“Progress isn’t made by early risers.
It’s made by lazy men trying to find easier ways to do something.”
-Robert A. Heinlein
Last week I talked about eating your more metaphorical chick peas. The point was that if you add more good to what you are doing, less room is left for that which is bad or unhealthy. The concept was borrowed from How Not To Die by Michael Greger, M.D.
This advice might have left you with the impression that you have to pick your poison—either delicious food with ill-health or a lifetime of flavorless rabbit food. These are false alternatives. Gregor explained that, while he preferred that his patients eliminate bad food, he was wise enough to recognize that simply reducing bad food was a healthy step the right direction. In short, good nutrition is not an either/or, but a continuum. The same holds true for taste. Few of us want to give up delicious deserts, but we feel that we have to in order to eat right. Yet, taste and health are not necessarily enemies. Gregor won my admiration with this passage:
The favored dessert in our home is soft-serve ‘ice-cream’ made by blending frozen fruit. You whip up frozen fruit in a blender, food processor, or juicer, and viola! Instant All-fruit ice cream…..My Favorite is chocolate. To make it, blend dark, sweet cherries, or strawberries mixed with a tablespoon of cocoa power, a splash of milk of your choice (more if you want to make a milkshake), a capful of vanilla extract, and some pitted dates. If you didn’t get your nuts for the day, you can add some almond butter. Either way, you get an instant, decadent, chocolate desert so nutritious that the more you eat, the healthier you are. Let me repeat that: The more you eat, the healthier you are. That’s my kind of ice cream![i]
I tried it. It is delicious. But that is not the point of the lesson. That last line grabbed me: “The more you eat it, the healthier you are.”
This passage was interesting because, as with last week’s lesson, the concept can be applied in ways that extend beyond diet. It is like turning lemons into lemonade, but a healthy version that makes you feel better.
- Are you overloaded at work? Take on more projects that will help you get where you want to go. Make yourself an expert in a particular area, and you will have more control over your future as you become more valuable to management.
- Are you a salesman who needs to develop a thick skin? Make more sales calls. That sounds like eating your chick-peas, but it is not if you make it a game and reward yourself not for the sales you make. All other things being equal, increased appointments should lead to increased sales. By making it a game, you have traded the chick-peas for all natural, delicious ice cream.
- Do you hate traffic? Listen to audiobooks that will build your skill-set. I have an Audible Account. You can get a free 30-day trial to Audible and two free downloadable audiobooks here. Don’t know what to listen to? Here are my top picks for books on management and leadership.
What About You?
“The more you eat, the healthier you are.” What is your equivalent of frozen-fruit, chocolate ice cream? Time spent identifying these alternatives will pay big dividends in your health and happiness.
[i] Gregor, M., & Stone, G. (2015). How not to die: Discover the foods scientifically proven to prevent and reverse disease. New York: Flatiron Books. (p. 292).