Sara hasn’t been sleeping much and the act of paying attention to all her stressors is actually stressing her out more. She takes a few deep breaths to calm herself. Greg is watching her. He asks how her week went. She unloads. When she is done she just stops. She sits with her eyes closed catching her breath.
Greg starts to talk to her ever so quietly. He asks her to pay attention to her breath as she inhales into her belly and exhales. Allowing the natural rhythm of her breath to flow. Following that flow without intervention. Just allowing it to be. Inhale. Exhale. Notice any sensations as you breath – inhale, exhale. Acknowledge these sensations. Do not judge them or question them, allow them to be. Breathe – inhale, exhale. This goes on for a few minutes. Then Sara notices that Greg isn’t talking any more. She slowly opens her eyes. She is much more relaxed. That, Greg tells her, is mindful breathing. It’s a very common technique. Practice it anytime, anywhere. Practice it often.
For this week, aside from mindful breathing, I want you to consider mindful eating. Find at least one meal a day where you can take time aside to eat at a dining table preferably, in silence (no distractions – computer, phone, etc), where you can eat your meal. When you eat your meal consider the sight, touch, sound, smell and taste of the food. Consider who grew and picked the food, all the people in the process to get you the food, and ultimately who made the food. Make note of all you experience. Give yourself the time to truly appreciate the food you are eating.
"When walking, walk. When eating, eat." Zen Proverb
Check out this article. http://harvardmagazine.com/2010/09/mindful-munching
Zenning your diet: http://life.gaiam.com/article/zen-your-diet