Slow & Steady Wins the Race

My initial thoughts before beginning this website was that every post must contribute toward the overall mission and vision of The Carpenter & the Cook. If I kept with that line of thinking I would never post. The hardest part for me on any new project is just getting started – I know you can relate. That same line of thinking translates into the many reasons that we don’t change our habits for the better and start the path to a new and healthier way of life. So often we know the foods that we should and should not be eating, the activity that we should be incorporating into our life, the 7-8 hours of sleep that we really need to be getting and that we should be taking most everything in life with a grain of salt to reduce our stress. But do we always do the things we know we should be doing, at least some of the time? It only takes a first step and one small change for the better to give us the confidence we need to take the next step. So here is some food for thought for making those healthy changes that you have only dared think about……

#1 What is one thing you can do this week to improve your health? When I ask the question what is the first thing that came to your mind? Write it down and start there.
When I asked the Carpenter he said “drink more water”.
#2 Make it doable and specific.
So I think it’s doable for the Carpenter to drink more water but how to measure “more”? Make it specific. Keep his Nalgene water handy and fill it up 4x during the day and set a deadline for when he will evaluate his progress – try it one week at a time.
#3 Tell someone your goal and ask for accountability. I will be asking the Carpenter each day for the next week how his water intake has been. On days that he doesn’t drink more water, we will get to the reason as to why he didn’t accomplish his goal. Perhaps he forgot his Nalgene or he just didn’t think about. Choose someone that will remember to ask you about your goal and help you understand and overcome your barriers.
#4 Get right back on that horse again. If you do a lousy job 1 day, 2 days or maybe 5 days in a row just keep on trying. Maybe you need to look at the goal you set, if you just can’t seem to master it perhaps start with something that you can master and boost your confidence before attempting the greater challenges.
#5 Allow room for organic goals. I used to be dead set on accomplishing the goals I set for myself- no matter what. As I mature, or at least that’s what I think it is, I am allowing my goals to grow organically. So often I will set a goal only to find out along the way that something else is more important (life happens) and need to modify my goals. Don’t let this be an excuse to not accomplish your goals or work towards them but allow yourself to re-prioritize.
#6 Master one and then add another. Don’t try to change everything at once, small changes added up over time yield big results. I see people too often that decide to become a vegetarian, exercise everyday, only eat organic – all at once when their current lifestyle is the opposite of what they are aiming for. Incorporate one change, learn it, become a master of it and then try something new.

Speaking of organic goals, I sat down to write about healthy eating tips for packing food on the road as I just returned from vacation. It just wasn’t in me tonight but soon, very soon I will show you my healthy loot for my trip to Illinois and what Chicago O’Hare aiport has to offer. Believe it or not, I would rate it as one of the best airports to find healthy food options. More to come.

– the Cook