‘Please leave me alone while I am eating cheesecake. I want to enjoy every bit of it’ – just me, real me.
When first I joined my current company, I was shocked by the lunch culture. Most people eat their lunch on their desk, in front of their laptop. Seriously?
Later, I figured out that this behavior is part of English culture. Accepted as part of lifestyle doesn’t mean I agree with it. I don’t need to have an hour break the way they do it in France but I am a pro member of mindful eating and I just can’t think eating in front of your computer helps mindful eating.
Mindful eating for me is a situation where I am fully aware of what I am eating. I feel the food structure while chewing it and absorb the taste when it touches my tounge.
It does not mean I have to eat slowly and chew 36 times as suggested. In contrary, I eat relatively fast compared to most people. However, what I am trying to do is ‘being here and now’ for my food.
Imagine you are doing a task and you need to concentrate. It is less likely you do something else because this task requires your full attention. Of course I don’t treat eating my meal as doing a hard chores but I’d love to think eating is something important that can only be enjoyable if I put my mind there.
I am not always successful in eating mindfully but I have some rule that helps me stick with it.
First, no eating while doing anything. This includes watching TV, read, or working on the computer. If I really don’t have time, I try to eat faster for a shorter time. Not the best solution but I’d prefer doing that to do it in front of a computer. This trick is actually the most common one and I find it works really well.
Another thing is to put my meal on proper plates. For example, instead of eating crisp from the bag, I put it on the bowl, sit in the dining room, and enjoy my crisp. It brings my brain to real situation.
Last, I try – not always successful but I try – to ask myself before I eat: do I want this? am I really hungry? Does the hunger comes from my eyes, brain, or stomach? This helps me stop binge eating because it gives me more time to think and feel in advance.
Eating mindfully rebuilds my relationship with food. I binge less as I am allowed to act consciously. It also gives me a proper time to enjoy the taste of my meal. As the result, it provides me with better satisfaction and appreciation of food.