Mindfulness…One Bite At A Time

Recently I participated in an online mindful eating mentoring group with fellow colleagues to fine tune our teaching skills and methodologies in order to better help others. Unexpected side benefits such as weight loss, jaw alignment, and health improvements occurred among us as a result of digging deep into the work. A beautiful example of the adage – to help oneself, look to helping another. Mindfulness is a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, on one’s thoughts, feelings and sensations without judgement. It is particularly helpful when used as a therapeutic technique. Many people strive to achieve this state through formal means such as yoga, Feldenkrais, meditation and a variety of intuitive trainings. Others tap into the mindful state when they are gardening, walking or running. For myself, achieving this state while playing tennis or golf may take me many lifetimes to achieve. Sigh. Practicing mindful eating creates wonderful lifelong benefits such as weight loss, better health, more enjoyment and pleasure, feelings of fullness and satiety, and ultimately more self-compassion – How does it get any better than that? Here are five simple tips as a starter pack: Put down your food or fork after every single bite. Habits of eating actually begin with the reach of the hand and have nothing to do with hunger. Watch yourself go into auto pilot with your hands. If necessary, sit on your hands between bites in order to convince your brain you really would like to change this habit. WAIT! As you bring the tiny morsel of food to your lips pause to smell it, really...