The Waffle House: A Simple Mindful Eating Exercise
I believe slowing down and paying attention is one of the cheapest forms of self awareness and personal development. Slowing down and paying attention to what is happening right now, being with your feelings and noticing how your body feels in that moment is the essence of mindfulness. The beauty of this practice is very simple. Sometimes the simplest things are not always the easiest to apply.
Try this simple mindfulness eating exercise and let me know how it went. Pick a piece of fruit you can easily access to try this exercise and follow the steps below.
- Mentally give yourself permission to do this exercise (J).
- Take a moment to think about the people that may have been involved with the planting, nurturing, processing and distribution of your fruit.
- Pick up your piece of fruit and observe it using your senses:
- Hold the fruit in your hand and feel the texture, temperature, etc.
- Bring the item to your nose and begin to notice the smell (is subtle, obvious, etc.)
- Look at the item and notice how it looks from different angles.
- Raise the item to your ears and listen for any sounds.
- After observing how the item looks, smells, sounds, and feels slowly begin
to eat it and pay attention to how it tastes.
- Continue to slowly savor the fruit and the experience.
- Notice how your body feels and if any sensations arise.
You have just completed a mindfulness eating exercise. Give yourself a big hug! The next time you eat something, slow down and think about all the people that may have played a role in you being able to enjoy your food. Was your food locally grown or imported from another country? Did it taste as you anticipated? Be present with what arises for you as you take time to appreciate your food.
One of my recent mindful eating experiences was at one of my favorite places… wait for it. The Waffle House. The eggs were spectacular and cooked just the way I would have scrambled them, well done. I have my regular location and the people there know me by name and order. (:-) When I tune into these feelings and sensations as I eat, I enjoy the tastes and textures of the food in an indescribable way.
Practicing mindfulness is simple and a lovely way to return to the present moment. Being mindful only needs you and your willingness to give it a try. Stop. Be Present. Check in with your senses and bodily feelings.Feel your feelings. No judgment…well, I like to say LESS judgment. Repeat. It really is that simple. Or is it?
I can’t wait to hear your thoughts on your mindful eating experience. Share your thoughts below.
Daily Practices: Train your Brain
Dr. Richard J. Davidson, William James and Vilas Research Professor of Psychology and Psychiatry, Director of the Waisman Laboratory for Brain Imaging and Behavior, and Founder of the Center for Healthy Minds at the Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison says science confirms that “A wandering mind is an unhappy mind.”
I believe it is important to “train your brain, be kind to your mind and pay attention to what you think about and how you feel.” Having practices around my brain/mind is comforting. It helps me to have a focus for my mind so I say my morning affirmations. Affirmations are statements that are aimed to affect the conscious and the subconscious mind. We have between 60,000-80,000 thoughts during the day, so why not focus specifically on what I would like to show up in my life?
Most mornings I start my day with a walk with my Yorki Poo, Lacee. During my walk I am enjoying the sights and listening to nature. I also say my affirmations aloud. I’ve usually had few minutes (10 or less) in meditation before I start my walk. If I have any questions I want to have my subconscious work on, I think about those questions before I meditate and walk.
Here are some affirmations I say aloud as I’m walking the dog.
- I am calm. I am safe. I am secure. All is well. I am grounded in life.
- Today I take time to laugh more and not take myself so seriously.
- Unexpected income finds me from places I could never recognize. I am grateful.
- I trust my person guidance system (PGS) and I am always moving in the best direction for me at all times.
- I love myself at all ages and stages of life. I am divine.
- I forgive myself. I forgive others. I love myself. I know that forgiveness a key to living a fulfilling life.
- Today, I stop to breathe and connect with the present moment.
- Perfect health is my divine birthright. I eat foods that nourish my body by instinct.
- I allow myself the time to stop for myself to breath.
- People love me and want to help me.
- Things are always working out for me.
- I have strength, stamina, endurance and flexibility. I trust that the right people and resources present themselves to me and I recognize them immediately. I take time during my day to be stil andget clear so I can make the best decisions. I believe that no matter how things appear, things are always working out for my highest and greatest good.
Affirmations may be spoken, written and thought silently. I also practice using my affirmations during the day. Whenever I’m about to interact with people I like to use the affirmation I heard Louise Hay say, “People love me and always want to help me.” I really find that helps lay a great foundation for conversations with people.
I’d enjoy hearing any affirmations, confirmations, or thoughts on how you train your brain.
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Meditations & Conversations is an opportunity for all levels of meditators to gather in community to be in practice together.
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