so there had been no indication anything was wrong.
My doctor was great. He did not just give me supplements but was very determined to find the source of the deficiency. I went through a series of checks that ended up discovering I do not have the enzyme required to digest lactose, the sugar in cow’s milk. It was sad to learn that (I love milk, yoghurt and cheese), but at the same time relieved, because it could have been worse.
During that period, I met a friend who had discovered she had Lupus (an autoimmune disease) and had almost died from organ failure. For the two previous years, she had taken chemotherapy medication, looked half-dead and we had all been very worried about her. When we met, she was still on the same medication, but she looked amazingly better than ever.
When I asked her how she had recovered so well, she said she had discovered she was gluten intolerant and had decided to stop eating gluten. I asked her if she had Celiac (my doctor had sent me to check that too and, thank God, I do not have it) and she said, “No, I don’t, but I figured I could try not eating gluten for a while and if I felt better, I’d know it was a good choice”.
That was 6 months ago.
Many parents have issues with kids and food. I have to say that running a family and making sure they stay healthy is not easy, especially when your kids are babies and your heart aches with them whenever they are sick.
I added the connection between food and health to my bible after a huge pain of trying very hard to get rid of Eden’s pneumonia when she was just an 18-month-old baby. By the time she was 2 years old, Eden had been sick with pneumonia 3 times already and had been constantly on antibiotics and inhalers. Before those scary 6 months, I had never thought about what I ate and had just gone to the supermarket and bought the same things my parents and Gal’s parents had.
One of my friends, who was trying to help me, told me Eden should eat certain things and avoid eating others to improve her health. I thought she was not normal (which was true, but in a good sense) and that food had nothing to do with germs and health problems. It was only later, when we discovered Eden was sensitive to dairy food, that I realized just how tight the relationship between food and health was.
Food, and only food, was the difference between having a very sick girl (with pneumonia that 6 months of antibiotics could not fix) and having a healthy girl that went to see the doctor only once in the following 20 years. Food, and only food, was the difference between being anemic and having a healthy iron level. During my second, third, fourth and fifth pregnancies, while every other woman had to take iron tablets, my iron level was strong and stable, even the doctor was shocked. Food, and only food, was the difference between Gal having sinus surgery to unblock his nose and not needing that surgery until today.
Modern times have put us in charge of our health and wellbeing and as parents, of the health and wellbeing of our kids. Gone are the days of the good old doctor who knew everybody by name and actually cared about them. House calls are certainly a thing of the past.
- We must take responsibility for our own health, because nobody else will do it
- We must take responsibility for our children’s health, because it is part of the “job description” and they are important to us
- We understand that being healthy is a prerequisite to doing well at school and at work, to staying alive longer and to enjoying life
- We live a lifestyle that is faster than ever and far more stressful, which is bad for our health
- We eat food made to taste good, not to be nutritious, which means that most of us do not get what we need out of it
- We need to prevent physical and mental issues and keep ourselves balanced, rather than treat symptoms
- We already use chemicals to overcome our challenges and we are typically aware of their effects (good and bad) on our body and mind
So why not use food supplements?
We are not experts, but we have found value in some food supplements, despite having to overcome the feeling we are self-medicating. We have tried superfoods and spices, as well as pills and capsules. We have tried “natural” products and “artificial” ones, and we have not found the complete answer yet.
Maybe if we parents get together and discover the best ways to supplement our life and the life of our kids, we will all be healthier, happier and more successful.