Seven Habits for An Outstanding Life

Let’s talk about habits, shall we? There are good ones, there are bad ones, there are fun ones, and there are the ones that produce shameless guilt. As I’ve gotten older, though, I have found a few habits that are now crucial to my functioning as a productive member of society.

So that we are clear, the term “productive member of society” means that I can function with a smile on my face, not feel so overwhelmed by life that I want to give up, relatively anxiety free, and know – without a doubt – that no matter what happens during the day, I am covered in God’s love, grace, and mercy.

Oh trust me, friends, I know the list is above is a tall order. But if we shoot for the moon, we’ll land among the stars, right? Continue reading

I Went to Starbucks. Here’s what it cost me.

STARBUCKSAnyone who knows me knows that I love Starbucks. I actually give a lecture in one of my classes based on the business model of Starbuck’s and why they are so successful. I understand that it’s one of those things that you either love, or you hate, or you love to hate. But I love them. I would jump on Oprah’s couch and shout it to the masses if I could. I. LOVE. STARBUCKS.

My usual visit to Starbucks has been interrupted this summer because school is out for the kids. My favorite location is near the kids’ school, so it’s easy to dart in and out as I’m dropping them off at school. Reason #1 that I can’t wait until school starts next week.

However,  I was near the school one day last week and I did have the opportunity to stop by my favorite place and I was oh-so-excited about the experience that I failed to plan ahead. I simply enjoyed my time there, soaked in the atmosphere, loved hearing my name called as my drink was ready, and felt so….at home again.

And while I was sipping my raspberry white chocolate mocha and imagining that I didn’t have a care in the world, I remembered something quite important.

I AM SUPPOSED TO BE MONITORING MY SUGAR INTAKE. And by monitoring, I actually mean limiting and decreasing the amount of sugar I eat each day.

But y’all — if I can just be honest and enter a judgement-free zone with you —  I need to tell you that remembering my mandatory low-carb lifestyle halfway into that mocha did absolutely nothing for the mocha or me. Yes, I finished it. It was delightful.

I did check the nutritional values and I discovered that my drink had 63 grams of sugar in it. While I am watching my sugar intake, I am not completely sugar free and I can have  some sugar each day. Usually, I cure my sugar fix with a serving of fresh fruit or melba crackers, or a bit of salad dressing on my salad. But this particular day, because of the mocha, there was no room for anything else. Not even some watermelon.

Because I drank my entire allotment of carbs in one sitting. Out of habit. And that should not happen again.

Sometimes, we have to develop a plan of action and pause to make intentional choices when we have a lifestyle change. 

What I’ve learned is that habits can be hard to break, but in the end we must break them. We must also make intentional choices that align with our goals and our priorities. So as I acknowledge that change is not easy, it is necessary. And no matter what my old habits are, I now have new habits. And, dear friends, I am taking low-carb suggestions on drinks from Starbucks.