Defending my healthy choices
On my recent vacation to Washington, D.C., I had endured a turbulent airplane landing, my stomach was upset, and I didn't want anything greasy or fried.
All I wanted was a salad. Only crisp, cool, soothing vegetables and salad dressing would do it.
I wasn’t trying to make a point or show off how healthy I was being. I just wanted a salad.
However, one of my travel companions commented on my salad. As she ate her hamburger and fries, she explained how she didn’t like salads because they took so much work to cut up and so long to eat.
There have been times when I have been a little offended when someone feels the need to point out, or even put down, my choice to have a salad. Luckily, that day, I was too hungry to care what she thought. I simply nodded at her and kept eating. And boy, was it tasty. It was just what I needed to fill my stomach and settle it down.
But later, when I reflected on it, it made me wonder if my action made her feel guilty in some way. I can see why my action might have been interpreted as some sort of example or statement, especially if she somehow felt she hadn’t made the best choice for herself.
I’ve had other occasions when people feel the need to point out my choices of salads, fresh or steamed vegetables or fresh fruit.
It is at times like this when I call upon the nine qualities of a healthy life, which I wrote about in my last post.
Since I was not feeling good as a result of the air turbulence and not having any food in my stomach, I tuned in to what my body needed, and I was honest about it. I needed pure foods, not grease or fat.
I also called on my defiance. Although those hamburgers and french fries looked really good, and it would have been easy to say, "I'll have them because everyone else is," I did not give in.
I also was defensive. Not with words, because I was too busy stuffing lettuce into my mouth. But I was defensive with my actions. The fact that my response to her comments was to simply keep eating what I had chosen was my message that I was confident in my choice.
In most cases, I’m not trying to be self-righteous or snobby in my healthy choices. I’m simply doing what I feel is best for myself. If others wish to take an example from it, that’s fine. If they wish to comment on my choices in an effort to defend their own, that's when remembering the nine qualities comes in handy.
If you want to make a healthy food choice, you should do so, no matter how it makes other people feel. What's important is how it makes you feel.
Maybe, just maybe, if you are seen as an example of what it means to be healthy, it will make a difference for someone around you. If you can influence just one person with your good choices, you have done your part to make the world just a little healthier.
And if you can't, well then, you can still influence yourself. And that's what really matters.
What examples do you have of times people commented on something you were eating? How did it make you feel? How did you respond? Leave me a comment!