As I said before I’ve already started this informally. I don’t allow any “unclean” food into my kitchen and I do a pantry check every day to make sure I have enough clean staples in my fridge so that I can make a few snacks and meals. In case anyone is curious they are:
-”picas” - chorizo, deli meat, olives, maybe cheese
Yesterday Lydia and I were completed depleted - her because of a particularly heavy work schedule, me because of bad sleep and an intense HIIT. We were both completely giving each other permission to cheat - “let’s just order some pizza” and comments like that. We were suffering from “decision fatigue” and trying to decide was just becoming painful. Usually that means we’re ordering in - and not anything clean.
What happened was nothing short of miraculous - we made Om Nom Paleo’s “Garbage Stir-fry” (which I know sounds horrible, but is really good, filling, and easy to make when you’re in a pinch).
I’m not joking about the “miracle” part of that last sentence. I was ego-depleted, which, according to all of Baumeister’s experiments, results in lack of self-control. Together things get worse. I wrote about the problem of “Syncing with Significant Others” which I feel causes something similar to habit dissonance, drastically magnifying problems in the decision making process. Furthermore, there was no habit in place, no implementation intention, no gamification or quantification of self going on.
But that counterintuitively small habit of doing pantry checks meant we had the ingredients. And we had this general feeling of knowing that we shouldn’t cheat. It almost made it so that it was easier to just eat clean. I have to analyze this more, but the salient point for this post is that pantry checking has already paid off.
So I made a list of small habits that pull from the pool of Identity-centric formations I posted in my recent post, “Towards an Identity Model of Habits: Part III”:
-Recording everything that goes into my mouth
-Not bringing cheat items into the house for cooking
-daily pantry check
-ritual of the same meal or snack once a day
-tea ritual with recording food for the day
-grocery store trip
-Some kind of paleo primal certification
-joining a clean eating club in my city
-joining a virtual version of the above and taking part in the community
-weekly meal planning session
-daily meal planning
-after x number of drinks we auto ask for check
- or order a water between every drink
-flash challenges - bread flash challenge
-no drink flash challenge
-recording what you spend on food
-going out protocol
That’s just a rough list…I think since these are small I can do two at one time and be safe.