I’ve come to the realization that I am happiest when I choose to spend my time on the few things that are most important to me. That may sound obvious, but what I’ve realized is that there are more things that are important to me than there are hours in each day, so I have to take time to identify what is the most important and purposely focus my energy there. I have to be willing to let go of some of the things that are important to me knowing that I just cannot do everything. And that when I try to do everything, the joy in even the things that are important to me diminishes according to my level of busyness, stress, and frantic energy.
When I try to do everything, I end up pushing my body to the extreme, being grumpier than normal, rushing through conversations with people I love, neglecting daily self-care, and ending up drained, exhausted, and even resentful. I end up, in a way, missing out on all the things that are important to me because I haven’t honestly assessed what I want the most and the time constraints of being human;-).
It’s kind of the same with food. We have to learn to identify what we really want to eat the most (and give ourselves permission to take time with these foods) because we can’t eat everything all at the same time. If I can’t decide what to eat and cook two entrees, I end up less satisfied than if I choose just the one that I most authentically want. Not the one that other people want, not the one that is “healthier”, not the one that is more affordable, not the one that would be better leftovers in tomorrow’s lunch; but the one that I really and truly want.
As we learn to identify and listen to what we really want with food it becomes easier to identify and listen to what we really want in each moment of each day; and visa versa, as we become more clear about what is most important in our life, we also become more clear and what foods we really want to eat and enjoy .
Here is a Journal Prompt to try! Take a moment at the beginning or the end of the day. Cozy up with a blanket and cup of tea and maybe an essential oil difusing. Consider everything you have planned for the day or completed during the day. Make a list in your journal. Next reflect on each activity you have listed on your to do list. Notice the thoughts you have about the activity, but even more importantly notice the sensations in your body as you think about the activitiy. Is there tension or relaxation? For example, when I think about walking in the woods my body relaxes but when I think about going to a busy store I feel physically tense.
Repeat this journal prompt on a regular basis without judgement of what you observe and it can provide tremendous insight into the most important activities in your life.