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How to make food shopping so fun you’ll want to go every day

Do you enjoy shopping for food?

I have to confess to being a food shopping junkie, I can’t get enough.

However, I know a lot of people don’t enjoy it all and want to get it over and done with as soon as possible. I totally get it, that’s how I feel about clothes shopping; I don’t enjoy it but I know it’s necessary.

You can’t whip up healthy meals if you don’t have ingredients to work from. Having a well stocked kitchen makes all the difference. It means that you have lots of options to choose from depending on what you fancy and don’t have to run out to the shops to buy that missing ingredients.

Here are several strategies to transform shopping into an enjoyable fun experience. There’s a mix of practical time and hassle saving tips and others to make it more fun. Try a couple out and see what a difference they make.

1.    Write a list before you go – having a list and sticking to it makes shopping so much quicker (and cheaper). Take some time before you leave the house to look through your cupboards to see what’s running low so that you don’t miss anything out and have to go again.

I like to sit down beforehand with a cup of tea and think about all the tasty meals I want to make in the week ahead. Consider what activities you and your family have planned.

2.    Group your list by category – produce, grains, etc. If you want to be really fancy you can order your list by aisle, this is even easier if you go to the same store every time you shop because you’ll be familiar with the layout and can go in order that you normally walk through avoiding backtracking to get things.
Alternatively you might prefer to break up the monotony by rotating your trips between several different stores in your area. That way you can mix it up with a slightly different selection of products.

3.    Pick your time – go first thing in the morning or late at night when its emptier and there are less crowds.

4.    Go to the check out as soon as possible – it avoids temptation to start browsing (and buying items you don’t need) and reduces your waiting time.

In terms of which line to pick, always go for the shortest queue regardless of how many items they have, because what takes the longest is the actual payment process, scanning items takes seconds per piece.

5.    Treat yourself – do something that you enjoy as a reward for having completed the shopping. Maybe you stop off at your favourite cafe on the way home, watch a television programme that you love or call a friend.

6.    Go with a friend – it can be fun to go food shopping with a friend, but I don’t recommend going with a small child if you can avoid it.

7.    Don’t go on an empty tummy – unless you want to come home with way to much stuff including a wide selection on impulse buys that are probably not all that healthy. That was your hunger pangs doing the choosing.

8.    Group similar items together on the conveyor belt. For instance, keep all fruit and vegetables together, refrigerated items together, cleaning products together, tins together and save your fragile items (like eggs) for last. This makes it easier to unpack and put everything away when you get home.

9.    Make it fun – having a positive attitude makes all the difference. Rather than seeing it as a chore think of all the ways in which you can make it fun. Here are some to get you started:

  • Try reframing shopping into a game, think of it as a scavenger hunt and time yourself.
  • Listen to music, compile a shopping playlist of all your favourite tunes so that you rock it out down the aisles.
  • Consider shopping as an adventure, with you in the central role as an intrepid explorer discovering new shops and new ingredients, who needs to go travelling.
  • See it as an opportunity to dress up nicely and flirt with the staff and other customers, you never know who you’ll meet!

By following these tips you’ll not only make the whole process more enjoyable and fun. The increased efficiency will cut down the time you spend in the actual shop and save you money, leaving you more time and money to spend on the things you do enjoy.

Now I’d love to hear from you.

Do you love shopping or hate it?

What strategies do you employ to make it more fun?

Leave your answers in the comments below.

And if you find this useful, go ahead and share it with your friends. As always, thanks for reading.

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