The Skinny – Amy Brunell

you-are-importantIt’s a Matter of Time-Challenging Priorities —

Whether you need to lose weight or not, deciding to live a healthy life takes an investment of time. No one who wants to maintain a balanced life, gets away with winging it. From shopping, planning, exercise and sleeping, we have 24 hours and we have to invest time each day to be healthy.

Being healthy, means plotting a certain non-negotiable time for what is important. It is sometimes low on the priority field when life is throwing you to the ground. It seems almost selfish at times to spend time on yourself when people around you are suffering. But it’s really the opposite. When you don’t care for yourself, you are more likely to fall apart for those people who need you. I know I can write it, but until you make that switch in your brain that being your best is imperative, it won’t matter what you read. And notice I didn’t write “doing your best.” That just becomes another thing “to do.” “Okay, stay healthy, check!” and who needs that? But “being” your best…What does that mean?

Being your best is not about doing everything for others because some weird message you got from your parents told you that doing for others instead of yourself was practically righteous.

Being your best is not about getting more done. It’s not about getting less sleep, saying yes to more or always being that “girl/guy” who helps. Being your best is about being mindful in each moment, “What is it that serves the most good?” The fact is that if you decided what was best was to get a nap, you might be better attendant to a child with homework later that day.

Being too tired to shop and prep healthy food isn’t being your best self. If you aren’t shopping, then does it mean that other demands have taken over? If having healthy food in your home was your number 1 priority-say I’m paying you $100 for that errand, then what would you change or move to have healthy food in your home? And if I told you I would pay you $100 each week you went shopping, I bet you would move priorities around to make sure that errand happened each week.

What if I upped the ante and said, “I’ll pay you $200 a week if you plan, shop and cook 5 dinners.” What if I added another $100 for walking 30 minutes a day? What would you do to make sure you had the time to accomplish these tasks?

Try stacking time in your favor:

Use weekends to make a grocery list, shop and prep fruits and vegetables for the week.

Eat similar foods and keep them clean and simple so there is less thinking involved. Yes less sexy, but really easier overall. Cooking multiple chicken breasts for the week assures that you have a quick and easy source of protein for salads, sandwiches and easy dinners.

Give yourself an actual limit for time stealers like computer games, Facebook and watching t.v. Don’t take those activities out of your life, just decide how much time you will give yourself. And be honest.

Play or walk dogs as part of your exercise. Meet a friend for a walk. Combine multiple needs to get the maximum out of your time.

Schedule sleep first and then work backwards with what is left.

So now what becomes a priority? How do we look at our life and decide that some time for us has to be the priority? How did we learn that everyone could get a piece of us, except us? How did we learn that everyone else wants/needs were more important?Regardless of what another is experiencing, it isn’t your job to martyr yourself. It isn’t your best to make or allow yourself to be overtired. It isn’t your best self to say yes to everything or take care of grown adults like they are children you care for.

This understanding is a way to truly improve your whole life and find some balance. When we find balance it’s a lot easier to make good choices around our food, sleep and social life.

There is a natural alignment to being a best self. Certain positive responses you are able to garner, because you have been your best self.


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