When you become a single mother, you inherit a great deal of added responsibility and it can be overwhelming to try and manage, especially in the first few months. During this time, it can be easy to resort to ordering takeaway in place of cooking a healthy home dinner, and we wouldn’t blame you for giving in now and then!
Eating junk food on a regular basis (god forbid every night) is obviously bad news for both your health and your wallet. While you can always try to save money on groceries, takeaway always seems to be ridiculously cheap when compared with the time and effort home cooking requires.
Luckily, avoiding the convenient take away option is easier than you think when you practice a few simple tricks.
Let’s take a look at 3 easy hacks you can use to resist those takeout temptations.
How to say no to a takeaway dinner temptation
Switch to a meal-kit delivery service
Meal-kit services have become very popular over the last few years and it’s not hard to see why. They combine the convenience of ordering in with the fun of preparing your own healthy and nutritious meals.
How do they work? They’re really quite brilliant in their simplicity. You get a weekly set of pre-portioned ingredients and recipe cards sent to your door. You can then easily cook delicious and healthy meals without all of the boring measuring and portioning.
This helps to eliminate stress that comes with decision making in the grocery isle about what to buy and how much. All you need to do is select the kinds of dishes you want to have delivered and wait for the kit to arrive.
A meal-kit service is incredibly convenient for single mums who want to maintain a healthy diet but don’t have the same mental and physical energy to do all the meal preparation themselves.
Many single mums will find home cooking overwhelming simply because of how many choices they have to consider regarding ingredients and portioning. Mums who want to simplify this aspect of their life could benefit from checking out the pre-portioned and easy-to-cook recipes from HelloFresh.
Develop a meal plan
Planning your meals ahead of time is one of the most effective ways to avoid ordering takeaway every night. Human beings are wired such that if we make a plan to do something, we are far more likely to stick to it.
By making a physical list of the meals you plan to have, you are training your mind to accept those choices ahead of time. This means that on your way home from work you’re far less likely to start fantasising about take away options because you already have a plan for what you’re going to eat.
While sticking to a meal plan 100% of the time will be impossible when you first start, eventually you will train your mind to think about food differently and in turn make smarter food choices.
Set a ‘takeaway budget’
If you’re really struggling to nurture your willpower to avoid eating takeout, try setting financial boundaries for yourself so that you are forced to limit your poor choices. For example, you could create a budget for takeaway that’s only $30 a week.
While you could argue that enforcing your own rules is just another form of willpower, it’s a great psychological trick to get us to adopt healthy habits. The idea here is that after a while you won’t even be aware of having a takeaway budget because you’ll have trained yourself not to rely on those poor choices anymore.
At the end of the day, refusing takeout is going to come down to your ability to ‘just say no’. While it may prove challenging at first, you and your kids will ultimately be better off for having divorced yourselves from the terrible temptation of takeaway.