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Busted! I had this in my shopping cart.


Do you go grocery shopping with your kids?

It’s something I  try to avoid at all costs, but it happens.

And when it does, I do everything in my power to get in and out QUICK!  That means I  give into things that I normally wouldn’t do.  Such as promising ice cream at the Whole Foods if they would stop the wrestling/fighting thing they do.  (Luckily the stand was closed that day!)

I always see someone I know when I go grocery shopping.  And I really enjoy that, especially as an on-line coach, I crave the face-to-face interaction.  Most likely I see my clients which makes it even more fun to shop.

With my kids in tow the other day, I saw a Renewal detox client at Whole Foods.   We hugged and hung out a bit, chatting about life.

Well, I forgot about the Annie’s Mac and Cheese box sitting on top of my cart.

The kids threw it in there while I was trying to get out of the store before they killed each other.   I  was like “Whatever, ok, as long as you are quiet!”

I was so distracted by the Annie’s box, hoping my client wouldn’t see.

Should I cover it up with all the kale and beets?  Or come clean?

I called myself out. Yep, I got processed foods!

We both laughed and compared notes on all the crazy foods we buy when either not paying attention or want a quick fix.

I have to be honest, though.  As a health coach, it’s sometimes a struggle not feel the need to be perfect.  Am I expected to eat kale chips and quinoa everyday?  I used to think so.

Even though I stress incorporating  the 80/20 guideline (80% eat and live clean and the other 20%, let go and have that birthday cake or glass a wine with friends) to my clients , I was so hard on myself.    I told my clients to be gentle with themselves, but I would totally rip myself to shreds if I did one unhealthy thing.  That was no way to live life.

Here’s the thing, I realized being perfect gets me in a lot of trouble. I lose myself; what I really stand for.


“As long as we try to transcend ourselves, reach for the sky, pull away from the ground and into spirit, we are heroes carved in stone…Don’t try to transform yourself.  Move into yourself.  Move into your human unsuccess. Perfection rapes the soul.”

~Marion Woodman

Do you, too, feel sometimes that you have to be perfect as you move more and more towards your clean lifestyle?  In order to live a “clean” life (and of course that doesn’t mean you can’t drink wine or curse), you need to watch out for that perfectionism trap.

I’m so grateful to do the work I do. It keeps me walking the talk, and it also reminds me to forgive myself and that the 80/20 guideline really works.

So yeah, sometimes  Annie’s will pop into the cart.  It’s all good because I know that the kale and beets are there, too.  80/20, baby!

Does my story resonate with you?   What is one way you walk the talk during your clean living journey?

Share your thoughts in the comments.


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10 Responses to Busted! I had this in my shopping cart.

Tanya Wilson

I think to expect perfection from anyone is a far cry. Occasional treats are bound to happen (and IMO are ok) and so be it if thats a box of Annie’s Mac and Cheese. I can find far worse things on a shelf. 😉

    Lisa Consiglio Ryan

    Agreed, Tanya! I wanted to bring this out to the open because there is talk of, “Is this bad?” OR “I fell off the wagon.” Which for every diet, we all know they don’t work. So even for moving towards the clean eating and living, it might be a hard transition if there is an all or nothing feeling. You are so right on!


Oh my God, I TOTALLY relate to this!! Thank-you for writing this post, Lisa! I agree that doing this kind of work keeps me walking the walk. I love that I am talking and thinking about my health all day long. But – YES – it’s a struggle sometimes not to fall into the ‘perfect’ trap. I never preach ‘perfection’ to my clients (I actually don’t think I ‘preach’ at all!) – but I know that I try to keep a high standard for myself, especially when I feel like people might be watching. I don’t want to seem like I don’t follow my own advice, ya know? But, of course, I DO follow my own advice – I had wine and a brownie yesterday for goodness sake (although it was a black bean sweet potato brownie…) – and there has to be room for flexibility and indulgences. I always say that life is too short to skip dessert if you really, really, really want it. 80/20 WORKS. And if someone bumps into you in a ’20’ moment – so be it. We’re human! Besides, ‘perfect’ is really stressful anyway……

    Lisa Consiglio Ryan

    Nicole! I knew you would! I get what you are saying about not wanting others to feel like I’m not following my own advice…this is so awesome though because I can really tap into my body and do what feels good. Walk the talk! Oh, hunny! I love this…you are so so completely right, “80/20 works…and if someone bumps into you in a 20 moment, so be it.” This is something we all can go by to lead a happy and healthy life. Beautiful! xx


Here’s the thing, while many of us “think” we want perfection — from ourselves, from our loved ones, from our mentors — if we actually experienced perfection, we wouldn’t really be satisfied. Human nature is such that seeing someone else being perfect makes us unhappy with ourselves and then we tend to cast that other “perfect” being into a negative light.

On the other hand, if we were to attain what we perceive as perfection for ourselves, we would immediately set a new, higher level of perfection to attain, thereby keeping ourselves in a constant state of discontent with our failures.

So, perfection just isn’t where it’s at!

Besides, you’re the health coach, not your kids and I’ll bet $100 the mac & cheese isn’t something that you eat!

    Lisa Consiglio Ryan

    Sheila, so so very true! Watching someone else you think is perfect is so damaging. It can make us resentful. AND puts the other person in a “negative” light as you mention. Very insightful! Also, I like that you mention how perfection is like a never ending road where one will never be satisfied. It can be a sad and lonely life. Love you to pieces!
    PS. You are right on the Annies, but I sure LOVE Back to Nature Mac and Cheese!


Great post! Yes, your words hit home with me. I am on my own health journey (as we all are) and am working towards helping others live a healthful life as well. At times I feel hypocritical when I choose to eat/drink something that I know won’t fuel my body. But, then I remember that love is the answer, not judgement. And I make sure that if I’m going to partake in something that won’t fuel my body then I make sure that it fuels my soul. 🙂 Sometimes, Annies’s mac and cheese does just that! Thank you for sharing!

    Lisa Consiglio Ryan

    Thanks, Jen, for your thoughts…so true. It took me awhile to let go of my own judging (no one even cares to begin with and don’t judge me anyway!) and to treat myself with love like I do for others. Chocolate and champagne sure feel my soul, and I will totally dig in if I want. Keep me posted on your health journey and how you are changing lives. Love it!


Hi Lisa; I’ve been enjoying your work and content for awhile now, thanks for all you do.
This is great and yes I’ve felt that same need to adhere to the clean eating way of life all the time as a consultant. We need to be as gentle with ourselves as we urge clients to be with themselves and remember the bigger picture. (and your thought process on shopping echos mine with my children, love it)

    Lisa Consiglio Ryan

    Amber, why thank you so much! That makes me so happy. I wholeheartedly agree with you, 100%; being gentle with ourselves is another way of walking the talk. Hugs to you!

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