7 Ways to a Life of Quality over Quantity
Ah, it’s Monday, back to the daily rise and grind. We had a crazy weekend and somehow managed to miss the snow-mageddon-pocolypse-JonasBrothers-Blizzard of 2016. I hope all of you out there that were affected by the snowstorm have stayed safe and sane through it all, Mother Nature sure can be ruthless.
This weekend, we took a quick (< 8 hour) adventure to New York City on Friday afternoon/evening to see my parents who were there for my dad’s work. We were lucky enough to see On Your Feet a Broadway musical all about the life and career of Emilio and Gloria Estefan and while we had no expectations going in we were blown away. Before the show we grabbed a bite to eat knowing we wouldn’t eat probably until Saturday morning (as we had a long drive after the show ahead of us) at Maloney & Porcelli and it was phenomenal. We ordered a side of bacon to share thinking that it would just be regular ol’ bacon and boy were we wrong! We ended up getting 2 slabs of bacon (one of which we saved to eat when we got back to Albany) along with our delicious meals. (Go check out the beauty on my instagram here).
Once the show was over we headed home and then took the weekend to snowboard because we have a big trip to Montana coming up and we need to get in snowboarding shape (the altitude is going to be no joke.) Vermont sure could use some of that snow the mid-Atlantic got this weekend but I am happy on the hill no matter what the conditions. Anyone ever been to Big Sky, Montana? If so I would love any and all recommendations!
Alright, enough about me, today I want to focus on a topic that I could talk about daily and probably already have bored you with up until this point. The topic is all about how I value quality over quantity in all areas of my life. Many times we focus on more, more, more and forget that sometimes we need less in order to get more out of the situation, experience or human being. This day and age people want to boast on social media about what they did this weekend or how many friends they are with or how many likes they got on one post but most of the time we are left feeling empty even though we have so much. I can say the days I spend off social media and with a few special people doing nothing (or something like snowboarding, hiking, etc. ) are my favorite of days.
This concept can apply to all areas of your life but first let’s differentiate what I mean when I talk about quality over quantity.
What is quality?
Quality is a high level of value that can be placed on anything. It is a feature or a characteristic that someone or something has. Quality can be good or bad. It is more subjective. It is not easily measured.
What is quantity?
Quantity is the amount or number of something. It is an objective measure. It can easily be measured.
As you can see the two vary greatly yet both are necessary when discussing things that we value (or even things that we do not) in our lives. It is easier to focus on quantity like dollars, calories, weight, etc. as it is objective and clear cut. It is much harder to focus on quality as this means something far different for each and every one of us, which is why I think it is so important.
Why do I focus on quality over quantity?
I focus on quality for many reasons. First my parents instilled this belief in me as a young child so I would have to say I am a bit biased. They always taught me that with friends you could have a lot of friends that knew a little about you and were able to say you had a lot of “best friends” or you could have a few friends that knew you inside and out and had your back no matter what and were your true “best” friends. They also taught me the same thing about grades, sports, material things, food and much more. They always told me to enjoy and be thankful for what I had and not to be upset over what I did not. That to me, is focusing on the quality of life. Let’s take a few examples.
Many people may think that the more friends you have the more popular you are, the more well liked you are and therefor the better person that you are. While I am not saying having a lot of friends and acquaintances is a bad thing, because it’s not, I think that quality should come first. Imagine having 100 friends and no one to call when the world comes crumbling down because you do not want people to see you at your worst? Sure you have a ton of friends in the light but what about in the dark? A good friend sees your flaws and loves you for them anyway. Find your core group of people and hold on to them for dear life, spend more time on them and less time worrying about who will like your latest photo on Facebook.
Ah, one near and dear to my heart. So many times people want to focus on calories and macros, that is OKAY for the short term for SOME people. This quantity approach, however, leaves out all the ins and outs that are your daily life. No two days are the same. Sure you can eat pop tarts and cinnamon toast crunch and have it fall into your calories and macros and still lose weight but what about the quality of the food you are putting into your body and the quality of years you will have left due to your actions as it relates to food.
This can go the opposite way too. If you are someone that must count every last calorie and never enjoy something decadent, where is the joy in life? I’m not saying you should eat chocolate cake every day, but once in a while on birthdays and holidays you should indulge without feeling guilt. Don’t eat the entire cake, have a slice, really freakin’ enjoy it and move forward. Those 100 calorie packs will never love you back, I promise.
It’s not the amount of hours you spend doing exercise, activities, etc. it’s how much you get out of those hours of activities that matter. Sure you can exercise every day but you will eventually run yourself into the ground, you are not immune from your adrenal function. Instead keep your life varied and do things that make you healthy AND happy. Hate exercising? Then find something that makes you happy that keeps you moving. Hate cleaning? Hire a cleaning lady and spend that time doing something else you value (or work your butt off so you can afford that cleaning lady! #lifegoals)
You do not need more gadgets and gizmos, but you do need one or two things that make your life easier and more fulfilling. Maybe for you it’s a notebook you can scribble notes into, for others it’s an iPad, for others it’s a treadmill. Whatever it is for you, just don’t think you will find life’s meaning at the end of a material possession. Also, remember that different things are of different values to everyone else, don’t judge someone for what they value, lookout your own plate and make sure you focus on YOUR QUALITY.
How you can focus on quality over quantity?
Show Gratitude Daily. This one is one of my favorites. I have so many clients that are stressed out that they forget what life is all about, the little things. When I talk to a room full of people about a real food lifestyle I always ask them to think of something they are grateful for, sure enough every time I do, they all smile to themselves. It may be a little selfish of me but it brings a smile to my face to see how grateful people are even when they show a stressed out exterior. Showing gratitude daily will show you how much you already have and how lucky you are, even when things are not going so well. Write it in a journal or spend some time in quiet thinking it through, you’ll be glad you did.
Purge What You Don’t Need. This goes for every aspect of your life: clothes, food, gadgets, people (be gentle here), Facebook friends, etc. We hold on to things everday thinking they will make us happy but they most likely will not. If you have not worn that dress in 10 years, give it up and donate it! You will feel much better. Have a friend that brings you down and makes you feel like crap? Find a way to move on from that relationship, chances are they feel the same way. Purging what you do not need will leave you more time for the quality of things, people and relationships that you do want. That sounds much more appealing to me!
Choose to make a difference in 1 person’s life. While we all want to be superman or woman, we are only one person and can only do so much. By choosing to make a difference in one person’s life we can give them our quality time and effort and this will trickle down the line to others. If we try to focus on making a difference in everyone’s life we are sure to fall flat. Think of the reward you got when you helped someone improve in some area of their life, it’s a priceless feeling.
Listen more. We tend to talk when we are happy, sad, nervous or excited and we forget to listen. It’s amazing what happens when you take the time to listen to what others are saying, and chances are they might even listen back, what a novel idea! Listening can clue you in to what you value as far as quality goes, so listen up next time.
Stop trying to please everyone. This is a biggie. We spend so much time trying to please others that we end up running ourselves ragged and we end up pleasing no one. What’s that quote? If you stand for everything you will fall for anything? Something along those lines. It’s the truth. Sure you may think it’s easier to please everyone, but life’s too short and frankly not that easy. Be who you are, focus on the quality relationships and stop worrying about the large quantity of people you cannot please, they will always be there.
Chew Slowly. Had to throw a food one in there. We forget to really enjoy our food that we end up wanting more to get the same high. I urge you to really chew your food, like 20 times, each bite and put your utensils down in between those bites. Chewing slowly will let you enjoy the quality of the food without needing excess. If you are eating quality ingredients your body will be pleasantly surprised and you’ll allow your brain to ketchup (errr I mean, catch up) with your stomach.
Savor the moment. We try to do so much at once to prove we are great multitaskers, myself included. We watch TV, while having a conversation with a loved one, while texting a friend, while reading a magazine while cleaning the house. We end up doing a poor quality job on all the things and feel less than fulfilled. Savor each moment and be present whenever you can. Sure, somethings may fall through the cracks, but that’s life.
Alright, now I want you to start focusing on the quality in your life and see how the quantity falls into place.
Do you agree that we should focus on quality over quantity? If so what do you want to start focusing on as far as quality over quantity in your life this week? Share in the comments!
Have a great week!