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Mindfulness

I started writing this, an hour ago when the rain was pouring down. The sun then popped out from behind the pesky rain clouds so I took Jack out to enjoy the rays of the evening sun on my skin. Ha it was too cold for that and so Jack had to put up with a quick blast round the kid’s course, and then home. He’s had 2 good walks already today and is now snoring.

I read an article in the Metro this afternoon on my return from Edinburgh, having met Mum at the Botanics for lunch. The article was based on the fact that the reason many of us over-eat has a lot to do with how we are occupied whilst eating (unfortunately I can’t remember the name of the woman who wrote the article, but she offered 9 tips on eating mindfully).

I know I am guilty of eating too quickly, anxious as I am to move onto the next thing on my ‘to do’ list. There are evenings when I have prepared, cooked and eaten a meal in less than 15 minutes: an omelette or a salad, for example, and often when I am on my own. Invariably the TV is on, and so my attention is distracted from the food going into my mouth. Or else I will have the radio on but then look through Facebook posts, Tweets or emails. Very occasionally I will read a book, but all of these activities prevent me from focussing on what I am actually doing and that is eating. The result is that I then spend the rest of the evening searching for the next thing to put in my mouth, and not accepting that what I have eaten has been sufficient. My head tells me I should have had enough, but my stomach sends a different signal, and anything will do, the sweeter the better.

Mindful eating which will include ridding myself of unnecessary distractions (He might have to eat in a separate room!), ensuring I chew at least 15-20 times for each mouthful, and allowing my mind to drift is how I intend to proceed at mealtimes, where possible. I’m not about to become a recluse.

I did actually practice this a short while ago and cooked an omelette with peas and soya beans followed by a very small bowl of home-made granola and almond milk. Interestingly do feel full.

The TV and radio were both off and I noticed the robin sitting in the apple tree, eyeing the bumble bees flitting in and out of the ornamental blackcurrant bush. I heard the twilight twitter of the birds preparing to settle for the night, and watched the shadows on the wall opposite as the sun headed West.

If I can lose a few pounds, even better, but more than anything I want to enjoy eating for pleasure, mindfully.

Mindfulness – a poem

Mind the gap, and mind where you are going.

Mind how he used to laugh at your jokes.

Mind how meals were at the heart of family life,

carefully sourced, lovingly prepared, the table set.

Mind how you couldn’t get a word in,

and then clammed up when they all turned to listen.

Mind how feared you were of being invisible.

Mind how fearful you were when attention came your way.

Be mindful of what’s around you now.

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