If you are comedy fan, you may remember the Nudge-Nudge, Wink-Wink sketch made famous in the 1970’s by Monty Python.
More recently “Nudge Theory” has emerged as a term to describe a part of what Behavioral Economists call Choice Architecture and the subject of Thaler and Sunstein’s 2008 book Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth and Happiness.
In 2010, so inspired by this concept of small easy changes, the British Government unrolled the Behavior Insights Team, commonly referred to as the “Ministry of Nudges,” to consider what public policies, initiatives and recommendations could be made to encourage public compliance with financial, safety and health advice and laws.
Nudge Theory is a real thing.
The premise? That humans frequently make choices that are at odds with their long term goals, because they seem to require less effort.
How best to design our surroundings to help stay focused on the goals we are struggling to reach?
Aspiring Vegetarians and Vegans often report that in a marketplace and culture that makes animal products cheap and ubiquitous, choosing plant-based foods consistently can seem more difficult and require more planning.
Vegan decision-fatigue can be a real source of discouragement especially in the beginning.
In my experience, just knowing that decision-fatigue can be an obstacle in beginning a plant based lifestyle, is a significant help.
You’re not weak.
You’re not thoughtless.
You’re not lacking in motivation.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with you – you’re just new at this.
For years or decades, your automatic choices have presumably included meat and dairy
in your recipes,
your menu choices,
In your celebrations.
Through Vedge Your Best coaching you will move towards the plant based goals of your choosing by understanding your personal obstacles.
You don’t need an iron will or a private chef or to live on an ashram. You certainly do not need to worry ever again about being “perfect.”
Vedge Your Best coaching will help you set up small strategies in your environment and your lifestyle to support the food choices you want to increase and minimize the choices you want to decrease.
Designing your day, your activities, and surroundings “nudge by nudge” will bolster your energy and avoid “decision-fatigue.” Most importantly, coaching will teach you how to consistently honor any commitments you make with yourself – arguably the most important skill any of us can learn.
So start today by noticing what animal products you think are easiest to avoid and which are most difficult.
Think about what reasons you have for changing your choices.
-Give yourself permission to make this an opportunity to learn a lot more about yourself and how you want to show up in the world. This is not a competition.
-Look at restaurant menus or call ahead to ask what plant based options are available so you don’t have to have an awkward conversation with a server who may not know how you define vegetarian.
-While shopping start by stocking up on some the fruits, vegetables, grains and beans that you already know you like and have them on hand for those moments you don’t have energy and focus.
-Experiment with just one or two new plant based ingredients per week. There is no rush.
-Make moving toward a vegan lifestyle a chance to learn and grow – not to fail or beat yourself up.
-Trust that the process to reduce or eliminate animal products can be simple.
If you want more nudges or help in designing the architecture for your veg friendly choices, email firstname.lastname@example.org to set up a time for a free consultation.
Nudge, Nudge, Think Think – you’ve got this.