What do you notice if you just eat? For me when I’m doing it well, it’s a sense of relief not to have to think about everything else that’s happening in my life. I can just eat. Full stop. Nothing else. No thinking about what I need to do for work when I finish breakfast. No thinking about whether I’ve got time to put the washing on or what to cook for dinner. No thinking about world events or failings. No judgements about what is good and what is not, about me, or my life, or politics, or the planet. Just eating.
Today at breakfast I didn’t do a great job of it. My mind was thinking about disappointing relationships and replaying undesirable moments. If it does nothing else mindfulness brings awareness. In my case this morning, it made me aware of what I was spending my energy on – and it wasn’t where I wanted it to be at all. It also highlighted areas that need my active attention, not just obsessive re-runs.
As I go to eat my lunch now, I’ll be asking myself some questions to keep me focussed on just eating. How does it look? What colours is it? How does it feel? Hot, cold? Crunchy, soft? What about smells and flavours as I take a mouthful? What sounds does eating make? I’ll aim to be focussed on just eating and enjoying it. Eating is one of life’s great pleasures. I don’t want to miss it.
© Palitja Moore, text and images, 2020