Step # 4 High Yield
How much more will you likely spend if you shop hungry rather
than on a full stomach?
A. 8% more
B. 10% more
C. 13 % more
D. 15% more
Studies show that people spend about 10% more if they shop on
an empty stomach compared to a full one.
This chapter deals with two fundamental
ideas of control, which form the foundation for shopping.
1. You can�t control what happens around you, but you can
control how you choose to respond.
2. You must be in control of yourself before you can control
Control Point #1 You can�t control what happens around you,
but you can control how you choose to respond
The truth is obvious. The only thing you can control is
yourself. But energy spent worrying about what is outside of
your control takes away from the energy needed to focus on your
shopping. Shopping is hard enough that way it is. Don�t play
it with part of your brain tied behind your back. You cannot
control: the store prices, the product availability, family
members getting the cold or flu,
When I began to design The Smart Shopping Cart: 8 Steps to
Grocery Savings, I had to say to myself, �self.� What do I
first need to do when putting a plan together? I can hear my
mother tell me before you make out your weekly menu, what is
Wow, what a relief. Easy, I�ll design an easy weekly
planner? Then I know what everyone is doing. That makes putting
a menu plan a whole lot easier when I know who will be home for
dinner. It only takes me about 10 to 15 minutes each week to do
my weekly planner. Why not?
The first step is to think about the week ahead. It does not
matter which day you consider the beginning of the week, I
happen to use Monday. Use the day you do your main weekly
grocery shopping as a starting point. I happen to like to shop
early Sunday morning when there are few people at the grocery
Fill in your family's planned weekly activities. Have fun and
be creative. Use your own shorthand, color-coding or symbols.
Makes it easy for you to picture how the week will be filled.
Below is a sample of a blank weekly planner.
Now I fill in a column listing all the meals I will need to
cook for the week.
The first time I did this it looked like a lot of cooking,
until I considered that most households have their own routine.
In my case, �The Usual� breakfast and lunches refer to the
kid's cereal, juice, sandwiches, chips, and soda as well as the
parent's coffee, breakfast bars, wheat toast, juice and fruit.
(In my example, the Cliff and Connie do not take their lunch to
work.) I want you to consider your own house, fill in the easy
meals first and then go on to the ones that require more
Now I like to start filling out my menu and grocery list. I
start my list with the items I�ll need for those easy, routine
meals. Most of you already to do this level of planning, so this
should be easy. Be sure to look in your kitchen to see what's
needed to fill in the gaps for next week. Don't forget the
little details like butter, jam, mustard, mayo, milk, etc. Since
these meals rarely change much you can feel confident stocking
up on the non-perishable items from this basic list.
Dinners are the last step. This is where you can get more
creative! Use your cookbooks, magazines, friends suggestions, a
great web site like AlansKitchen.com, or family favorites when
deciding on your menus. Pay attention to the time available to
prepare each meal, the time needed to complete each recipe, and
the skills of the person who will be doing the cooking.
In my example, the two one-spouse dinners, you may need them
to be easy or partially store bought to fit the time available.
Also if the stay home adult is not the regular cook of the
house, they need the meals easy to make. You can range arrange
them meals from Boboli Pizza with a packaged salad to Dominoes
delivered! Knowing ahead of time that you will need a purchased
meal makes it much easier to deal with. It's no longer a meal to
settle with, it's a relaxing break to look forward to!
In the weeknight dinners for four, you must consider time
constraints. If dinnertime is 7 p.m. and the cook gets home at 6
p.m., there isn't much time for long cooking times or fancy
preparation, unless a spouse or children can lend a hand. But
30-minute menus can be creative too! Think pasta, whole meal
salads, easy casseroles, steaks and chops that cook quickly,
stir-fry, crock-pot meal, etc.
However, the weekend offers us more time for food
preparation. The romantic dinner for two in our example is the
perfect opportunity for trying out a new recipe, slow roasting a
large meal, flexing your baking skills, or experimenting with an
exotic ingredient that the children may not tolerate or
appreciate. You may choose to cook large portions of casserole
type foods for freezing, saving you even more time and energy
for the next week!
After choosing your menus for the week, be sure you've listed
all the needed ingredients on your grocery list. Keep your
weekly plan and grocery list with you for reference when you go
shopping. After shopping post it for the family each week, so
everyone knows what to expect. You might consider soliciting the
spouse or children's help in making the choices. Kids know what
they like, why not let them help out by giving them each one
night a week to choose a meal (with your nutritional editing of
Control Point # 2 � You Must Be in Control of Yourself
Before You Can Control Your Grocery Shopping
Whey you�re �in control of yourself� you are composed,
thinking clearly and confidently, and aware what is happening
both inside and outside of you. You are �free� to trust
yourself and allow your natural abilities and skills to shine.
When you go to the grocery store you don�t want your mind
cluttered and with everything moving fast-forward.
You menu planner is your confidence builder. It allows you to
prepare your meals simply and easily. It allows you to shop
smart and wise. It allows you to save money.
Go to Step 5
Page 1 of