MINDFULNESS WHEN EATING
This exercise can be practiced during meal times:
1. Cook your food mindfully, creating a kitchen and dining area free of any distractions. Turn off the television, the radio, and prepare a sitting area where you are able to eat your meal without anything to distract you from that.
2. If you are eating with others, make arrangements with them to have a silent meal while you are eating. Or arrange to eat by yourself if this is not possible.
3. Before you start eating, take a few deep breaths and think about where your food has come from - where it was grown, or where it was raised, the people who worked to produce this food, the stages it went through to be produced, and how it ended up on your plate at this moment in time.
4. Look at your food and how it has been beautifully and lovingly prepared on your plate.
5. Start to eat it, while taking one bite at a time, pausing to really taste each mouthful, and chewing slowly and awarely.
6. After you've swallowed each mouthful, pause and take a couple of breaths before taking the next bite.
7. If you are finding your attention is wandering to other thoughts, gently allow it to return to eating this meal.
8. Eat until you notice you feel satisfied, don't just finish the whole meal because it is there on the plate in front of you.
Notice and listen to your body's needs.
If you feel full then stop eating.
9. Be present and curious as you eat, allowing time to enjoy eating this food - one of the main sustainers of your life.
10. After you've finished eating, take a few moments before washing up or doing another task, to savour the meal and take some deep breaths to relish the activity you have just done.