How I Get in the Kitchen When I Don’t Want to be in the Kitchen

How I Get in the Kitchen When I Don’t Want to be in the Kitchen

My Trick – Set the Microwave Timer for Just 20 Minutes

Spending time in the kitchen can be a lot like trying to be more active.

It’s really hard to get started some days but once I do it’s really hard to stop. Last Sunday was one of those days. It had been a long week of work topped with a birthday on Saturday which left my house completely neglected.  So Sunday was my day to clean.  It was my long over-due ‘house day’ – those days that become therapeutic when I can get up to my elbows in projects and tinkering. As my projects in every part of the house, except the kitchen, came to a close at  7:30 pm, it was time to face how far behind I had also gotten in the kitchen that week. What I had to do next? Set my microwave timer for 20 minutes.

I know that I can always muster at least 20 minutes in the kitchen, even if it is hard to get started. The trick that helps me take those first steps is to set my microwave timer for 20 minutes. Then, most importantly, I give myself permission to stop if at the end of 20 minutes I just don’t feel like doing anything else.  The goal is forward progress, not perfection.

Here is the forward progress I made in my 20 minutes Sunday night:

  • Had an unexciting start by unloading and loading the dishwasher (always good to have that done for the morning).
  • Onto finally putting away the bag of on-sale kitchen gadgets that had been sitting on my kitchen table since I bought them a couple of weeks ago.
  • Still not very inspired but moved to sorting my fridge in prep for the week which led me to see oranges I should use so I made a whole foods fresh juice for tomorrow’s breakfast in my Vitamix with oranges, apples, ginger, and beetroot.
  • And then it happened… like it always does.  Putting those incredible (medicinal) ingredients together, which will be used to nourish my family, turns on this switch in me that allows me to feel the value in that kitchen time; its purpose.

Staying organized, cleaning, planning, and prepping – is all for that moment.  Getting in the kitchen helps prepare the stage that allows us to consistently put whole, real, healing foods together.  That’s the goal; that’s the purpose of choosing to spend time in the kitchen.

My 20 minutes turned into an hour and a half in the kitchen that night – just tinkering about. Doing all sorts of little things that help set my own stage.  It doesn’t always lead to more time, often it doesn’t, but Sunday it did. Setting the microwave timer for 20 minutes is the trick that gets me in the kitchen when I don’t want to be in the kitchen – but it’s feeling that moment of purpose that keeps me there. Warmly, Teri Rose, CARE Nutritionist


  1. Crave

    Love your writing as always. So relatable. The timer is a good tool to get the action going and reach the real purpose of it all. I struggle to feel an organized kitchen. That’s my goal for this morning. I’ll use the 20 minute timer to get me going

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