January 31, 2011

Two Pertinent P's

Planning and Prioritizing

I don't know how many times I have fallen victim to my own lack of planning. Not to mention the horrific repercussions of out-of-whack priorities. And I'm not just talking about the world of weight loss! These two P's can make or break you.

Here are some things that I can (and should) always do to plan and prepare for success:

1. Plan an entire week's worth of meals before that week begins.

2. Make a grocery list from those menus and stock the house with healthy foods for the week.

3. Consider upcoming restaurant visits, parties, etc. and write down what I plan to eat. (visit restaurant websites for menus/nutritional info. if applicable)

4. Line up childcare ahead of time when needed for exercise.

5. Wash, chop, divide all produce, etc. immediately when I get home for store.

6. Prepare several meals at once and freeze or refrigerate for later in week.

7. Keep healthy snacks in purse & always in the pantry, "just in case.
8. Make sure all "danger foods are locked up, out of sight, or gone from the house and workplace.

9. Set goals and lists steps to take toward reaching those goals.

10. PRAY!

Salad is my go-to meal for busy afternoon lunches or low-key dinners. Having all the components chopped and ready to go is so helpful! I make little bags of turkey, cheese, black beans, tomatoes, etc. and keep them all together in the fridge. When it's salad time all I have to do is fix my plate! If you have access to a fridge at work this would be a great way to do lunch everyday! No lunch-packing!

Always wash and portion out fruits and veggies before putting away in the fridge.

This week I made some homemade HV Ranch dressing with olive oil mayo and skim milk. It was great and it was nice to have on hand if I didn't have time to make a vinaigrette (which is healthier).

In addition, setting new priorities is important. I say "new " priorities because in order to change an old lifestyle, the priorities of your "old" lifestyle are most likely going to need to change, drastically. You know--"If you always do what you've always done you'll always get what you've always got!" kind of thing...

For example, one of the most important parts of my day has become my morning quiet time. It is a time for me to get focused on my priorities (what i need to accomplish) for that day, study God's Word, pray and just get mentally prepared for the challenges that are ahead. I play relaxing music, sip my coffee and find my happy place ;) I have gotten to the point that if I miss it in the morning, something just feels off and usually my day is not that great. It is a relatively new PRIORITY in my life. I have to take steps to make sure it happens every single day.

Making this a #1 priority has had an impact on other parts of my life (and even members of my family) in a great way. In order to have this time, I have to wake up at least an hour before anyone else in the house. In order for this to happen, I have to get to sleep at a decent hour. In order for this to happen I have to get the kids' in bed at an even MORE decent hour. I have to have my little quiet time area (in the bathroom, ha!) ready the night before. I find that coffee makes this time even more *special* so I try to have the coffee pot all ready to go the night before also. You can see the domino effect a shift in priorites can have. This is a good thing.

When I began to purposely prepare for this time, it became so much easier. Now it's a very doable way to make my day go smoothly. I just use this as an example to encourage you to take whatever steps are necessary to do the things that help you avoid temptations and keep you going in the right direction all day. I encourage you to think of what your priorities are and how they may need to change. Even though it may not seem natural, try to honor what you realize needs to change.

No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it. 1 Corinthians 10:13

I love this verse! God is so very faithful to provide a way out when we are faced with temptation. He has helped me out of sticky situations more times than I can count. However, I think it's important for us to remember that sometimes the "way out" is using the tools of planning and prioritizing to avoid temptation all together. We shouldn't always find ourselves knocking on temptation's door just because we think God will answer.

All the planning and prioritizing in the world won't amount to a hill of beans unless we follow-through. What are you doing to help set yourself up for success? Have your priorities changed? Do they need to?


Chubby McGee said...

Great priorities. What's funny is that once you've done it (and it's all over), you look back and think "wow...that wasn't that difficult to do." It's odd that way.

Also, I love that reduced fat Cabot cheese! So good!!! Such a treat!

Stacey said...

So true! I guess we each have a choice to make... to prioritize or not. In my experience there is a domino effect either way. You just have to ask yourself which side of it you want to be on.

I am so glad you put your go-to lunch. I was just wondering about people's go-to breakfasts and lunches.

Anonymous said...

Great point. My prayer last week was to find out why I did not have peace over the way I ate. I'm at a good weight and beside the normal fluctuation of a few pounds, I'm staying put. That little voice in my head said why are you bothered (your previous post). God gave me 1 Cor 10:12-13 for my answer. I realized I'm pretending I'm not a glutton. That since I successfully shed the unwanted, unhealthy pounds that I was no longer trapped by that sin. 1 Cor 10:12 "So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!" This is me. I pretended (and lied to myself) that I was standing, not relying on my God to stand. And guess what, I fell, many times. I also flirted with temptations and often didn't seek a way out. Of course that voice said it was OK since I'm not as bad as I used to be when I ate the whole package. I just knew if I didn't have peace, then it wasn't right.
Overeating (gluttony) is a sin for me and I need to stay away from it, as far as possible.

Courtney said...

You made some great points! :o)

2 years ago I lost 40 lbs and now I'm going back at it again to lose 20 more! I feel like the 40 lbs I lost were GREAT, but I think if I can lose 20 more, then I'll feel even better about myself!

Gina said...

I also cherish my morning time with Him. I've been trying to switch to tea rather than coffee, so that coffee is consumed in less amounts, but also so that I can look forward to that first thing at work. It's made a huge difference for me (I've been doing it about a year) & also feel "off" if my day doesn't start this way.

Adrienne said...

That would definitely help me to be more successful! My pastor always says, "Fail to plan, you plan to fail." So true! Loved this post.

Bunny said...

Way to go! I am loving the positivity in this post!

As the good book says, keep putting on 'the new personality' and leaving that old one behind. You are looking really great and I love your photos of foods! MMMMM


x bunny x