My husband and I have come to the conclusion that when it comes to long-standing issues that cause us both aggravation, it’s worth it to try radical change instead of a small tweak. So it was with the question of "What’s for dinner?"–probably the three most dreaded words on a weekday at 5pm in any family.
I got the idea of radical change from a Fast Company magazine article, entitled Change or Die. The article dispels myths on how people make personal changes, even when keeping the status quo could lead to death. The author cites examples from the health care industry of trying to changing patient behavior after a heart attack. The results are surprising. Well, I won’t spoil the article for you but here’s one point the article makes:
Radical, sweeping changes are often easier to make and sustain than small, gradual changes because they quickly yield benefits.
So back to the "What’s for dinner?" issue. For years, we had tried to plan out menus at the beginning of the week, assign role and responsibilities for specific days to cook and for grocery shopping, and become more innovative with recipes. Nothing worked. It only got worse with two kids who have become pickier eaters as they’ve gotten older. (I thought it was supposed to get better as kids matured….) So we tried something completely new–a service that does the shopping, menu planning, and cleanup (Supper
Solutions). Our family goes to a local commercial kitchen to assemble ingredients and get cooking instructions. One hour later, we have 12 meals in baggies, ready for freezing or stacking in the fridge for the week. The commercial kitchen is sunny, air-conditioned, and with plenty of measuring cups and spoons, bowls, spices, and anything else we might need. No one gets upset if you mess up a recipe and have to start over again. You never run out of ingredients. My husband and I split up, working with one son each, and go to different stations to assemble Pecan Chicken or Bourbon Steak. We get free
drinks and snacks while we do our work. No longer is it Mom or Dad’s job to cook. Our kids seem to eat alot more stuff when they have a hand in making the meal. And all this for about the same price as the old way, the hard way. If I sound excited, it’s because I am!
So hooray for radical change! Try it out on something that’s been bugging you for years and tell me what happens.