Fighting The Funnel
We’re programmed from an early age to do what other people do. We follow the crowd, even those of us who occasionally march to our own rhythms. From infant mimicry to adolescent fitting in to subliminal, follow-the-crowd behavior ubiquitous in adult life, even we humans simply execute the code.
As this pondering recently intersected with yet another year’s physical resulting in the reminder that my health habits are killing me, it occurred I should look at de-programming myself. Call it “lifestyle change,” if you wish, but the specter of some evil developer I’m fighting tends to motivate me more.
The first experiment in de-programming was to simply focus on the output of certain foods and beverages. No, I’m not talking about analyzing my stool — but rather focusing on how I feel after consumption, both in short- and long-term intervals.
- Immediately after I consume soda or sugary drinks, I feel bloated, slightly uncomfortable and belch a lot. Immediate after I drink water, I feel cool, calm and refreshed.
- An hour after I drink soda, I’m focused on the aftertaste or film of plaque around my mouth and am craving another soda. An hour after I drink water, I feel healthy and perhaps crave more since that’s a generally positive mode.
Yes, I also have to pee. But that’s consistent between the two.
We’re programmed by media and mates, short-term fixes and the busy-ness of life, to consume food and beverage in the short-term. What will taste good? We’re not programmed to consume either in the long-term: What will feel good?
Have a burger or pizza for lunch. Then measure how you feel about 2:oo p.m. or so. The next day, have a salad for lunch. Then notice the difference.
Granted, my love of certain cheeses, sugars and dead bovine will interrupt my feel-vs-taste decision-making, but this approach seems to be gaining momentum in my daily habits. My hope is that it will help me from continuing to be sucked into the funnels – marketing ones, habit ones, short-term fixation ones – and consume with long-term feeling in mind.
Perhaps it could help your thinking, too.
February 9, 2013