OH! SO THAT’S WHAT MINDFUL EATING IS!

Little girls beneath an apple tree, playing with apples.

When I first meet with Evolving Eaters
and we talk about
their previous experiences with
Mindful Eating,
I realize,

they have NOT been practicing Mindful Eating…

…they’ve been practicing
Fear Mind Eating.

They say,
When I try to eat Mindfully:

~It feels like I’m being asked to sit
and be present
with all my stress and anxiety.
It feels like that’s what I’m eating….
stress and anxiety.
And of course the guilt….
So I don’t want to be present.

~All I’m aware of
when I sit and eat
and don’t distract
with TV or reading
are my spinning thoughts:

how fat I am
how I don’t deserve to eat this…
or anything
How bad this food is.
How bad I am.

WHOA!

What is Mindful Eating, really?

It’s about bringing full, curious attention
to your food,
not your fear.

It’s about experiencing your food with
WONDER–
as if…
…you’re eating it for the very first time.
Showing up as if you’ve never tasted Chocolate before.

Eating as if
this food is all new,
as if, it’s a fun, silly game.

(Yes, I like games, because when you’re struggling,
eating and food become so serious,
feel so dangerous and charged, it’s challenging to
relax. To trust. To be in the moment.
I’ve found, over the last 30+ years of teaching folks to
recover, that the more we can laugh/lighten up, especially
about food/eating, the easier it is
to shift to peace/healing.)

Here’s how you play the Mindful Eating game:

Make a plate of interesting, tasty food,
~or, select one food to sample at a time.

Use your body,
all of your senses
to investigate this food,
like a 2-year-old.

Pick it up.
Look at it closely.
Poke it.
Squeeze it.
Smell it.
Touch it.
Bend it.
Fold it.
Taste it.
Smile!

You might
Put your attention on
the way that cherry tomato
Pops open in your mouth,
POW!
The sourness of that lemon,
How the hot peppers
make one side of your tongue
t-i-n-g-l-e.

Curiosity and deep engagement
create spaciousness (Distance)
from
the commentary of The Mind,
The Story (good food/bad food)
The Fear
Judgement and
Guilt.

With practice,

You can shift your attention from
The Mind (shaming, snarky, opinions)
To the pleasant, varied sensations in your mouth.
The Direct Experience of this moment.

Now, you’re eating like a food detective
or a Restaurant Reviewer for The NY Times.

Food is no longer good or bad,

It’s sweet or salty
Crunchy or creamy.

You’re eating with your fingers
Eating like a child
(making a mess is great!)
Giving your full attention to
How amazing and different
Every food feels
in your mouth
on your tongue, against your teeth.

Practice.

Play The Mindful Eating game
for the first 3 bites of your meal.
Then go for five minutes.

Take a break.
Breathe.

Notice and compare.
What gives you more peace, pleasure and fun:
Fear Mind Eating or
Mindful Eating?

Love to hear about your experiments and experiences. Just hit the button below!

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