Holiday food should be pretty. So this dish rocks.
Especially if you’ve discovered that you have to cut out a ton of foods to get or stay healthy.
We just discovered that our family has to avoid gluten + eggs + soy (me and the boy), whey from milk (me), and corn (the kid).
So, yeah. That’s a lot of ingredients we’ll be avoiding!
BUT, I always loved a good challenge, especially in the kitchen.
AND, one way to ensure optimism + resilience is to look at the cupboard as half full, and expect the best, rather than getting depressed + overwhelmed by saying goodbye to certain ingredients.
I’m putting on my big girl panties, looking on the bright side, and putting all my energy into making delicious, nourishing foods that everyone can enjoy at the table.
One of the first places to start is with super easy, super tasty, no-fail recipes:
Ok, so most hummus is already gluten-dairy-soy-corn-free, but when I saw a picture of this gorgeous dip, I couldn’t resist making it in hopes of livening up the impending Christmas table.
Ruby Red Beet Hummus
- 1 medium beet (1 cooked a whole bunch at once to have for later)
- 15-ounce BPA-FREE can (1 3/4 cup) of garbanzao beans, drained
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 tiny pinch cayenne
- 1 dash paprika
- 2tablespoons lemon juice
- Sea salt and pepper, to taste
How to make the best hummus ever:
First, roast the beets: Preheat oven to 400F. Clean, scrub, and cut off the stems and root end. Loosely wrap individually in foil, place on a roasting pan. Roast for 50-60 min. They’re ready when a knife can be easily inserted.
(might as well wrap a head of garlic and roast that, too – I mean, who can ever get enough roasted garlic?)
While you’re waiting, take a nap or watch Gilmore Girls on Netflix.
When the beets are done, slip the outer peel off. Your hands will get red, but you’ll look pretty bad a$$.
Combine all ingredients into a food processor. Add water or additional olive oil until desired consistency. You want this to be creamy + smooth.
Add salt and pepper, about 1/2 teaspoon at a time.
Serve with gluten-free crackers, yo! Or just eat it with a spoon, like I did.
This is a great cooling recipe for Firebrand cravings types if you add a 1/2 teaspoon of cumin, a traditional hummus ingredient (AKA Pitta in Ayurveda). The cooked beet is good for Featherweight cravings types, and this recipe is great for Earth Mamas, but go light on the added drizzle of olive oil.
Don’t know your Cravings Type? Take my quiz and get your free Cravings Type Report here:
Happy Holidays, all! Eat to be happy + healthy…xo, Alex
Willing to take the risks…
And being kind to ourselves when we’re less than perfect.
That’s what “growth mindset” is all about.
Telling yourself (and really believing) that “I’m working hard, learning and I’ll get this…”
…instead of telling yourself “I’m just not smart about this and never have been.”
Knowing that learning from challenges is an amazing way to rewire your brain…
…rather than beating yourself up for “not being good at something…” yet.
Looking at what you did well…
…instead of always focusing on what you did wrong.
Appreciating yourself for the effort and hard work that’s moving you forward…
…not just aiming for perfection, which is totally exhausting.
Rather than focusing on judging and labeling yourself as “good at” or “bad at” something, we all feel more confident when we look at what we learned and how we showed up to try.
This is as true in life as it is in the kitchen.
Feeling confident in the kitchen comes from allowing yourself to grow, evolve, try, and even “fail.”
I’ve been experimenting with healthy animal-protein meals, and started with the basics: roast chicken.
I was worried when I started eating meat again…
Worried that I wouldn’t be good at it (I was a vegan chef for over 10 years)…
Worried that I’d feel guilty about eating it…
Worried what other people would think about me and label me as…
But then I started cooking, just to cook.
I started with eggs, then advanced to chicken.
(guess that answers the age-old question, doesn’t it!?)
And I’ve learned a lot in the process:
- how to roast a whole chicken (please remove the gibblits)
- how to make chicken broth (have to add enough water when simmering overnight)
- the best of vegan cooking can make cooking meat recipes even healthier (sea veggies!)
So if you’ve told yourself that you’re no good…
not creative in the kitchen…
can’t do it like your grandma did…
I encourage you to take a risk and switch your mindset.
Try these 3 chicken recipes, all from 1 chicken, over the next week.
Not only is the chicken broth incredibly delicious, even heated up in a mug for a quick lunch, but it’s filled with nutrients and minerals that build your bones and heal your gut.
Roast Chicken with Garlic, Lemon & Rosemary
1 organic, free-range chicken (5-6 pounds)
fresh ground black pepper
2 teaspoons paprika
1 lemon, halved
1 large bunch fresh rosemary
8-10 cloves garlic
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 large yellow onion, cut into 6 wedges
4 carrots, cut into 2-inch chunks
1 bulb fennel, cut into 6 wedges
- Preheat oven to 450 F.
- Remove the giblets from inside the chicken. Rinse the chicken inside and out, and pat dry with paper towels.
- Sprinkle the outside with salt, pepper and paprika.
- Stuff the cavity with rosemary, lemon, and 3 garlic cloves.
- Brush the outside with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and sprinkle again with salt and pepper.
- Place the onion, carrots, fennel and remaining garlic cloves in a roasting pan. Toss with olive oil, a pinch of salt, and more pepper.
- Spread around the roasting pan, and place the chicken on top.
- Roast the chicken for 1 1/2 hours, on the middle rack of the oven, or until the juices run clear when you cut between a leg and a thigh. Remove the chicken and veggies to a platter and cover with foil for 15 minutes.
- Slice and enjoy the chicken, saving all bones and carcass, plus any bits of chicken still clinging to the bones for the bone broth recipe below.
Throwing chicken bones and veggies in a pot with some water is like magic – you end up with a healing, flavorful, CHEAP home remedy for healing your gut and building your bones. The gelatin found in bone broth is a hydrophilic colloid. It attracts and holds liquids, including digestive juices, thereby supporting proper digestion – bone broth “heals and seals” your gut.
Adding a bit of vinegar to the cooking stew helps draw out the calcium and magnesium and other minerals from the bones, making this super nutritious!
Bone broth also helps with reducing join pain and inflammation due to the chondroitin sulphates, glucosamine, and other compounds extracted from the boiled down cartilage
Place leftover chicken bones and carcass with clinging bits of meat in a large pot. Add a variety of vegetables for flavor. I like:
1 yellow onion, quartered
1 head garlic, sliced in half (no need to peel)
1-2 chunked carrots
2-3 celery stalked, chopped
handful of shiitake mushrooms and stems
1 chopped leak
1-2 pieces Kombu sea vegetable
1-2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
Add enough filtered water to cover all of the chicken.
Place over high heat to bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for 1 hour. Add more water and bring back to a low, low simmer. Cook for 12- 24 hours, adding water to keep the chicken covered.
Strain the broth and press the vegetables and chicken to extract all possible liquid.
Store in glass jars for future use, drink hot for a quick snack or lunch, or use to make Chicken Soup recipe below!
Chicken Soup with Bone Broth
6 cups bone broth
1-2 cups cooked leftover chicken, cubed or shredded
1/4 cup yellow onion
1 clove garlic, minced
1 carrot, thinly sliced into rounds
1/4 cup minced celery
6 shiitake mushroom caps, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
1 teaspoon fresh sage leaves, thinly sliced
Combine all ingredients into a soup pot, cover, and bring to a boil over high heat.
Lower heat to a simmer, and cook for 20 minutes. Taste and add 1/4 teaspoon salt if you like.
Learning how to roast a chicken, and use it 3 different ways, while creating a deeply nourishing meal for my family kinda makes me feel like a bad ass.
What’s cooler than knowing how to heal your body with food? Not much.
PMS make you crave chocolate and sugar?
What if you could ease your PMS with something you probably throw away every day?
I love discovering new ways to use what I already have, especially when it means finding a use for something I would normally throw out.
Like any good hippie I’ve been composting my eggshells for years, knowing that returning the minerals from the shells to my potted plants nourishes the soil.
But wait – why don’t I use the rich calcium from those same shells for my bones and health?
Several studies show that “chicken eggshell calcium is a useful way to enrich human bone strength.”
But the more I looked into the benefits of calcium on our health, the more excited I got. It seems that calcium mal-absorption and osteoporosis are at epidemic levels, as is our addiction to sugar.
And since sugar’s high acidity actually causes our body to leach calcium from our bones to balance our blood pH levels, it’s even more important that we get enough calcium, and stop draining it with poor diet choices, to protect our bones.
How can we protect our bones and naturally reduce our sugar cravings?
1,000-1,500 mg of calcium a day can help reduce and even eliminate many symptoms of PMS, including “hypocalcemia,” a hormone-induced state that makes it harder for our female bodies to absorb calcium.
Estrogen, the chief female sex hormone, can lower the absorption of calcium from the intestines by inhibiting the activities of the parathyroid hormone. Which means we need even more calcium, and balanced hormones during our cycle to help our body get the calcium we need.
And I’ve just discovered that eggshell calcium, that is calcium made from powdered egg shells, are a wonderful source of the mineral to answer this problem.
Since eggs are so cheap (get it “cheep”) using your otherwise discarded eggshells as a calcium supplement seems like a great way to help keep your bones strong and your PMS symptoms (including cravings) low.
In addition to making strong bones and teeth, calcium is critical in the release of neurotransmitters, chemicals that serve as messengers between cells within the nervous system, which means when you have enough calcium in your body, your brain and moods are healthier!
1/2 teaspoon of chicken eggshell calcium contains roughly 90% of your daily recommended calcium intake, or 1,000-1,500 mg.
And since most dairy products have an acidic effect on the body, and just can’t be digested by most adult humans, getting enough calcium from cheese isn’t possible.
Yes, greens like kale and bok choy are good sources of calcium too, but many of us are walking around without sufficient calcium stores in our bones, and it’s high time we did something about it.
Here’s a safe, easy way to make your own eggshell calcium at home:
Wash your eggs before cracking them for normal use, and save the shells until you have 1 dozen empty shells.
Place the shells in a pot with enough water to cover and place over high heat.
Boil the eggshells for 10 minutes to kill any bacteria. This is very important to eliminate any salmonella.
Drain the eggshells in a fine meshed strainer or colander.
Place strained eggshells on a cookie sheet and bake at 200F for at least 30 minutes to dry completely.
Place the dried shells in a clean coffee or spice grinder and pulverize to a powder.
Keep your new eggshell calcium in an airtight jar and take 1/2 to 1 teaspoon a day for 1,000-1,500 mg of easily absorbable and cheap calcium.
I tried adding the powdered calcium to my Green & Clean Protein smoothies at breakfast, but it made it more a CRUNCHY than a SMOOTHIE.
So I recommend just adding the 1/2 – 1 teaspoon to 1/2 cup of water and slurping it down. Easy!
Resilience is your ability to adapt to and handle stress and adversity. When you feel resilient, you own your confidence.
It’s the bones of your life and character that keep you upright and alive.
It’s the skills and mindset that keep you moving positively forward, with hope and a sense of humor, gosh darnit.
There are 4 factors which develop and sustain your resilience:
- You know how to make realistic plans and are capable of taking the steps to follow through on them
- A positive self-concept and confidence in your abilities
- Communication and problem-solving skills
- The ability to manage strong impulses and feelings
These are the mental steps you can take to feel your strength and abilities every day.
But what about your body?
How strong do you feel in your physical self?
How are your bones doing, holding up your frame and moving you boldly through life?
We don’t just need confidence, we need calcium.
Chicken Eggshell Calcium Study: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23607686
I’m SO psyched. iTunes released my new podcast show today!
It’s called the Crave Cast: Cravings Whisperer and Women, Food & Desire
I’ll be sharing my best stuff on cravings, health, nutrition, gut health, body confidence, the beauty of our desires, where they come from, and what they really mean. I’ve got a killer line up of expert interviews to share as well.
I’ve heard from lots of you that you want to know about sleep, sugar, and gut health, so I’m covering all those in the next couple of weeks!
Please click the link below here to subscribe for free and help me get this great show out into the ears of more people who need this support!
First, click here: http://alexandrajamieson.com/itunes
Then, click “View in iTunes”
Once iTunes opens, click the next blue button that says SUBSCRIBE and you’re all set!
Crave sweet, but know sugar is keeping you stuck? Try this soup for Fall!
I love sweet – in fact, I always have.
I had 12 cavities before the age of 12, but haven’t had high fructose corn syrup in over 10 years. And my body thanks me for it!
Still, I love sweet, so I add sweet flavor through my day with nutrient dense foods that taste sweet.
Sweet potatoes, carrots, beets, parsnips and more.
And there is some old school medicine in those humble sweet root veggies!
Traditional Chinese Medicine has a long history of connecting different organs with different seasons, elements, foods, and even emotions.
According to the Five Element system, autumn is the season of the Metal element, governed by the lungs and large intestine. This sets up the conditions for flu or head cold, which comes from your body trying to expel excess mucus, toxins, and inferior fats.
Foods with a sour taste help with this detoxification process, and can be included daily as we enter into autumn. These foods include unpasteurized apple cider vinegar, lemons, limes, grapes, raw sauerkraut and pickles, and whole grain sourdough breads.
Pungent foods such as spices, ginger, and black pepper support the Metal element. These stimulate the digestion and help with the assimilation of food. Include pungent taste with seasonal fall foods such as apples, grapes, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, collards, grapes, kale, pears, persimmons, pumpkins, winter squash, and yams.
This soup has a lot of great autumn ingredients and will help keep your body strong and centered throughout the season:
Kale Shiitake Sweet Potato Soup
4 cups water or low-sodium vegetable stock
1 cup fresh shiitake mushrooms, stems removed, caps thinly sliced
1 small sweet potato, peeled, chopped into 1/4 inch cubes
1/2 bunch fresh kale, washed and stems removed
1 teaspoon Mellow white miso, per cup
1/4 cup toasted pumpkin seeds
1. In a saucepan combine the water/broth, shitake mushrooms and sweet potato and bring to a boil.
2. Reduce heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, chop the kale into bite size pieces and add to the soup.
4. Cook until tender, another 8 minutes.
5. Dissolve a teaspoon of light miso in a bowl with a small amount of broth.
6. Ladle in the soup and sprinkle with toasted pumpkin seeds.
Yield: 6 servings
This weekend was super busy for me – you too?!
Yeah, thought so.
School started (for both my son and me) and I’m busy putting together a big launch plan for my book, Women, Food & Desire, which comes out 1/6/15.
And healthy food can (even in my house) feel like a chore when we have so much going on.
And yes – I still crave sugar when things get hectic, but I don’t feel good when I eat it – headaches, brain fog, bacterial overgrowth.
So my sweets need to come from real food that doesn’t drain me.
I know when I have simple, healthy foods on hand, I can juggle the kid, work, and friend time much better.
So, I’m getting back to my food roots as we move into fall –
simple, humble, whole grain, brown rice.
I like to make a pot of brown rice and use it as an easy side dish or quick lunch.
Plus, whole grains help me keep sugar cravings at bay.
Well, when you get enough complex carbohydrates, and chew them well, your body and brain get the energy they need, in a slow drip over the day.
So make up a pot of brown rice (or quinoa for the grain-averse) and use it 7 ways this week!
Simple pot of brown rice:
3 cups short grain brown rice
Rinse rice in 2 changes of water.
Put into a pot with enough water to cover by 2 inches.
Bring to a boil over high heat.
Lower head to low, and cover.
Simmer for 40 minutes.
Turn heat off and let sit for 20 minutes.
This allows the steam to keep cooking the rice.
7 quick recipes that re-use brown rice:
- sushi roll up
wrap a ¼ cup of rice in a sheet of nori paper with a few shredded carrots and enjoy the hand held treat
- brown rice pudding with cinnamon
warm rice in a small pot with coconut milk, a few organic raisins and some cinnamon
- stir fry with greens
heat rice in a pan with coconut oil and chopped bok choy, sprinkle with soy-free soy sauce, ‘coconut aminos’ or tamari
- miso stew
heat 2 cups of water with 1 cup of rice, and whisk in 1 tablespoon chickpea miso for a quick soy-free soup
- rice salad
toss leftover rice with your favorite salad dressing for a side dish
- rice pasta
heat 2 cups rice with a little olive oil and 1 cup of your favorite pasta sauce and add favorite pasta veggies
- rice balls with sesame seeds
roll ¼ cup rice on a plate with ¼ cup toasted sesame seeds and 1/2 teaspoons sea salt – yummy little rice balls!
As with every meal, give a little gratitude for your simple, whole-grain meal.
Research shows that gratitude practices, even a tiny “thanks for the grub!” over your miso stew, helps you feel more optimistic, lowers stress, and increases your happiness.
I know I’m grateful for my grains,
And I’m grateful for you, my online “clan of the crave bears” –
Have a beautiful week,
and enjoy your rice!
P.S. chewing your grains is super important, especially if you suspect leaky gut or have any bloating or tummy issues. Chewing until your grains are almost liquid helps your body digest them better – and we want happy bellies!
Is it your turn to share your big win?
I love the live calls in my Cravings Cleanse program.
We get to hear each other, talk, share, and come together.
And last night’s call was the BEST. Ever.
See, I’m about to start a certification program in Positive Psychology (life-long learner, anyone?) and I went to a talk given by my soon-to-be-teacher this weekend.
She told us that most of us have someone we can turn to when things are tough, when things go wrong…
But few of us have people we can go to when things are GOOD.
And when we have a tribe of cheerleaders who will happily support us when things are AWESOME, we are much more likely to be happy and healthy.
So I want to share with you what my amazing Cravings Cleanse women shared on our call last night –
It was so cool, with happy tears in our eyes, to CHEER each other:
“Something is working – I’m down to a size 14 and I haven’t stepped on a scale yet. I’m feeling teary…”
~ A, New York
“This cleanse and eating this way that really helps me to rid myself of bloating. This has been such a help in making me feel healthier…”
~ Dana, New York
“Thank you – I get so much from these calls and hearing everyone talk about the same things I am feeling. I feel very lucky to be with this group.”
~ Kathy, Rhode Island
“I really do feel like eating healthier now!
This cleanse is really showing me how to be super kind mama to myself!”
~ Eileen, California
“I just feel SO much better in this cleanse!
No more gas, the bloating is gone – the cravings are gone!
I didn’t even want the junk food in front of me because it didn’t feel good.
I’m feeling really satisfied with the shakes! They taste so you can actually add a lot of greens and it still tastes really good.
I’m learning and FEELING which foods make my body feel and WORK well!
All the little tricks you’re teaching are really helping – I’m feeling really good about this program. I’m so grateful for the group – the great energy of the posts and the support.”
~ Sara, New Mexico
“My ankles and wrists are getting smaller – it’s really amazing.
I’m having an easier time feeling well, even in the midst of all my moving, unpacking, the crazy life, I’m sticking with the program.
I feel good, I’m comfortable, and I’m not craving, I’m listening to my body, I’m trusting it, I’m even exercising!
~ A, New York
This is what I want for you.
To feel well in your body…
To be free of the annoying cravings and negative thoughts…
To want to treat yourself really well – and do it…
To be cheered, seen, and appreciated for all you are.
The final Cravings Cleanse live program of 2014 starts next Tuesday, 9/23 at 12pm Eastern.
The calls are all recorded, and you do the steps at your own pace, while we come together for live coaching and support.
Click here to join us now if you’re ready for massive love, powerful shifts in your body, and a new relationship with pleasure, and food.
P.S. The Bring-A-Friend offer is good until Saturday! Click here to join now and you can bring a friend for only $10.
We all love sweet – it’s normal, natural, and very human. I like sugar so much growing up that I had 12 cavities by the age of 12 – yikes! (You’re welcome, Dr. Dentist!) In fact, liking sweet flavors is the only taste preference human babies are born with. Every other taste we develop is learned, so you’re super-natural, sweet tooth baby! BUT (there’s always a BUT, right?) you may be off sugar while detoxing or cleansing…
(like in my 8-week Cravings Cleanse, starting 9/23!)
So what do you do, especially in those first few days, when sugar cravings strike?
Answer with a naturally sweet dessert of course! This baked banana recipe is just like the Bananas Foster my New Orleans-loving Dad likes to make -without the extra sugar and ice cream! I adapted this recipe to work for all 3 cravings types, so wether you’re Firebrand, FeatherWeight or Earth Mama (or Earth Papa), you can enjoy the simple flavors and spices to help answer your sweet tooth calling:
Sugar-Free Baked Bananas Foster!
- 2 bananas*, peeled and split in half long
- Juice of 1 orange* about 1/4 cup
- 1/2 cup unsweetened almond or coconut milk
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground cardomom
- 2 tablespoons organic raisins
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Arrange split bananas in a baking dish, side by side. In a mixing bowl, combine milk, orange juice and spices. Whisk well and pour over bananas.
- Scatter raisins on top.
- Bake for 20 minutes, until beginning to brown.
- Carefully scoop bananas onto plates or bowls and spoon the sauce from the baking dish over each portion.
*Firebrand Fix: Use 2 pitted apricots instead of bananas. *Earth Mama Swap: Use 2 pitted peaches instead of bananas, and use apple juice instead of orange juice.
I saw one of my oldest friends last week, and she totally inspired me, as only a good friend can.
I was on my way to Palm Springs for a health conference, and Jen was driving there from her home in L.A. to bury her grandfather.
She was tired and feeling the stress of how her family was grieving. See, Jen had been going out to visit her grandfather, who lived a couple hours from her home, for months.
She knew he was fading, but she also knew that his mind was mostly gone, he rarely recognized her, and that she had spent a lot of quality time with him recently to say goodbye.
But now she was on vacation, worn out from her high-pressure job producing commercials for television, and she felt she was supposed to end her break early to rush to her grandfather’s side.
Yet, she didn’t.
She knew he wasn’t really there anymore, and that there were tons of cousins, children, and other care givers around him.
Jen was tired and didn’t see the point in upending her break with her daughter and husband to go see a man who wouldn’t know she was there.
“Yes,” she told me, “I love my grandfather! But I’ve said my goodbyes and need to take care of my kid and myself. My mom is there with her dad, and she told me not to wear myself out – she understood. But I feel this pressure to drop my life, show up and grieve in a certain way, when really I just need to take care of me.”
Sweetheart, I told her, the living can really mess up a decent death.
Sometimes people think they need to look like the people in movies do – all rushing home for a dramatic end-of-life moment.
Not that she needed it, but since my mom died eight months ago, I gave her my older-friend-whose-mom-just-died-permission to do exactly what felt right for her:
“If you feel complete with Grandpa, don’t let the rest of the family guilt you into doing something that may make you feel even worse”, I said.
I hadn’t been there when my mom died. My brother and I had been on the phone, him at Mom’s bedside, and we talked about what we thought would happen. She went so fast, after slipping into a morphine aided sleep, that we were all surprised when the cancer took her life.
Yet, how it all happened was perfect. The final conversation we all had, my brother and I were joking on speaker phone, laughing at silly memories, and Mom piped in, with her clearest voice I’d heard in days, “you two are so silly!”
That was the perfect goodbye. She knew we had each other, and that she had given us everything she could in this life.
I mentioned that I was coming to Palm Springs this weekend and would love to see her.
It had been a tough week for her, and Jen just wanted to say goodbye to her grandfather without having to upend her life. Her mom had arranged for a small, private service at the funeral home before his body was sent to Oregon, where he would be buried.
So Jen drove to Palm Springs and picked me up at the airport when I flew in from New York.
We went out for Mexican food, reminisced and made each other laugh so hard I almost peed my pants. Sharing a hotel room, we told stories, asked each other advice, and went for a dip in the hot tub late that night.
The next morning, as we shared a plate of almost-ripe hotel fruit on the soon-to-be-blistering desert patio, Jen told me more about why life had been so exhausting and challenging lately.
Being in show business may seem glamorous from the outside, but Jen knows first hand what a grind it can be to organize, budget, and shoot a multi-million dollar commercial.
She has produced a few Super Bowl ads, and has worked one-on-one with some of the biggest names in Hollywood. Handling major egos, huge budgets, endless details, and constant changes is a big job, but Jen has a secret weapon:
Her sense of humor.
One of the things I’ve always loved about Jen is how freakin’ hilarious she is – I mean, she cracks me up! Together we can be raunchy, non-politically correct, and downright lewd in the best possible way.
And you know what I like about funny people? How smart they are.
So Jen is smart, funny, generous and a hard worker.
She works in a job that demands tons of energy, detail oriented mental focus, the skills of a trained diplomat, hours of commuting in L.A. traffic, and she has a family that wants her time and attention too.
Oh, and did I mention she’s a total knock-out?
Ok, this might feel a bit like a love letter right now, but when you have a friend that make you feel super cool because they’re amazing and they like YOU, it’s pretty fun to share that.
And I learned something new from Jen this weekend.
I asked how she managed to handle the crazy hours, big jobs, traffic and normal marriage stuff with such grace.
And she turned right around and gave me some of the credit.
“Alex,” she said. “I’ve been in your cleanse programs and when we talk you always ask how I’m doing. Working with you helped me figure out I was celiac and that the gluten I was eating was destroying my mood and energy.”
Looking up from our almost-tasty fruit, Jen said “I used to have pretty bad habits at work, and now I know exactly how to set up my shoots so that the catering truck and editing rooms have what I need to eat to stay healthy! I keep the right foods around because you taught me that I had to prepare to succeed.”
Wow… that felt pretty awesome.
She went on to tell me how the confidence she feels in knowing her body so well allows her to speak out and ask for what she needs – she doesn’t let her energy, willpower and patience get depleted like she used to.
Instead, she made sure she had hard-boiled eggs, veggies, waters, and other snacks on hand for a busy afternoon.
She called it her survival kit.
Jen knows her body so well, she takes better care of herself, even when it might not be what other people think she should do…
Even when she gets nasty comments from her extended family because they think she should act differently, Jen stands her ground and preserves her energy…
Even when people at work make fun of her for ordering sautéed spinach when everyone else is eating hot dogs, Jen does what’s right for her…
When she orders green protein smoothies (atta girl!) for the entire office for breakfast so that she doesn’t stick out as the weirdo who won’t eat the pastries, Jen is preserving her willpower for the rest of the day.
When I think about all the little ways that Jen preserves her energy, strength, spirit, and beautiful soul through her tiny habits, I realize that Jen isn’t just in survival mode…
Jen is thriving.
CRAVE WORTHY LIFE CHALLENGE
- What are the two biggest pain points in your day? When do you get triggered to crave something you know isn’t good for you? Write that down…
- What would you like to feel instead of that pain? I call this your Big MODE (big motivating desire –the way you WANT to feel)
- What else can you do in that moment to achieve your Big MODE?
- Write down at least 2 other things you can do to prepare so that when those pain points arise, you have your survival kit of ideas and healthy food ready (or should we call it a thrive kit?)
Creating a life worth craving begins with this kind of awareness.
And it takes guts.
It’s time to be brave and strong and do what’s true for you, sweetheart.
It’s time to thrive, not just survive.