Session #2: Practicing Awareness


 

Habit Check In

Each week will check in on the daily habit you have set for yourself. Remember that this habit should be so small that you could practice it every day. As you progress through the program you will learn about yourself through this one habit. You may find that completing your habit throughout the week is simple, but when it comes to the weekend you forget. Is this also the case for your other healthy habits? Or you might find yourself telling yourself you do the habit in 5 minutes, but never get to it. Does this also happen in other areas of your life? This one small habit can be quite revealing!

 

Practicing Awareness

The School of Habit program is built on five core habits: Purpose, Awareness, Grit, Preparation, and Mindfulness. Last week we determined the purpose for our work, and this week we will focus on awareness. Awareness will be what we use to help identify what areas need our attention the most.

One of the easiest ways to begin practicing awareness is to notice the ebb and flow of our energy. Most of our physical energy comes from food as a core source, while sleep is our body’s chance to recover. We are misguided in thinking that our energy comes from sleep. Our food intake is (literally) converted to energy that our body uses to function. When we are low on recovery through lack of sleep, stress, and physical activity, our body uses energy sources for our primary bodily functions. This leaves little energy left for decision making. And this is why making positive decisions when you’re low on energy is so hard!

An important part of understanding the role of energy in our lives is to determine what food sources give you energy, and what sources take away energy. I encourage you to ask yourself “What foods rob me of energy?” These are often heavy foods, that are high in sugar and low in protein. However, there may be specific food groups that cause a dip in energy for your body. The goal is to discover what those might be for you.

 What foods rob you of energy?

In addition, it is important to determine what foods give you energy. This program is not a diet or fitness program, instead it is built on habits. At their core habits are actions you take – not something you avoid. Our goal is to integrate more of what gives you energy, and less of what doesn’t. Ask yourself, “What foods give me energy and life me up?” Once these have been identified, make sure they fit into your life on a consistent basis!

 What foods give you energy and life you up?

 

4-Day Energy Experiment

To practice the habit of awareness, you will do a data driven experiment to help you gather some ideas on how your food impacts your energy levels. This activity is the 4-Day Energy Experiment, and it will break down the types of food at each meal to help understand energy levels throughout the day.

The activity begins by defining your protein sources at each meal. We’re starting with protein because it’s one of the easiest food sources to be deficient in. You will record your food breakdown and protein sources for each meal over four days, and then track your energy levels immediately after, and two hours later. It’s important to note that there is no judgement in this process. We are only focusing on curiosity!

If this activity becomes overwhelming, you have the option of doing the 4-Day Energy Experience on page 2, which does not dictate protein sources and focuses on building the habit of awareness around energy and food.

You can find this activity here. Need some ideas for plant protein? Use this guide.

 

Action Step

  • Practice the 4-Day Energy Experiment
  • Complete and track your habit for the next 7 days