Something very interesting happened to me the other week. Someone said to me, “You have the tiniest waist I have ever seen.”
Yes, I stopped in my tracks. My stomach area gave me the most grief for years and years, and I will admit there are still times here and there that I find myself sizing it up and backtracking into that negative talk. There was a time when I was in my early twenties that a boyfriend told me I could stand to do some more sit ups, and if you think words don’t have an impact, well, they DO. It took a long time for me to realize there was absolute no truth in that at all. If I could have all of those hours of sit ups and crunches back, I would not waste it again over such toxic words of absolute no value.
So when she said that, again, I stopped in my tracks. SHE thought MY stomach was tiny?!!! The part of my body I loathed for so long?
And that’s when I realized something; perspective. It’s all about perspective. When looking at our own bodies, we see the parts we don’t like in an unnatural perspective. We look at them, we stare for long periods of time. We size things up and scrutinize. We put our bodies through hell to perfect those parts only to continue to see them with such negativity.
It is our perspective that can get the best of us, that can keep us from being comfortable in our own skin, and from seeing the true beauty that we live in.
When someone compliments anything about your hair, your body, your skin, do you brush it off? Deny it? Think the person is just being nice? Why is that everyone can see our beauty but when we look in the mirror, all we see is what we wish was different. Maybe it’s time to give ourselves a break, stop being so hard on ourselves. No one else seems to be. Maybe it’s time we look at our bodies with a completely different pair of eyes.
10 years ago, when perfection was all I strived for, hearing someone say the words I heard last week would have been golden. But you know what? It would not have lasted long at all. Because from there, I would have started working harder and trying more to make sure that I didn’t lose that tiny waist no matter what it cost me. A tiny waist is never worth living in misery. Never.
But now, it is a different story. Hearing someone make a comment about my body now stirs things up a little, but it spins a different way. It pushes me to remind myself of my priorities, to remember what is really important and to note that it’s all about perspective. And no matter what anyone else thinks about my body, it’s all relative. And as long as I feel okay in my skin, then everything is just fine.
When it comes to energy bites and recipes with similar bases, I recently thought I may have tapped on flavor combinations. However, not true at all. My energy bites typically contain dates, nuts and a few add ins. However, until now, I hadn’t thrown oats into the mix of all of these basic recipes. I am so glad I did! The reason I never did was because they always came out way too dry. Recently, the addition of a bit of coconut oil changed everything!
You should consider these Salted Caramel Oat + Nut Bars the first of a new installment of no bake bars/bites/treats, etc.
The bonus of this recipe is you really can choose your own adventure. Looking for a sweet treat? Add the caramel. Looking for more of an afternoon snack to give you an energy boost? Skip the caramel. I promise it serves its purpose either way.
This is a simple no bake bar that can be perfect for lunches or to bring as a treat to share at work or just to munch on at home!
Salted Caramel Oat + Nut Bars
- 1 1/4 cup rolled oats gluten free if desired
- 1/2 c raw pecans
- 1/2 c raw almonds
- 8-10 medjool dates pitted
- 1/4 c coconut oil not melted
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Dash of sea salt
- 8-10 medjool dates pitted and soaked in warm water for approx. 2-4 hours
- 2-3 T pure maple syrup or honey
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- In a food processor, combine nuts and oats.
- Process until grain like texture.
- Add in all other ingredients and process until a slight dough starts to form.
- Press the mixture very firmly into a 8x8 in pan lined with parchment.
- Freeze for about 10-15 minutes.
- While bars are chilling, place caramel ingredients into food processor.
- Process until smooth and caramel like--this may take about 5 minutes or so. You can pause and press down as needed.
- Sweeten and salt to taste.
- Spread caramel over bars and freeze for another 10 minutes.
- Transfer to fridge and allow to chill until ready to cut and serve.
If you don't have time to soak the dates for several hours, let them sit in hot water for about 15-25 minutes.