How to Create a Visual Healthy Eating Plan

How to Create a Visual Healthy Eating PlanSummer is fast approaching, and if you’re anything like me you’ll be in a blind panic that the only summer clothing that still fits you is your flip flops!

I have taken part in every possible healthy eating regime known to man, purely for blogging purposes of course! So, what have I discovered? Ultimately, I’ve realised that I have absolutely no willpower whatsoever – zilch, nada, nowt! I begin full of enthusiasm and dedication to the cause, but it rarely lasts. The problem here is not the regime; I know so many people who are at their ideal weight and loving a new found confidence after following a specific routine. I understand that my problem is inside my head, and unless I can ditch the self-loathing, I will never crack this.

However, one of the personal development tools I’ve started to use that does help me to stay on track is taking photographs of my favourite healthy meals and designing a meal planner around the images. I’m a visual person and, therefore, I find it motivating to see results and imagine myself living this. When I wrote my first self-help book, I created the phrase Dream It, Live It, Become It, and I find this affirmation to be true in every aspect of my life.

I thought I’d show you what I meant about a visual meal planner by giving you an example below. I stick my planner on the fridge door which helps me to stay on plan as we creep ever closer to strappy tops and hot pant weather.

The first thing I do is find a photograph of myself that I love. One that shows me at what I perceive to be ‘my best.’ That could be an ideal weight, or a time when I was happy, confident, or just feeling balanced.

Then, I add photographs to my visual meal planner, leaving space for me to write notes, recipes, or ingredient lists. You could also add a target date if you’re working towards a specific event like a wedding or holiday.

One of my lovely blogger pals, Ritu, who writes the But I Smile Anyway blog has lost weight recently. She is the one who inspired me to photograph the meals I loved and create the visual healthy eating plan. You can read some of Ritu’s healthy eating posts HERE.

Keeping track of your food via a food diary/journal is an important step to staying in control. It’s far too easy to forget all about that deep fried Mars bar you had after lunch if you haven’t written it down. Planning my meals takes away the stress of ‘what’s for dinner?’ but writing down all the main meals, as well as the little bits that I munch on throughout the day helps me to understand my eating habits better and make necessary changes. I talk about meal planning more in my new book, How I Motivated Myself to Succeed which is due out later this year.

It’s not too late to lose a few pounds or organise your meals before the sun decides to show itself, and we embrace the summer months. Start today. Whip up a delicious curry, spaghetti Bolognese, or salmon and veg then take a picture of it on your phone. Collect them as you go and build up a visual healthy eating plan. You could go a step further and start an Instagram page or Pinterest board to collate your images.

I’d love to hear about your top tips for staying on track with healthy eating or weight loss. Feel free to share your stories in the comments.

Want to know about my meals?

From L – R and top – bottom:

Porridge Oats with milk and berries

Avocado and pepper crush with bacon on ryvita

Teriyaki salmon with wholemeal spaghetti and courgette

Wholemeal toast with natural yogurt, cinnamon and berries

Feta and spinach omelette

Chicken with spinach and tomatoes

Eggy Bread (fried without oil) bananas and blueberries

Chilli prawn linguini

Cajun chicken kebabs with homemade chips

Inspirational ABBA logo

Exciting news! I have been nominated for the Most Inspirational Blogger Award at the 2017 Bloggers Bash!

The criteria is: Who consistently inspires you? Is there a blogger that’s thought provoking and inquisitive? Or perhaps they have become a muse to you with constant provision of inspirational content or imagery? Who’s the one blogger that’s touched your heart? This is the nomination for them.

I would love your vote so please feel free to follow the link and cast your vote. Thanks x

Are You Holding Yourself Back? #SelfCare

Are you holding backWhen we’re in our tweens, we long to reach our teens. When we finally arrive at that sweet sixteen landmark, we long for adulthood.

As adults, many of us aren’t prepared for the mess of responsibilities, or indeed, the real-life influences that can suck out our creative soul. Time goes by, and our lives can feel a little bit out of control. That electricity bill needs to be paid, the sales meeting must be attended, and the car has to be insured, but when do we make time for the dreams and aspirations we had growing up?

As an eight-year-old, I had clear ideas of becoming an author, but it wasn’t until I reached the ripe old age of forty-two that I got around to doing something about it. For thirty-four years I’d held myself back in a variety of ways. Throughout my twenties, and thirties I often woke in the middle of the night dreaming about characters, and plot twists, but I used the excuse of an unhappy marriage, subsequent divorce, and being a single mum as a way of telling myself I didn’t have time to write.

I allowed my limiting beliefs to control my actions. ‘I’m not good enough,’ and ‘people will think I’m stupid,’ were constant thought patterns. I’d built these walls around myself, and it took many years before I realised they were preventing me from achieving my writing dreams. Read more

Using Acupuncture to Release Negative Emotions #Wellbeing

Using Acupuncture to Release Negative EmotionsI’ve been a bit under the weather this week. I succumbed to a bug and have been coughing and spluttering all over the place. Shares in Kleenex must have gone through the roof! I went for my usual acupuncture session yesterday, and even my wonderful therapist had to double check my multiple pulses. ‘Hmm, it’s not looking good!’ was her diagnosis.

As I reclined on the couch, covered in fine needles, trying not to cough and impale myself on the one strategically located at my throat, it reminded me of a session earlier this year which totally blew me away. As this blog is now on a new blogging platform, I thought I’d re-share the experience as it had such a powerful impact on me.

Releasing Negative Emotions.

Since the middle of last year, I have had regular acupuncture sessions with a wonderful therapist called Jo; she is insightful, compassionate, and highly skilled. I know without any doubt that the sessions are making a difference, not just physically, but emotionally. Read more