Written by Donat a/k/a The Vegan Hubby
This is how some burned potatoes taught me the most important trait to have in order to eat a vegan diet, or any diet for that matter.
Some people might say that perseverance, will power or determination is the most important personal trait to have in order to finally switch over to a vegan diet. I say that the most important trait is something much simpler… and perhaps unexpected.
A sense of humor. That’s right, the most important trait to have in order to be able to successfully change diets is a sense of humor. Persevering is important, will power is wonderful, and being determined is great! However, those qualities fall short long term. Fad diets all run on them and seem to make good headway initially but in the end utterly fail. Here is their downfall: they all require a lot of effort and force. Force has a limited ability to make things happen and while force is fantastic for temporary changes, something much more powerful is required to really make an impact.
This is where a sense of humor comes in. Humor is effortless. Humor has powers that all the exertion in the world cannot rival. Laughter can turn a “trying” experience and into an enjoyable one, even though the events stay the same. When we want to make changes in our lives, they CAN be stressful, hard and frustrating but there is no commandment that states that it has to be. A sense of humor can turn changes in our lives into adventures that are delightful, exciting and a lot of fun.
I think a lot of vegans and striving vegans take themselves way too seriously. Lighten up. If you are trying to switch to a vegan diet and are having a hard time with it or are afraid to try it because of all the things that you will have to do without, try finding the humor in all of it. There is so much humor in the world of food that you will never run out of things to amuse you. I recently saw pre-cut, pealed and packaged avocados in my local supermarket that really tickled me. Even the daily setbacks and struggles are rife with silliness. Take the following example:
A couple of weeks ago I tried making a potato dish that my wife likes for dinner. Despite my best efforts, I must admit that I thoroughly messed up and destroyed the dish. I’m not saying it was just not that good or that it could have been a little better. I felt bad for the garbage can to have to hold this atrocity! Completely inedible. So as a stubborn male, what do I do? I try again! And this time I made something we can eat… although barely. To my horror, in my haste and rashness I ended up replicating my mistake from round one. Now I mess up meals maybe a couple of times in a year tops so twice in one night nearly blew my mind. Luckily for me, I have an amazing supportive wife who just laughed about it and after a couple of self-deprecating jokes had me laughing too. Sure it wasn’t the most pleasant thing to have gone through but in the grand scheme of things, it was a minuscule set back at best. Laughing about the “incident(s)” helped me let go past mistake(s) and allowed me to just keep on cooking and enjoying myself. Now we have one more thing to laugh about, and that’s always a good thing.
So try taking this whole food thing a little more lightly and you are bound to get better results. This holds true regardless whether you are already a vegan or are just trying to incorporate some more vegan foods here and there. It might just be the thing you need most.
Do you take food a little too seriously? Have any tricks to overcome it? Let us know in the comments!