Why the Grocery Store is Painful…

Years ago in crisis training, I learned that one of the most painful parts of any crisis is during the decision making phase. Studies show that we will rush to make a decision, any decision, just to get out of the pain we experience in having to choose.

Because I learned this early on, it was no mystery to me as a newlywed why my chest would tighten the moment the automatic doors slid open as I stepped one foot into a grocery store. The average supermarket has over 30,000 items to choose from! Welcome, Jane, and all who enter, to your decision-making nightmare! The faster I could throw those products into my cart, the better I felt.  Get this over with, and whatever I unload when I get home, well, that’s just what we have to work with.  Over one hundred dollars worth of groceries and still nothing to fix for dinner… hmmm.

Hence began my ongoing aversion to grocery shopping, which continued for many years. Every time I crossed the grocery store threshold my brain instantly splintered, racing in a thousand directions, staring at 30,000 choices while simultaneously trying to do all these things …

  • Fishing in the dredges of my purse for my scribbled grocery list on a battered napkin, which of course, I forgot
  • Trying to visualize my cupboard at home and what items I had, or didn’t have
  • Trying to think up some dinner ideas while staring at the ground beef section
  • Thinking about the meal I signed up for to take to a sick church member and what I could fix for them
  • Being interrupted by my kids oh-so-perfect behavior and never-ending clamor “can we get this or that?”
  • Fumbling with expired coupons in my purse, worried about having enough money at the checkout line
  • Comparing prices and trying to do math in head, unit prices, price per pound, generic vs. store brand…

Someone just tell me what to fix and what to buy!

If this hits a nerve and you can relate, then you have found lots of good company here at E-Mealz. More to say later from the honest journey of a mom-in-decision-making-pain, and what it’s like now on the other side.


Linked to: Homemaking Party, Works for Me Wednesday

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2 thoughts on “Why the Grocery Store is Painful…

  1. Heather E. Sedlock

    I have autism and grocery shopping (well, shopping of any kind) has always been a hassle for me. Also, I have trouble with decision-making skills. Also, too, I hate spending money on food. LOL

    I signed my house up for e-mealz about a month ago after a therapist suggested it to us. You see, I’d do like you and spend hundreds a month on groceries and STILL have no idea what to make for supper. I’d buy extra junk just because I couldn’t decide what I’d need to have on hand. I have over 400 cookbooks in my house that I love to collect and go through to get ideas for dinner–but I can never decide which ones to do!

    For a long time we did operate on a meal plan. I spent hours every Sunday choosing meals (with the input of my two boys and my husband) and making lists (by meal) and so on. THEN I’d take the coupon section and go hunting to see which stores had which items I needed on sale or have a coupon for. While I actually enjoyed the activity (autism-issue), it did waste a lot of time and money because, quite frankly, I wasn’t that good at it.

    Since I hated shopping, I’d resist going to multiple stores to get the best deal. I like going to ONE store. Well, that meant adjusting the meal plan to what that one store had on sale and vs. what my family would eat/try to eat. With children who have autism, they have picky-eater syndrome so it can be rough-going!

    Well, once I started using the meal plans at e-mealz, I saved a HUGE amount of time as it was all done for me. I had a meal plan based on the grocery store I go to the most often. There werel meals that were new to all of us–so the kids were more willing to try something new if mom and dad were trying something new too. And because three out of four of us have weight issues, I chose the low-fat meal plan. My husband has lost 20 lbs! In.a.month! My oldest son has lost 10 lbs. I have lost five. Isn’t that always the way for women?

    And the money saved! I’d buy things at the store just to buy SOMETHING to get out of there. Well those things were wasting away on my shelves because I never knew what to do with them or the kids weren’t willing to eat them. So, I donated them and started fresh using the e-mealz. No more wasted food! And because all the meals are based on sale-priced items, I’m saving over $100/wk on groceries. The kids like that because that means more money for toys! 🙂

    I just wanted to thank everyone at e-mealz.. from the idea maker to the people who keep it up and running and sharing on the blog. It’s truly a life-saver for me 🙂

    1. Heather Brown

      Wow, Heather, thanks so much for sharing! Stories like yours inspire us and we always love hearing fantastic results like your family has had. Keep enjoying your E-Mealz plan.

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