Monday, April 9, 2012
Ever heard anyone say something like; “I’m ethical and honest when I do my taxes, but once in awhile I cheat and overstate my charitable giving so that I can get more of what I deserve on my refund.” “I’m very committed to staying faithful to my spouse, but periodically I sleep with someone else just so I don’t feel deprived.” No? You have not often heard anyone come right out and say that? Hmm. Well, I’ll bet you have heard someone say something along the lines of, “I’m on a diet that really seems to be working for me, but on the weekends I cheat and have pizza so that I can stay satisfied.” Or maybe, “Oh I eat really healthy, but when I go out to lunch with my coworkers I cheat and eat wings or meatball subs to feel like part of the group.”
Hey guess what? I don’t think anyone can live that way forever – cheating, AND being ethical, faithful, and/or healthy. With money and marriage, you’re honest and faithful or you’re not – there’s no middle ground, no living on exceptions. Particularly marriage – if you think you can go into with the idea in my mind that you’ll cheat now and then, should you even wed in the first place? Duh – no. Now, I’m never going to give financial advise (other than ‘hey dimwit, don’t whip out your credit card and get stuff you can’t afford’), and I’m not big on giving marriage advice (though I often want to say, ‘hey dirt bag, keep it in your pants when you’re out and about or your wife deserves to meet you at the door with a cleaver.’) BUT this is my little corner of the internet where I feel like I can spout off at will about food.
To expand a bit – no, I do not think that it’s realistic for me or anyone else to go for the rest of their lives without eating all the foods they really love. So….do I mean I do condone cheating after all? No! Instead, I would advocate for a change of mindset. That requires two things that I can think of right off the top of my head (hopefully you’re not disappointed to learn that I didn’t really think this out before I started typing); 1) Learn to enjoy healthy food. If you keep eating it, you’ll get used to it and not in the way you can get used to losing an arm either, you can get used to a different set of flavors and truly appreciate God’s creativity in nuance in the plants you’ll eat. It'll BE the food you really love. Once it’s your norm, food loaded with crap just won’t be as big a temptation; 2) if you are skipping, for example, cheese, and you really really love it, don’t just mindlessly fall into temptation, cheat, and eat it! PLAN to eat it in a controlled situation. If you have your weight and cholesterol and such in check and you want to have a some cheese pizza on your birthday every year then I think that’s just super. If you have a fixed time when you know you will have it, you can more easily skip it in the meantime. Of course, chances are, by the time you get to your birthday you may have found something that you like just as much or more and have that instead. Personally, I think my choice might be a Panini with grilled veggies and hummus with a side of avocado piled high with pico de gallo. Decadent! Hummus and avocado in the same meal! Oh the humanity….
Okay, I better get to bed since I have a hugely exciting day tomorrow – my Tuesday weigh in AND a cholesterol check! Woo-HOO!!