How much of what you do happens purely because you’ve always done it that way?
It can be a scary thought.
Especially when perhaps you never made a conscious decision to start doing it that way… you’re simply unconsciously modeling what you saw as a child.
For better or worse.
Maybe you can relate to some of these positive habits I’ve carried through from my childhood… or perhaps you do the exact opposite?
=> start the day with a great breakfast.
I remember my mum always made time for natural muesli with yoghurt and fruit – even when she was starting work as a nurse at 7 am. I still make time for an omelette before my first client at 5.45am.
Now my definition of ‘great’ has certainly changed however the important component is giving my body the fuel that I think is best for it first thing before I expect it to power into the day.
=> take lunch and snacks to work.
Again I’ve got mum to thank for this cost effective and body supportive habit. Breaks were unreliable, inconsistent and short so she made sure she had great food ready for when that break did pop up.
If you find yourself regularly working through lunch then getting over hungry and making the choice you know doesn’t support your best body them it’s time to pack your lunch.
=> prepare the night before… and get up as soon as the alarm goes off!
It’s the old remove friction theory – if you have your clothes set out and bag packed the night before you’ll be much more inclined to get that early am exercise done or simple sit down and eat a great breakfast… rather than starting the day rushing and cutting corners on your best morning routine.
=> eat three proper meals.
I’ve recently changed my mind from a must eat every 3 hours mentality to either 2 or 4 or 6 meals can work. It really comes down to the quality of fuel. However I still subscribe to the habit my parents installed that each main meal needs to be ‘a proper meal’ …whatever that means, however my interpretation has always started with lots of veg and some lean protein are the non-negotiables.
And it works.
Of course pasta with garlic bread or lasagne with garlic bread or cannelloni with, yeah you guessed it… (!) were some of my fav meals as a kid. However they were always accompanied by a hearty salad or at the very least the sauce was jam packed with masses of veg (not merely a tad of tomato and onion, but zucchini, mushroom, eggplant, asparagus, spinach and many other veg friends)
The days without green veg were a super rare treat reserved for when dad was on a business trip and we’d have potato fritters or Spanish omelette.
Now I actually enjoy my green veg – and I rarely go a meal let alone a day without some green love, however my point is I didn’t love broccoli and asparagus and brussels as a kid, however I was lucky enough to have eating them daily intalled as a habit for me. Non negotiable!
=> dessert is for special occasions not every night.
The value here is self explanatory right?
And now to the less helpful inherited habit.
Yes there’s only one I’m aware of right now.
=> a pre dinner drink/wine with dinner.
Now that’s a habit you (I!) can get carried away with right?
It’s my intention that this post gets you thinking about the habits you’ve carried forward with you from childhood.
No need for blame.
It is a chance to become aware of what great habits you’re grateful for AND equally where it’s time to create change.
To swap, upgrade or reframe your old way of thinking.
When deciding whether a habit you’ve carried from childhood needs to go, here are some good (confronting) questions to ask yourself:
Is the habit serving you – Yes it’s likely giving you something or allowing you to avoid something – HOWEVER, is it getting you the health result you want?
Do your parents have the results you’re seeking?
And finally, Do you want your kids to have the results you have?
What’s one habit you’ve carried with you from childhood that is working really well?