This morning I was reflecting on how to reach more people to help them understand that a bunch of small changes can add up to great big good things for their health. At that moment I was making a breakfast smoothie for Ryan, pouring my newly-found and much appreciated Trader Joes coconut milk into the blender, and I was hit over the head with how hard change can be, even for my family. I was shocked!

It took me about three months to change coconut milk brands. Three months of avoiding the simplest change. [Insert eye roll and David Bowie’s “Changes.”]

A friend had told me several times that I needed to switch to Trader Joes coconut milk (I pass by Trader Joes every week, so getting there was no problem) because it was:

  • additive-free
  • in a BPA-free can
  • organic
  • AND it cost half the price of the coconut milk I was using.

I know that these three months of change avoidance are small and silly, but if I can’t switch my coconut milk brand to make an improvement, how hard is it for other people to make more radical small changes, like giving up soda or bread or chips? I have been on this health journey for almost 10 years, yet it took me three months to make an easy and beneficial switch that led to even more cost savings because Trader Joes has other foods that I purchase for a cheaper price. I have broken through all kinds of barriers, had all kinds of personal growth and success, and that little coconut milk change was hard.

Why didn’t I make the change? Why were some of the changes my family made over the last 10 years really hard and why did we put them off? Why might you or a loved one not make a small little change to help your health? I am sure there are many reasons, and here are a few mine:

  1. My life is really busy, and learning about food and spending more time cooking it requires more time. (TRUE! But so worth it.)
  2. The fact that what we eat affects our health at the most basic level was not part of my reality (TRUE! Most Americans are sick because of what they eat.)
  3. Doctors have a pill to fix us quickly (NOT TRUE in most cases!)
  4. We can’t affordably eat healthy food (NOT TRUE!)
  5. I like routine. (TRUE!)

I have no doubt you could add to this list.

So what caused my family to break out of our routine and choose to reclaim our health? Colson, our now 13 year old son. We will do anything for him, and when faced with a serious health challenge, we were not going to accept that he would be sick and we would be scared for life. If you have a child with a health challenge, you know that dark, gnawing feeling that stays with you deep in your stomach and sometimes makes your heart flutter. It is horrible and it never stops as long you’re your son or daughter is sick. We changed to help Colson and to get rid of that awful feeling. The fact that Ryan and I got better along the way was the added bonus.

Colson and I are on a mission to show people that with a bunch of small changes most people can get better. So many people have been sick for so long that they don’t remember what it is like to feel well, but when it happens it is one of the greatest gifts you will experience. It is one of the greatest gifts you can give your family. My family has lived it and continues to excel. We know it is true.

The latest video game, new piece of furniture, new jeans, new whatever, is meaningless compared to feeling well.

What one step are you willing to take today? Join us!

You can purchase our eLearning program, Small and Powerful Steps to Wellness, for $15 (10% goes to InterFaith Food Shuttle to help kids who don’t have enough food). I know it sounds like there can’t be much to this program for only $15, but it is packed full of tips and strategies to help you and your family excel, and we want to reach as many people as possible. We have condensed eight years of our learning and some of the latest medical research into a few hours in our self-paced, multimedia eLearning.

You can also follow along on Facebook, watch and subscribe to our YouTube channel or sign up for our newsletter by emailing Laura@kidslivinglonger.com.