It’s Here! (In the Moment – Mindful Eating App for Android Devices)

 

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Attention Android Users!  The app is now available for your mobile devices.  For  a limited time, you can download the app without a fee. Visit the Facebook page for the link and download instructions.

Turning Hindsight Into Foresight

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“If only I hadn’t climbed up on that @#$%^&* chair!”

We’ve all heard the expression “Hindsight is 20/20.”  But what does that kind of expert vision accomplish if it just manifests as regret.  Absolutely NO good!  In order to be valuable, hindsight has to give us a little foresight.  In other words, it must be combined with learning to have any benefit in the future.

My husband Peter and I had this discussion recently after a very regrettable incident, and yes, if he could have predicted it, he would have done things differently.  But one thing is for darn sure . . . he will never, EVER again stand on a chair without being very mindful.  Actually he may never again stand on a chair at all!

Here’s what happened.  Peter woke me up one morning last week with the urgent news that there was a bat in our house – a bat now trapped under a bowl on our bookcase after he cornered it – and I needed to get up to help him get the bat out of the house.

So there I was, cookie sheet in hand, while he slid the bowl ever so carefully off the shelf onto it.  Everything was going perfectly . . . until Peter lost his balance and fell off the chair.  The bat was captured successfully, but Peter landed badly and his knee was not looking “right.”  Actually it was looking very, very wrong, with a huge bulge protruding away from his leg.

This long story ended with a trip to the Emergency Room and surgery to repair a torn quadriceps tendon a day later.  He will now be on crutches for 6 weeks.  What a set-up for a case of the “woulda, coulda, shoulda’s”!  But it doesn’t help his current situation to realize that he was focusing too much on the bat and too little on his balance.

Experience is a great teacher though.  This recent setback has started me thinking that learning from the “slips” of eating habits – the equivalent of falling off the chair (or the wagon!) – presents a similar opportunity.  Unfortunately it is all too common for people to get stuck in the regret of their disappointments, looking back with hindsight (that crystal clear perspective) to see that “I shouldn’t have eaten so many cookies,” instead of understanding what caused it to happen and looking for solutions . . . changing the hindsight to foresight.

We can predict that destructive eating patterns will happen again if all we do is display perfect hindsight.  That’s easy!  In order to turn it into something productive, we need to give up on the regret and “if only’s” so we can actually learn something useful.

If having an abundance of cookies in the house causes a cookie binge, there is a difference between saying, “I shouldn’t have eaten all of those!  I have no willpower,” and observing that “having all those temptations in the house is not very supportive of my goals.  I will practice self-compassion by not buying them.”  (awareness + insight = learning)

The first method is judgmental and negative.  It does not get beyond the regret and shame of “messing up.”  The second is supportive and useful.   This may sound like picky semantics, but it makes a big difference!  Are you learning or just finding fault with yourself?

What’s for lunch? (or a quick snack?) I have no time (to cook or shop)!

One of the biggest problems with eating healthy is lack of planning.  I’m not talking about the kind of planning some people do:  make a list for a week of meals, go to the store and buy the ingredients, cook all afternoon on Sunday to prepare for the week, freeze some . . . .

No, no, no!  That is definitely not what I mean by planning.  Most people will not do that.  They don’t have time, or quite frankly, there are other things they wish to do with their precious spare time.

When I talk about planning, I mean the basics.  Just be prepared for those times when you are starving, creativity is limited, and there are very few options in the refrigerator and/or pantry.  That means you must go to the store sometime!  That also means you must keep a few staples on hand and have a few ideas for quick meals that can be made with these basics.

Some items I keep on hand for times like this, mostly non-perishables or foods that last a while before going bad:

canned salmon (I like the red, not the pink)

plain fat-free or 2% Greek yogurt

onions

celery

canned beans

whole grain tortillas

avocado

hummus

eggs

edamame

cottage cheese

Today was one of those days for me.   I was so glad I had at least attended to this level of planning.  I came home hungry and needed a hearty snack.  It was so nice to be able to open a can of salmon, add a chopped cucumber (from our little garden), a little onion and avocado, some plain Greek yogurt and a dash of seasoning to create this beautiful and satisfying mini-meal.  Now I think I will make it until dinner!

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A Sneak Peek at a New App Addition!

A new version of “In the Moment – Mindful Eating” will be added soon.  Included will be a new “bubble” giving users an opportunity to choose to “just stop” – in the spirit of self-compassion of course!  This video, which is totally adorable, will be included.  Can’t we all laugh at this and see a little of ourselves in it?  Can anyone honestly say they have never been in Frog and Toad’s shoes before?

 

 

Media Coverage for “In the Moment – Mindful Eating” App

The Milwaukee Business Journal published a story about my phone app yesterday in their online edition.

More exciting app news:  the Android version is almost finished and will be available at Google Play soon!

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Help Me Stop!!

Do you find yourself saying – screaming?! – these words (silently, or maybe not so silently) to yourself?  Want to change a habit?  I do.

Most of the habits I hear about people wanting to change are related to eating.  “I need to (want to, have to, DEFINITELY should, etc.) stop . . . . (eating after dinner, eating while watching TV, eating cookies, eating chocolate, . . . . )  Sound familiar?  Although I am not currently having trouble with food cravings, there have definitely been times in my life when I have, and I understand it.

My problem?  I have been having trouble shutting off my brain at night when it’s time to go to sleep.  I know at least part of the problem is the stimulation of tech devices (computer and phone).  I sit down to dinner, hear that little “ping” from my phone and make a note to check e-mail after I eat.  I start reading a book and think, “I should really send just one more e-mail to . . . ”  The list of distractions and “could do” list just gets longer.

So . . . I have decided to shut off my phone and cover my computer after 6pm.  So far it’s working.  I did go to the computer once or twice (“I’ll just check the weather”), forgetting my promise to myself, but the fleece jacket over my computer stopped me in my tracks – an effective reminder!

I recommend similar reminders for eating triggers.  A fleece jacket (or a sticky note) on the TV would remind TV munchers to consider their choices instead of mindlessly grabbing the bag of chips.  Whatever works to get a new habit going!  It does take some time to form new ones.  When starting the process, an obvious reminder of the commitment helps, simply because the brain is not yet considering options to the usual mindless routine.  That’s what makes habits hard to break – they are mindless.

If you have creative reminders of your own, please share them.  I would love to hear what works for you!

How My Computer Looks After 6pm

How My Computer Looks After 6pm

Looking for a tasty, quick breakfast?

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What to eat. . . what to eat . . . hmmm . . . .

Yes, I ask this question too!

This morning I needed to get going quickly but I also needed a decent breakfast that would last me about 4 hours.  I came up with this beautiful and delicious combo full of protein, healthy fat, and vegetables.

I boiled a couple of eggs for 7 minutes (nice and gooey inside!) and settled them on a nest of leftover roasted vegetables – another reason to keep some roasted veggies on hand.  Mine included red peppers, purple onion, carrots, eggplant, mushrooms, and cauliflower.

A little salt and pepper on top, and this really did the trick:  satisfied my hunger and got some vegetables in the tank early in the day.  If I had been heading for a tough workout, I may have added a piece of fruit for extra fuel, but this was fine for today.

If you’ve never roasted vegetables, I assure you that you can do it!  Anyone can do it.

Kim’s Roasted Vegetables

Put roughly chopped vegetables into a roasting pan and drizzle with olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook in a 400 degree oven for about ½ hour (time depends on the type of vegetables used). Toss once or twice during the cooking time. Here are some of my favorite combos:

Eggplant chunks, purple onion, carrots, zucchini, and mushrooms – sometimes I drizzle a little aged balsamic vinegar at the end.

Parsnips, carrots, and purple onion – a nice winter medley

Brussels sprouts and . . . more Brussels sprouts – I love them all by themselves; they get a little crispy – mmm!