Editor’s Note: This is a guest post from Howie Jacobson, PhD of FitFam and does NOT necessarily represent the opinions of DiseaseProof or Dr. Fuhrman.
Packing school lunches is always a challenge in my house. So it was with some surprise that my 9-year-old son suddenly started asking for apples for lunch about a month and a half ago.
To me, apples are the perfect food. They resist most mild forms of travel abuse, unlike plums and peaches. They come in nice colors and can be eaten one-handed while you do your school work.
But for finicky kids, apples present a problem. The skin!
Skin the apple ahead of time, and it turns brown. Leave the skin on and a third grader will see ammo-deflecting armor surrounding his fruit, rather than a thin and delicious protective layer. The apple will come home untouched or worse, thrown away with one guilty bite taken out of it.
Back to the point, why was my son so excited about apples?
Turns out his teacher, who has a keen interest in all things mechanical, had brought to class an apple peeler and corer. Now, all of a sudden, my son's apple was the coolest thing at lunchtime, because he could crank this simple machine and magically peel and core it in front of his classmate's amazed and appreciative eyes.
Now all the kids want apples for lunch. Probably an overstatement, but I'm a little excited here!
So what's my takeaway? Presentation matters. The experience of food matters. Peer pressure matters. And most of all, if you want to change behavior, use toys. The apple gadget provided immediate gratification prior to the first bite. The apple jumped to the front of the awesome-dessert line because it started with momentum.
When you get a strong spasm of intention to eat right, to exercise, to meditate, to do whatever it is that supports your highest good and yet doesn't happen as often as it should. Use that POWER MOMENT to shift your future environment.
Buy an apple peeler, go for a fun run, clean out your study and make it a meditation room, use that momentum! Create ongoing favorable conditions, so doing the right thing becomes fun and easy.