I have found, after talking to hundreds of people about nutrition, that good nutrition is very much a value issue. After all, if you value something, you make time for it, invest in it, and take great care with it. When it comes to nutrition, I often hear people say, “I’m too busy.” However, it is really a matter of value and priorities, isn’t it? Stay with me here…people work because they need to make money to live. So even if there were 25 loads of dirty laundry to do, a sink full of dirty dishes, house repairs to do, children’s activities etc. they would still go to work. If you found a lump in your breast, would you miss your scheduled doctors appointment? No, probably not. Why, because it becomes a priority. Work is a priority, family is a priority, there are lots of priorities! Well, I propose to you that your diet and nutrition should be a priority too. Why should the food that actually nourishes and fuels your body be put at the end of the priority list? It’s not that you don’t have time, it’s really that you don’t make time.
Everyone in this day and age is busy, lets face it, we are all stressed and pressed for time but are we willing to sacrifice our health for a convenient diet instead of a nourishing one? Have you ever noticed that the most successful people you know are also the busiest? These people are masters at prioritizing and organizing. They are able to draw solid yellow lines (no passing zones) around the segments of their lives. This allows them to accomplish their objectives and does not compromise their priorities. I heard someone say once that if you want something done and done right, give it to a busy person. Not just any busy person though- give it to a busy, successful person! We can all find time for the things that are important to us. It is just a matter of defining what those things are.
So, back to nutrition…If you decide to make it a priority, guess what, it will be! If you know you will be at work until 7PM every night next week, plan accordingly. Break out the crockpot and throw ingredients in before you leave, make 5 meals on Sunday, make some no-cook meals, etc. You get the idea. It can be done. If you know you are going to have the kids on the road all day, pack a lunch, pack snacks, see if there is a Whole Foods on your route, etc. If it is a priority, it will happen. However, without a plan failure is guaranteed. You are then forced to pull out that handy excuse of “I just don’t have time.”
You don’t have to spend hours on end preparing and planning meals. You can cook a full course dinner in under 30 minutes, easily! I look at it like this…by the time you decide where to go out to eat, get in the car, drive there, wait to be served, eat, wait for the bill, and drive home you could have cooked at home, eaten, relaxed, had the kitchen clean, and ensured a nourishing meal.
Please realize that “too busy” is just an excuse and excuses can be very destructive. They have the ability to corrupt our minds, to talk us into believing things that aren’t true, to justify our bad behaviors, and to keep us stuck in the same ruts. Isn’t it time to break down our excuses? We need to ask ourselves, “what are we busy doing?”
Whatever you do, don’t let excuses prevent you from eating a healthy diet, your body deserves the fuel it desires. After all, if you abuse it, you will lose it in some way or another. Will all of the long hours at work, soccer practices, watching your favorite tv show, patronizing restaurants, etc. be worth it if you lose your health? Time is not the enemy; it is how you manage your time that is the enemy. By the way, buying an organizer/planner that you can plug tasks into is not the answer. It is the bigger picture that you must start with. Decide what your priorities are (nutrition should be one of them) and no one or nothing should be able to derail your commitment to that. It should be right up there with quality family time, exercise, spiritual time, work, etc. You can do it!