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Unlocking Relationship Harmony Through Nutritional Compromise - #TakeYourLifeBack - Vol.9

Updated: Sep 22, 2023

Have you ever decided to embark on a new diet and nutrition program only to face opposition from a loved one? This is a common theme among couples as they contend with it on a daily basis. One person might aim to eliminate simple carbs like bread and pasta, while another might opt for a reduced intake of dairy products. How can we find common ground and balance each other out, allowing us to move forward and pursue our independent, and sometimes very different, goals? I believe the answer lies in compromise. Let's explore this topic together and devise some solutions.

I've included the definition of compromise above for those who may need a refresher. It's a word that not everyone readily uses but should understand because of its basic yet powerful nature. As you may already know, I'm continually working on fine-tuning my fitness and nutrition, and what I consume daily has a significant impact on my ability to either adhere to or abandon my desired eating habits.

Here's an example: I recently decided to eat five small meals a day with a focus on high-protein, nutrient-dense foods made from single ingredients, such as steak and broccoli. After about three days, I started feeling good, and my wife joined me in this program. She even helped by selecting foods that aligned with my goals and that I would enjoy eating. It created a sense of community and togetherness as we both harmoniously pursued our goals.

However, on the fourth night of this program, while enjoying some delicious grilled chicken with zucchini, she looked at me and said, "I want something a bit heartier." She suggested having chicken pot pie for dinner the next night. As a fan of such dishes, I was tempted to join her for a carb-filled meal but also felt a sense of abandonment. Why was she pushing my diet aside and trying to impose this on me? She knew it wasn't in line with my preferences, right? After all, it wasn't a single-ingredient, nutrient-dense meal. This is where we employ that word from the beginning: compromise.

I understand that she wants something different, and chicken pot pie happens to be one of her favorite meals to prepare. I'm not complaining here—I'm genuinely grateful to have a wonderful wife who enjoys cooking delicious meals. I just wish they aligned with my preferences every day. However, that's unrealistic; sometimes, we have to practice some give and take. So, I compromised with a big smile on my face and words like, "Yes, dear, that sounds amazing." I temporarily set aside my healthy diet and enjoyed the chicken pot pie, complete with heavy cream and carbs galore. For compromise to be effective, though, it's essential to strike a balance.

The ability to compromise leads to better outcomes than being rigid or resentful when our nutritional preferences don't align. Imagine if neither of us wanted to eat what the other desired; that would surely lead to turmoil down the road. Sharing meals that both of us cook and prepare is one of the most intimate activities for a couple, so we don't compromise on that; instead, we find common ground. Together, we review what's important to us as individuals and then creatively incorporate those elements into our diets and shared meals. Here's a fun example: we replaced regular pasta with chickpea pasta, and it turned out to be a great solution! I got to reduce my carb intake while adding protein, and she still got to enjoy her pasta dish. I'm still meeting my goals, and she's meeting hers; it just tastes a bit different.

#TakeYourLifeBack from the inability to compromise!

~ arherring

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