Skinny Daily Post

Invincible.

Donít those ads look tempting? You know the ones Ė theyíre trying to get you to buy the latest in processed foods. It has only a few calories, or no trans fat, or no cholesterol or few net carbs or whatever. But youíve made the choice to eat whole foods. Or these goodies will put you over your plan for the day. Week. Or set you off on a binge.

Letís hold on a second. Whatís going on here? Review your goals. Ask yourself what you REALLY want. Figure out what the emotion is, and why you’re susceptible to the ads. Go drink some water. Breathe. Do whatever you have to do to calm yourself down [can you tell Iím being tempted?]

All better? LETíS HAVE A REWARD! But instead of diving headfirst into the candy dish on Jonathanís bossís desk, letís look at what people who are trying to break other habits do. And in this case, Iím thinking about people who stop smoking.

Many of them take the money they would have spent on cigarettes and stash it in a jar. It adds up fast! With cigarettes costing more than $2.00 a pack at their cheapest, for a pack-a-day smoker, thatís at least $14.00 a week. Or $28.00 a week for people who pay $4.00 a pack.

And how many of us could spend, say, $3.00 a day on not-in-our-best-interests food? So, letís take that empty cookie jar and start stashing the money we could have spent on that stuff. How much could I save by banking the cost of the junk? Perhaps itíll be enough to get me to Paris!

Iím going to try this for a week. Every time I resist temptation, Iím going to deposit the cost in a box. This doesnít mean Iím going to give up chocolate entirely. No sense in being irrational here!

Care to join me?

8 thoughts on “Saving calories, saving money

  1. Kelly says:

    What a cool idea! I was thinking I could do this to have some money set aside to use towards buying the Cathe Hardocre workout series or some other fitness related thing.

    I’m sure that money can add up!

  2. Anonymous says:

    $4.00 a pack! I live in Canada and here they are over $10 a pack even the cheapest!

    ūüôā

  3. Kristi says:

    Usually what stops me from buying junk is that I don’t have any money with me.

  4. Florence says:

    This is an awesome idea. I did this when I stopped smoking and I believe I bought a bike (it was 12 years ago so it’s a little fuzzy). I’m going to start doing this right this minute since I was staring longingly at the cookies on the table ūüôā

  5. jonquil says:

    When I was quitting smoking, I did save a surprising amount of money. But the main thing: I had to get all cigarettes out of my life, stop looking at ads, stop going to clubs where people are smoking, and even get away from friends who were smokers. When you have a physical addiction like smoking, I really think you have to stay out of contact with the addictive substance as much as possible. Part of resisting temptation is avoiding it in the first place.

    Even now, 20 years after I quit, Camel ads make my mouth water and I have to cross the street to avoid the sweet smell of imported tobacco in specialty shops. Just lighting a match to start a fire makes me think of smoking. But that’s it, you know– “I will always be an addict– I just choose, minute by minute, not to do the drug.” A cliche, but true.

    Yes, reward yourself for resisting temptation, but don’t test your resistance any more than you absolutely have to. So: stop looking at all those food ads in the first place. Get out of the cracker aisle in the grocery store. Put the cookies and pretzels down the garbage disposal. Get someone else to do the shopping if that’s what it takes. Shut your eyes and hold your breath if that’s what it takes!

    We are all in a sort of war zone, constantly bombarded with adversarial advertising and come-ons. Temptation is too much with us. So defend yourself! Get the addictive substance out of your space and out of your head as much as you can, so you won’t have to put your “resistance” money in the cookie jar as often. And while you’re at it, get rid of the damn cookie jar!

    The reward of all this avoidance behavior: a lot less stress and a lot more serenity, believe me. Unsurprisingly, it’s much easier to resist when you’re less stressed, and you can get a positive feedback loop going. I mean, I can’t imagine how tortured and worn out I would be if I had Camels in the house and had to resist that every day. And if I were a heroin addict, I sure wouldn’t keep a dime bag on the counter and needles in the cutlery drawer. I’d have to get rid of the stuff. Totally.

    So, Jane, avoid first, resist if you can’t avoid, is my advice, FWIW. Then take all the reward money and travel. (Maybe not Paris– too many pastry shops.) Or even better: arrange for more respite care for AM so you can get out and enjoy yourself often. How amazingly luxurious and de-stressing would that reward be? ūüôā

  6. Suzanne says:

    Ha – skip Paris ’cause there are too many pastry shops? Better yet, get to Paris as soon as possible – you can walk for hours and hours and always have amazing views surrounding you. Climb the Eiffel Tower for the fun of it, and walk all day ’cause you love it, but never skip an amazing trip like that over fear of food!

  7. jane says:

    you folks are great!! actually, the reason for the trip to PAris is so that i can buy a FABULOUS dress!! pastry shops or not. and frankly, i DO plan to indulge in a pastry or two. small. a few bites. that’s it.

  8. Quinn says:

    Jane? Banking the cost of that junky prepared, processed food will save you LOTS of money. Maybe won’t get you to Paris, what with the Euro going up against the Dollar, but will buy you more than a few new dresses! Full-price dresses, at that!

    Several years ago I went through some economic hard times. Had rework my budget down to the penny. Decided to make the effort to start cooking from scratch again. Lots of stews, soups, easy stuff that could be refrigerated or frozen in single servings for packed lunches, etc.

    Cut my food bill in HALF!! No kidding. My cholesterol dropped, too. ūüôā

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