Have you been settling for less, expecting to get only the barest of essentials, thinking that your needs aren’t as important as everyone else’s? Lots of women, especially moms fall into this trap.

Mom-Priority A lot of moms wind up settling in their lives because they just don’t feel that their needs are as important as everyone else’s.

In my seminars, I often speak about the 6 main causes of weight issues. Body Shame is a biggie. Another on the list is Poor Nurturing.

Where do you fit on your own list of priorities? If you’re a mom, I’ll bet that you’re crazy busy and it often seems like you don’t have a moment to breathe.

As a working mother myself, I spent nearly 20 years running a business trying to juggle my babies on my hips while managing real estate.

It doesn’t matter whether you’re a mom or not, if you have a tendency to push yourself aside, and make everyone else’s needs more important than your own, you’ll often notice that you’re seeking out food to comfort.

Here’s an example of a gal whose people pleasing ways were creating a lot of pain for herself and others. See if you can relate :

Several years ago I had a job working as a sales associate at the plus size women’s retail store, Avenue. One day a woman came in all rattled and upset. She explained that her husband and son were waiting in the car, and she couldn’t really spend any time shopping, because… in her own words, she, “just had to get the bare necessities.”

She came in to pick up a couple of pair of slacks that she had on hold and as she stood at the counter waiting for her purchase to be rung up, she realized she also needed a pair of beige panty hose for an upcoming evening affair. When I mentioned to her that the hose were on sale, (“Buy 3, and get one free, or buy 6, and get 3 free”) she quickly flew back to the racks to collect several more.

When she returned to the sales counter, she told me that she had decided on getting 8 more pairs and explained why she wanted them. As she stood fidgeting by the counter, she told me how frustrating it is for her to find that every time she buys panty hose she’s usually in such a rush to get them on, because she always feels that she’s under so much pressure to get ready, that she inevitably always gets a run in the first pair, has to toss them out, and ends up having to wear the second pair she buys.

As she told me this story, her husband and son came in, looking very upset. You could cut the tension with a knife. She turned to me and whispered, “I know they’re pretty grouchy. They hate being kept waiting. I’m ignoring them.”

As the purchases were being rung up, she proceeded to second guess herself and ask her husband for his advice on whether she “needed” each item.

After what seemed like a grueling eternity, the sale was finally complete. She ended up with much less than she wanted, if only to keep the peace. Can you relate to this gal’s plight? I sure can.

Being married for almost 25 years, I’ve learned what to do and what not to do to nurture myself while still keeping the peace in my family. Like this gal, for years I used to try to accommodate every one’s schedule and I would just squeeze my needs in edgewise.

If we were running out to the movies, or out to dinner, I would ask to make a quick stop to purchase something on the run. I never felt like there was enough time. I felt rushed, anxious and angry. The consequence of that was always the same; family arguments, resentment and frustration, which usually left me staring into the bottom of another container of Ben & Jerry’s Mint Oreo Cookie ice cream.

Today I know to avoid that irritating situation because I realize that by trying to please everyone, I was creating misery for the entire family. Now I go clothes shopping without the fam, making it clear to everyone, including me that my needs are important and they won’t be squeezed to accomodate anyone’s schedule ever again. Unlike before, now I make it abundantly clear to my family that I’m important too.

Here are a few suggestions from my book, “Lovin’ the Skin You’re In” to help you reclaim your space on your priority list:

Say “No” – The next time someone asks you to give of your time and efforts, tell them that you will get back to them after you’ve gotten a chance to think about it. Then when you are more relaxed, at your own pace say, “No.”

Make a choice – Evaluate how you spend your time and decide what activities can be cut or delegated.

“It’s not personal” – Repeat this mantra daily. “It’s not personal” Realize that you have more power than you think as long as you keep a cool head and stay reasonable. Make requests, not demands – Rather than giving into your exhaustion and frustration and resorting to nagging, shouting or emotional blackmail to get things done by others, wait until you are calm and more relaxed to have a quiet conversation stating what you need and how you want to be supported.

Say “I’m worth it” – Look in the mirror when you’re alone and tell yourself that you deserve more and better.

The bottom line is that being assertive and letting people know what you need and asking for it without apology is a powerful skill that you must acquire in order to get control of your emotional eating.

Want to reclaim your power, but don’t know where to start? Take a leap and invest in yourself by registering for my upcoming seminar called, “Tap into the Power of Self-Acceptance.”

Have you ever paid $5 for a pint of raspberries only to toss them out because they were all fuzzy and moldy? Has that ever happened to you before you even got home? Let me share a berry saving tip with you that I learned today.


Don’t you just love berries? Ooh me too. Strawberries, blueberries, huckleberries, cranberries, boysenberries, and who could forget raspberries? Berries are fabulously delicious. You can enjoy them in shakes, smoothies, add them to cereal, oatmeal or bake them up into a pie or just grab a handful and have them as a quick snack. But the problem with berries is that they’re amazingly delicate especially raspberries. That’s why you have to use them quickly or find a way to preserve them.

Andrea’s Juicy Berry Memory

Gosh! I love berries. They hold such happy memories for me. I remember years ago when I was in my mid-twenties, I used to help my Nana prepare homemade jams for the church bazaar. At different times during the year, we’d go out and pick buckets of strawberries, blueberries and raspberries. Once we got back to her kitchen we would carefully wash and sort all the berries and begin the process of making them into jam. It took hours but the time spent alone with my Nana was magical. But everything had to be done so quickly because berries have an extremely short shelf life.

Have you ever paid $5 for a pint of raspberries only to toss them out because they were all fuzzy and moldy? Has that ever happened to you before you even got home?

There’s nothing more heartbreaking than to open your fridge at breakfast time, expecting to whip up some fabulous blueberry pancakes or homemade muffins and you go to reach for your berries and they have a nasty white mold on their insides.

Ok let me tell you how to avoid that problem so that you can keep your berries berry fresh.

A Berry Nice Berry Tip: Wash your berries with vinegar. 

If you want to preserve your berries and extend their freshness, you will want to wash them in a vinegar and water solution. White or apple cider vinegar is best.

The vinegar kills any mold spores and other bacteria that might be on the surface of the fruit. As a result of washing them in the berry saving solution, your raspberries can last up to a week in the fridge and your strawberries can go almost 2 weeks without getting moldy and soft.

Here’s the instructions for the Berry Saving Solution:

In a bowl, mix up a solution of vinegar and water that is one part vinegar to 10 parts water. So as an example –that would be ½ cup vinegar to 5 cups of water. Now add the berries to the solution and swirl them around gently with your hand to clean them, releasing any dirt or impurities.

Then follow by draining the berries and in the case of strawberries, remove the hull which is the green cap or stem. You don’t have to rinse any of your berries because the vinegar solution is so diluted you won’t be able to taste the vinegar. But if you prefer, then rinse your berries. Now pop them in the fridge.

Freezing Your Berries

If you’d like to try extending their freshness even more, put them in a green bag, releasing the excess air and close the bag and seal it by just gathering the top of the bag and twisting it gently and placing the berries in the fridge.

Also you can freeze any of your berries and also depitted cherries for up to several months. And you can bet your fruit will taste so much better than the frozen packs that you’d get at the store.

So go ahead and stock up on those yummy bits of juicy goodness and know that they will be fresh for as long as it takes for you to eat them.

Andrea Amador, The Juicy Woman, blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, preserve berries, eat, food, diet