Back in the days, before GPS and maps and routes, sailors had to navigate by the North Star--one true point in the sky that showed them where they were, where they were headed, and how to get there.
We need that with a raw and living foods diet. Have you defined what your North Star is for you? If you are vague, and say, "I want to eat more raw. I want to exercise more." you'll get VAGUE results. When you are confronted by a food, how will you know if it is on your plan, if you don't HAVE a plan? We need to have a crystal clear vision of where we are, where we want to go, and what we WILL and WILL NOT do to get there. Make sense?
So what is your North Star? This can be a defining statement. When I was on a juice feast, this was easy: "I drink fresh veggie juice. I don't have anything that is NOT fresh veggie juice." When I got off the juice feast, I wanted to stay 100% raw vegan. This was also easy. "I am a raw vegan. If it ain't raw, and it ain't vegan, it ain't going anywhere near my mouth!"
Now, I am going back to high raw, and, I have resolved to keep my diet very simple and basic (no gourmet for me on this Initiative. I find it messes me up during this weight-release portion of my life. I think it's awesome for people who can handle it.) So my North Star is more complicated, but I MUST define it. That definition is what makes raw EASY--the decision making is easy because the criteria has been set. Foods are either an easy "Yes, please!" or "No way." There is no fooling oneself with a "just this once..." or "I'll have a little bit..." Just-this-once and I'll-have-a-little-bit are not my friends! They mess me up, big time.
So here's what MY North Star looks like (because this is a very individual thing!):
My Personal Statement of Commitment: I am a HIGH RAW simple vegan. That means that my diet is all vegan, that it is 90% fruits and vegetables, with no more than a handful of nuts or seeds a day, and no more than 1 avocado daily. My focus will be simple raw fruits, raw veggies in simple salads or with all raw dips, green smoothies, green blended soups, and green juices. I will eat cooked beans and legumes (my personal decision) but no more than 1/2 c. per day.
My WON'T EAT List: (for this iVault4 experience):
1. Sugars (except fruit)
2. Bread, pasta, or wheat of any kind
4. Dairy Products
6. Dehydrated things (just for this initiative, going light and simple this time)
7. Gourmet raw (only exceptions: Sunday Supper because I feel it is "safe": I only get one serving and it is not in my house where it can get me in trouble. Plus the fellowship with other raw food Christians is very valuable to me. Other exception: Thanksgiving day, I will make myself a "fancy" meal to celebrate. It will be ONE SERVING of each item, and a ONE MEAL experience. No leftovers!)
8. Any COOKED food, except: 1/2 c./day beans/legumes
My Loving Limits: (rules I make for myself that assist me in overcoming compulsive eating impulses)
1. No skipping meals.
2. "One and you're done" (have one plate of normal sized servings of food, and no more. No "seconds")
3. If it's not on my plan, it's not in my house. My home is a SAFE ZONE.
4. The kitchen is CLOSED after 7pm--don't go in there!
5. After a meal, wait at least 3 hrs before eating again. (Prevents "grazing" and overeating)
6. Exercise is not optional! (5 out of 7 days, minimum)
7. No parties that are just "eating orgies", buffets or all-you-can-eat ANYTHING. If you don't want to slip, stay off the ice! Don't put yourself in a situation that you KNOW will be too tempting for you!
8. Remember the acronym HALTS to halt compulsive behavior. Your resolve will be weaker when you are too: Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired, Sad, (or Stressed.) Be on guard at these times and work out your emotions without turning to compulsive behavior.
Other Stars to Guide Me:
1. I will PLAN MEALS. I will make sure I have everything I need for the next day.
2. I will PLUG INTO SUPPORT. I will check into the 'Hab every day! I will support others!
3. I will JOURNAL daily. (So important for me.)
4. I will make sure the kitchen is "ready to rawk" daily: unload the dishwasher every morning, and make sure the kitchen is cleaned well every night.
5. I will take extra good Loving Care of my body: daily supplements, hot/cold/hot/cold showers, dry skin brushing, brushing/flossing daily (I've been bad at remembering to floss!) etc.
6. I will refresh my Spirit daily: I will pray morning and evening, read the Word before bed, and have my "walking devotion/praise music" time at lunch.
7. I will TAKE TIME just for me, doing things that make me HAPPY: Funny movies, good books, crafts, and hanging out with friends...
OK, it is YOUR TURN! (You knew that was coming, right?!) DO YOU have a North Star: a clear vision of where you are, where you want to go, and a crystal clear road map of exactly what you WILL DO and WON'T DO to get there? If you don't have a map, it is going to be so much harder to get there, if you make it at all.
Are you serious about your life, your health and your dreams? Or do you just talk a good game?
TAKE ACTION. DO IT NOW. (I just did. :) I double dog dare you!!!