Welcome to Mission #37 of our 52 Get Organized Missions.
Whether our goal is weight loss, better health, or more energy, most of us would like to improve our diet and eating habits.
If you’ve completed the previous mission Get Organized Mission #36: Organize Your Paperwork then it’s a great time to switch focus to your health.
When upgrading your diet, a little time spent getting organized can turbo-charge your efforts and reduce your reliance on willpower. So let’s get organized now!
Remember: you only need 30 minutes for the basic mission. Extended Options are below.
If you’re new, you might like to start here -> 52 Organizing Missions.
Note: By ‘diet’ I mean the food you eat, not a restricted plan of culinary deprivation that makes you feel cranky and your friends’ heads look like giant balls of chocolate.
Get Organized Mission #37:
Organize Your Diet
Step 1: Choose Your Diet Goals (5 minutes)
First up, let’s organize 2 or 3 dietary goals as a starting point. Once you’ve got these working for you, you can add more. But don’t sabotage yourself by taking on too much too soon. Aim for progress, not perfection.
For instance, you might choose 1, 2 or 3 of these, or your own, diet goals:
- Eat less fatty food
- Eat less fried food
- Eat less dairy
- Switch to low-fat dairy
- Eat less fast food
- Eat less sodium
- Eat less sugar
- Eat less refined carbohydrate
- Eat more vegetables
- Eat more fish
- Eat more legumes
- Eat more fruit
- Eat more grains
- Eat more fiber
- Eat smaller portions
- Drink less alcohol
- Drink fewer sugary drinks
- Drink more water.
Step 2: Detox Your Space (10 minutes)
You knew this step was coming, right?
It’s time to clean up your food act and get rid of stuff that undermines the diet goals you just set. For instance, if your goal is to eat less fatty food, then you may decide to evict cookies, cakes, chips, etc, from:
- The pantry
- The fridge and freezer
- The car(s)
- Your office
- Your secret stash (did you think I didn’t know?).
If you really want something, you’re the boss of you, and you can always go get it.
But having it within arm’s reach is not a very organized way to approach your new diet goal.
Step 3: List Your Supplies (5 minutes)
Now let’s make a list of foods you need to buy.
Start with foods you’ll need in order to achieve your ‘eat more’ diet goals. For instance, if you want to eat more vegetables, add vegetables to your list.
HINT: Choose things you like – it’ll be easier to begin well and kick-start your motivation. Don’t buy spinach if you’d rather eat crushed glass. Choose asparagus, mushrooms, snap peas, whatever.
Next, add foods to replace any ‘eat less’ foods you just banished from your kitchen. See if you can choose something similar, so that you’re still scratching the same itch.
For instance, try:
- Frozen yoghurt to replace after-dinner ice cream
- Rice crackers/air-popped corn to replace chips while you watch TV
- Flavored mineral water in a martini glass to replace your mid-morning cocktail.
When you next go shopping, be sure to stock up on these supplies.
Step 4: Set Up Your Monitoring System (10 minutes)
Finally, let’s consider how you’ll monitor your diet-goal progress.
For instance, you could:
- Keep a food diary – on paper, online, using an iPhone app – whatever appeals
- Make a chart for the fridge door
- Do a nightly check-in with your diet buddy
- Leave a daily or weekly comment on this post to let me know how you’re doing.
Choose your system now – and commit to it!
By completing these 4 steps, you’ve organized yourself well to make real, sustainable changes to your diet – bringing you weight loss, health, energy or whatever other benefits you want.
Dos & Don’ts
- Do aim for changes you can stick with. Save yourself the stress of extreme change.
- Don’t deprive yourself of foods you really love. Look for foods you can live without. Start there.
- Don’t worry about slip ups. Every single human being makes them. Start every day afresh.
Extended Organizing Mission Options
Want to go beyond this 30-minute organizing mission?
- Include the family. Choose individual goals, then do steps 2, 3 and 4 together. Clean out the house as a family, create a shopping list for everyone’s goals, and decide on a family monitoring system.
- If you have more time available, head out to the store and get those supplies now. Being prepared will be a nice boost to your motivation.
Ready, Set, Go!
Remember – move quickly, act fast, don’t overthink.
Before You Go: Check In!
Please add a comment to say you’ve completed this week’s Get Organized Mission and you’re keeping your commitment.
And see you back here next week!
Did You Know
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