Since I’ve started my quest to financial independence a few months ago, I’ve mad a few adjustments to my lifestyle. The initial intent was to reduce expenses (as myself and many other FI proponents will tell you countless times: it is much, much easier to reduce your expenses than increase your income), but some of my choices have brought many beneficial side effects.
One of the things I started doing this year is bringing my own lunch to work. This saves me more than $2000 a year, an impressive amount.
But a side effect is that I’m eating much healthier stuff for lunch now. See, I’m a bit lazy, and I’m also in a rush every morning. I don’t really have the time to cook (that’s a white like, I actually don’t take the time to cook), so I end up making the fastest lunch I can every day.
This happens to be a salad. I take a container, put some spring mix in there, quickly slice a tomato into it, add some almonds (good for calories without the bad fat), and then add whatever else I can find in the fridge: sometimes it can be a bit of cheese, pepper bells, leftover chicken, some fruit (apple and grapes go great in a salad!). I add a bit of oil and vinegar, and I’m all set.
Preparing my lunch in the morning literally takes 5 minutes. One interesting side effect, as I mentioned above, is that my lunch is pretty healthy. It’s in general a vegetarian lunch, except for the rare days where I find leftover meat in the fridge. It’s much less heavier on the stomach, and also makes me enjoy the meat at dinner a bit much. I found meat to be much more enjoyable when I only have it once a day.
The other side effect is that I don’t “waste” time looking for food at lunch. Many of my colleagues will end up spending 1h or 1h30 for lunch, half of that being wandering in the streets, looking for an ok restaurant or a food truck.
Don’t get me wrong, I love eating out with colleagues, it’s always a great time, but the “wandering helplessly in the streets” is not the part that I enjoy.
With my saved time, I can choose to go home early in the evening, or spend more time on personal stuff at lunch break, which is something I really enjoy.
My daily “salad lunch” routine is:
- easy and fast to prepare
- giving me more free time at work as I don’t have to look for food
Did I mention I lost 8 pounds since I decided to become financially independent? The salad is one of the reasons, but not the only one (stay tuned for more details 😉 ). It’s sometimes amazing how all these goals and side benefits click into place together. I’m sure I’m not the only one seeing this?