Do you only eat when you are hungry? or are you like me and have Hand-to-Mouth disease, that is where your hand is possessed and puts food in your mouth without consulting you?
Perhaps you are on the “see” food diet (“See” food and eat it) or maybe, eating is an obsession and you suffer because you eat to avoid or stuff down feelings. Whatever the case, if you make a shift in your perception, you can change and embrace mindful eating.
I know it sounds a bit woo woo, but bear with me. Mindful eating involves concentrating on your experience of eating and drinking, both inside and outside your body.
Mindful eating helps you to understand what your body is telling you about hunger and satisfying hunger. Your body, heart, and mind together are the real determining forces for hunger, fullness or feeling satisfied. Mindful eating helps us understand this triad and what we are really hungry for so we can find another source of comfort that deals with the real issue.
We don’t eat to escape.
We don’t eat to fill voids in our lives.
When we stop eating to fill voids, we release excess weight.
This concept of mindful eating might be of interest to you. This is how you can make it applicable in your daily eating routine.
1. Understand mindfulness:
To understand mindful eating, you must first appreciate mindfulness.
Mindfulness – a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations. It should be noted that mindfulness is free of criticism, it just observes things as they are without judgment.
You have to become aware of what is going on in your inside to adapt it according to the environment (the outside). Every person’s state of mind, body and environment is different from another person. What works for me won’t necessarily work for you, so it is inappropriate for you to try to adopt someone else’s approach towards mindfulness. If you grasp the concept of mindfulness and mindful eating, you will have command over your eating habits.
2. Understand the ‘body – heart – mind’ triad:
Understand which of the elements is actually hungry. A hungry body signifies “an empty stomach,” a hungry heart signifies your “wants” for eating while a hungry mind signifies “your decision” to appreciate the needs of body and heart before eating.
This does not mean that eating for heart is unhealthy, that would mean never eating your favourite meals. The golden rule though is to synchronize the body – heart – mind to have a balanced approach.
Specify your wants and needs regarding eating. Ask yourself “is it really necessary to eat what I want to eat right now?”. An unbalanced approach of the can be tolerated once in a blue moon, but not on regular basis.
3. Manipulate your psychology:
You might be thinking that it’s not an easy task but manipulating your own psychology doesn’t always require a psychologist or a nutritionist. No other person understands your body, mind, and heart better than you do!
This isn’t about making massive changes in your eating routine or you dictating to your body, mind or heart, this is about listening to what your body, heart and mind are actually telling you.
Make a habit of enjoying meals which are necessary and not just a source of satisfying your other desires. Human psychology appreciates “heart satisfying” meals. Before you eat, ask yourself if you are hungry or is your soul hungry? If you are soul hungry, give yourself some soul love such as a self-hug or get a hug from a friend.