Recently the term, Mindfulness, has re emerged into my daily life thanks to several clients and a Wayne Dyer audiobook (tons of fun!) One of my favorite quotes from the book that has really made my last few days special, is to "think small, and achieve big things"...totally the opposite of how I usually do thinking in my life. When Dyer was asked how he had made such great achievements in his life, his response was "one small thought at a time".
So Mindfulness is available in every aspect of our life, let's focus on 1 very important task we do everyday, and many times a day - Eating.
So let's practice with something small (right?) Take an apple and a banana, or your favorite fruit in your home currently, cut up a couple of bite sizes, and get ready to sense your food -
1. Pick up the fruit ( first did this with the banana and then repeated the instructions with the apple) and experience its texture and smell.
2. Take two big inhales and exhales to return yourself to a state of relaxation. When you’re stressed, you are in a state of fight-or-flight, so all of the blood is in your muscles. This is not a prime state for digestion.
3. Put the piece of fruit in your mouth, but do not chew. Experience the texture of the fruit against your tongue and the initial burst of flavor.
4. Chew the piece of fruit three times. Experience the result.
5. Chew the piece of fruit three more times. Experience the result again.
6. Then chew your piece of fruit twenty more times. Swallow only after the piece of fruit has achieved the consistency of a sort of paste.
We have learned that this was the consistency that our food should always be in whenever we swallow. The more work you do during the chewing portion of eating (recommended that you chew everything you eat at least 25 times), the less energy your body has to spend during digestion later. Here’s the piece of information that stuck with me the most: the less energy your body needs to use for digestion, the more energy you’ll have for other things ( another reason for eating plants and drinking smoothies!!!).
Mindful Eating Challenge:
We challenge you to try to mindfully eat all of your meals for an entire day. Notice how you feel, how your food tastes, and how your satisfaction levels change
Then add another day until you reach a week - the first few days will be more challenging so it is important to get through them and go for the full week.
Please let us know how you feel - we would love to hear about your experiences!
I am always amazed at the different tastes of foods, when we eat quickly we get a bit of an overhaul in taste, when eating mindfully, we notice the 6 tastes of food and our emotions around them...
Here are a few other Mindful Daily Tips to help bring Presence back to your life
When you’re working on the computer: Notice your energetic state as you work on your computer. What is the cadence of your breath as you’re surfing the net? The quality of your inhale? Do you fully exhale?
Do you feel rushed, pressured, or calm and at ease? What helps you relax while you’re working on your computer?
How often do you need to take breaks in order to feel balanced? Do you feel present while you’re working on your computer? See what helps you to breathe easy while you’re on your computer.
When you're waiting: When you are waiting at a stoplight or for a friend, do you feel the need to check your cell phone? Where does the need arise from? How do you feel when you don’t check your iPhone? Are you uncomfortable without having something to do?
What would it be like to simply take three breaths and allow yourself to relax without doing?
Checking your cell: How often do you feel the need to check your cell phone? How do you feel when you receive a text or voicemail? How do you feel when you don't receive any messages? Be fully aware of what is happening to your energy before, during and after you are using your cell. See how detailed you can become in your own awareness of using your cell phone.
Be light-hearted when you are practicing these exercises. And most of all, remember you are doing this to enjoy life - each and every moment!