Mindful Eating: a Yoga Mat for Your Mouth
Yoga is union. Mindful eating is also yoga — in the sense that eating unites your body and mind’s intention through a moment of eating presence. Create an eating mindfulness placemat that you could carry with you like a yoga mat, from table to table, from setting to setting, whether you are eating in or eating out, as a kind of portable eating mindfulness space of your own.
Sketch out a placemat that includes a visual diagram of mindful eating. For example, draw a picture of the eyes to denote the mindfulness of the appearance of food, with an arrow pointing to a nose for the mindfulness of smell, with an arrow pointing to a picture of the tongue for the mindfulness of taste, with an arrow pointing back to your mind (to remember to “open your mind before you open your mouth”).
Or, to awaken the eating zombie, include mindfulness call-outs to get your own attention, such as:
- Eating is Movement, Pause the Flow!
- Redefine “Enough” – Mindful, not Mouthful!
- Mindful Eating is Self-Synchronization.
- Eating is physiologically inevitable, but mindfulness isn’t – wake up!
- Who’s eating?
- Open Your Mind Before You Open Your Mouth.
- Made of Earth, I am eating Earth and becoming Earth.
You can also include various pointers on craving control, fullness, process of eating. If you have already formulated your Philosophy of Eating, you can summarize it on the placemat as well:
- Eat to live, not live to eat!
- Eating changes both body and mind, the total of who I am. What I eat and how much I eat changes who I am physiologically. Why I eat and how I eat changes who I am psychologically.
Your mindful eating placemat can also include mindful emotional eating harm-reduction tips on how to shift from mindless emotional overeating to responsible emotional eating such as:
- When eating to cope, remember that emotional eating does not have to mean emotional overeating. Emotional eating is not a problem. Mindless emotional eating is.
- Whenever I eat to cope I begin with a course of relaxation!
Related resources: Mindful Eating Tracker
Somov, P. (2013). Mindful Eating: a Yoga Mat for Your Mouth. Psych Central. Retrieved on February 5, 2016, from http://blogs.psychcentral.com/mindful-living/2013/06/mindful-eating-a-yoga-mat-for-your-mouth/