So often we eat mindlessly. We stuff food into our mouths while working on the computer, watching TV, or when we’re on the run. The pleasure of eating lies in slowing down and fully experiencing all of the elements of food. Take some time to explore each of the following during your next meal and notice the difference. Sight: Look at your food and imagine you are a Martian scientist. You just arrived on Earth and have never seen this food before. Look at it carefully without naming it. Can you see the water, the rain and the sunlight within the food?
Smell: Bring the food up to your nose. Without naming the scent, experience smelling the food, and then describe what you smell.
Physiological reaction: Now focus on what is going on in your mouth. Begin to notice that saliva is produced, even though you haven’t yet put the food in your mouth. Notice the mind/body phenomenon and how the senses respond to the anticipation of food being eaten. Touch: Now explore how the food feels. Without naming the sensation, just experience touching your food. Motion and movement: How is it that your hand knows how to move the food directly to the lips? As you bring the food up to your mouth, notice what happens next. The mouth receives the food. Nothing goes into the mouth without it being received. And who or what is doing the receiving? The tongue. Observe what the tongue does with it. How does it get the food between the teeth? It’s amazing that the tongue is so skilled, and that such a remarkable muscle can actually receive food and then know what to do with it every time.
Taste: After becoming aware of the food in your mouth, start biting into it very slowly. Then begin to chew. Notice that the tongue decides which side of the mouth it’s going to chew on. Give all your attention to your mouth and take a few bites. Then stop to experience what’s happening. What is happening is invariably an explosion of taste. Express what’s going on. Be really specific. What is the experience? Is it sweet or sour or juicy? There are hundreds of words to describe the experience of tasting. Texture: As you continue to chew the tastes change, as does the consistency. At a certain point you will become aware of the texture of the food because the taste has mostly passed. If the texture causes aversion, you may want to swallow it, but try to keep it in your mouth. Swallow: Don’t swallow it yet. Stay with the impatience and the inborn impulse to swallow. Do not swallow until you detect the impulse to do so. And then observe what is involved in getting the food over to the place where it’s going to be swallowed. When you detect the impulse to swallow, follow it down into the stomach, feel your whole body and acknowledge that your body is now exactly one bite heavier. Breath: Next, pause for a moment or two, and see if you can taste your breath in a similar way. Bring the same quality of attention to the breath that you gave to seeing, feeling, smelling and tasting the food. Silence: Be silent. By this point, you understand something of what meditation is. It is doing what we do all the time, except we’re doing it with attention: directed, moment-to-moment, nonjudgmental attention.
(You can also do this with another person, moving the food close to their mouth, but not all the way into their mouth. You can even massage their lips with the food to see what happens. The main thing is to have fun, learn something and understand yourself better.)
You can clutch the past so tightly to your chest that it leaves your arms too full to embrace the present.-Jan Glidewell
People like “stuff”. We tend to hold onto it year after year. We save and stock up on things that we don’t know what to do with anymore. Maybe we keep things because they hold precious memories of days gone by, or they remind us of our parents, grandparents, past loves or childhood. To part with these precious possessions seems out of the question. There is a saying that goes, “You have to get rid of the old to make way for the new.” If you are feeling stuck or stagnant in your life, try spring-cleaning. Throw out some of that stuff, say goodbye to your past and welcome the new energy of your happy, healthy future. Try these three ideas:
For good mental and physical health, we actually have two “houses” that need to be spring-cleaned: our physical homes and our physical bodies. Just as we accumulate “stuff” in the form of outgrown clothes, magazines, rusty bicycles, tools and random keepsakes, so do our bodies accumulate old food residues and toxins that need to be cleaned out.
2. To spring clean your body, give it a break from rich and complicated foods by either cleansing or fasting for a short period of time. Cleansing means paring down your food to just simple fruits and vegetables, lots of water and perhaps whole grains. Fasting means limiting most foods and drinking lots of water, fresh vegetable and fruit juices, teas and soups. Without much energy going toward digestion, more energy is available to the rest of your body and mind. Cleansing and fasting can sharpen your concentration and help you gain insight, giving you a fresh focus on life. It can also bring improved immune function and better digestion.
3. While you’re cleaning out your body and home, don’t forget to spring-clean your heart. Throw away negative thoughts and habits you’ve been harboring that no longer serve you. A clean, open heart will allow you to receive all the good that awaits you each and every day. If your heart and mind are cluttered, there is no room for life’s gifts and surprises to enter.
Enjoy this beautiful spring day as you walk in the sunshine! Breathe deeply, laugh long and smile at everyone you meet.
1/2 cup flaxseed meal
1/2 cup wheat germ
1/2 chopped almonds
1/4 cup chia seeds
1 cup raisins
3 cups Rice Krispies
1 cup Quick Oats
1 cup coconut
1 cup raw sunflower seeds
1 cup honey
1 cup peanut butter
1/3 cup Hershey’s Cocoa Special Dark 100% Cocao
Mix flaxseed meal, wheat germ, almonds, chia seeds, raisins, Rice Krispies, oats, coconut, sunflower seeds in a large bowl . In a small saucepan on the stove, warm the honey & peanut butter till melted. Stir in the cocao till well mixed. Take off the stove and pour onto the dry ingredients. Mix all together well. Press down into a 9×13 inch pan and chill. Cut into bars and eat! This makes a delicious, healthy snack!
*I created this for a friend who is diabetic and needed a diabetic friendly recipe*
Did you know today is a command? March 4th!! I decided to use this as my topic to blog on today.
What does it mean to march forth? At the beginning of January, or maybe on the evening before, a lot of people wrote out a list of things they wanted to change in their life or goals to reach in 2015. Perhaps, your list is on a mental notepad, and never was written down? That’s okay… Maybe you listed you wanted to stop an addiction- smoking, drinking soda pop or coffee, eating less chocolate or less food? Maybe you listed you wanted to work out at the gym more, drink more water, go on your dream vacation…
Whatever you wrote down, have you reached your goal? If not, is there something that is holding you back? Sometimes fear of the unknown keeps us from taking the first step forward towards our goal. I have experienced this many times- especially with starting this blog. I set many goals, but fear of the unknown future would not let me take the first step. I have had many mentors who believed in me and kept asking if I had taken the first step yet, gently encouraging me onward. Once I started that first step and then took another step towards my goal, it seemed as if the goal did not look so far away!
I BELIEVE IN YOU!! You are worth fighting for no matter what anyone or anything tries to tell you! If you are struggling right now to reach your goal for better health (including mental, emotional, physical or spiritual) and would like to have someone come along side and support you in your journey, this message is for you! If you are not quite ready to take that first step, it’s okay. I want you to be ready.
I believe in YOU and know that if I can do this, you can too! We believe what we tell ourselves. I know habits are hard to break, but the…
I sense that someone needed this message today. If that is you, feel free to send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know. I will listen. I care. You are worth it!