Who wants a summer vacation from cooking? Yehaw! That sounds amazing! Sign me up!
No, seriously! There has got to be a way to simplify the kitchen this summer so that we can all have a little bit of a break, right?
OK, you got me–I have a solution. That’s why I’m writing this post. 😉
I know what stress does….
First, a little background. If you’ve been here for very long, you know that my passion for cooking healthy foods for my family and this blog came from a season of scary health issues in my life. I was 23 years old when I was told I had the liver of an alcoholic. My skin, my cycles, and my digestion were all wonky, and my doctor was very concerned. She saw that my body was super stressed, and was not sure what the cause was.
She started me with diet changes first, hoping that we could avoid more drastic measures and–what do you know?!
Changing what I ate changed my life.
Now, you’ve probably heard a similar line, but thought (like I once did) that it takes DRASTIC diet changes to see awesome results. But the reality is, it was actually just a few small tweaks that set me on the path of healing. I’ll tell you about those tweaks in a minute, but first, I need to make this point:
It was little things, over time, that got you where you are with your health. And it can be little things, over time, that can get you back to where you want to be.
The first change I made was to up my probiotics and digestive enzymes. First I did that with pills, then I gradually learned to do it with foods I made myself like kombucha, sauerkraut, and kefir.
Second, I reduced foods that my body found difficult to digest at the time (for me it was sugar and wheat flour).
These two small changes did not overwhelm me, nor add more stress to my life (which was a good thing because I was planning a wedding and getting married in 3 months!) and the best part? I was able to sustain them through the busy year ahead, becoming a wife and a mom–and actually, it’s been 12 years that I have continued to do those two things!
And that’s where we come to my nugget that’s gonna de-stress you summer and help you continue to make progress on your health even when life gets busy.
Un-Stress your Summer
If you’re reading this kind of blog, chances are you have a list as long as your arm of things you want to buy, make, ferment, bake, stew, or slurp for the betterment of your gut and your over all health. And I applaud you for choosing to take your wellness in your own hands and doing the work to improve your health.
But what I don’t want you to do is tell yourself you’re gonna tackle that whole list on Summer break.
I’m gonna challenge you to choose ONE thing. One thing that you KNOW would impact your health, and then do that ONE thing until it’s as brainless and routine as brushing your teeth.
Then and only then, should you move to the next thing.
- Maybe that ONE thing is just remembering to take that supplement you know you need to be taking every day.
- Maybe that ONE thing is making and using bone broth in your diet daily.
- Maybe that ONE thing is learning to make kombucha and ditching sodas.
Whatever it is, choose that thing, write it big on a sheet of paper, and put it on your fridge.
Then, when you’re tempted to get overwhelmed about all. the. things.–remind yourself that you are mastering that ONE thing, and you’re not allowed to stress or obsess about anything else till you get this down.
The Secret to Lasting Change
Here’s the truth–small changes over time are more sustainable and likely to stick than HUGE changes that burn you out in 3 days (I’m looking at you, drastic-diet-of-limited-foods-you-can-barely-stick-to-for-a-month!).
Do it for yourself. Do it for your kids. Do it for the summer.
Choose one thing to master, and don’t move on till you get that one down.
What’s your one thing?
P.S. if your one thing cooking more dinners from scratch this summer, check out my book, Real Fast Food for our family’s simplest, healthiest favorites!