Mindful Spiral Approach to My Birthday Meal

Last week, I attended a virtual “trailhead” with a local organization called Renewal in the Wilderness. These trailheads are designed to “make space for us to connect as a community and to share a weekly intention meant to deepen our day-to-day encounters with the elements.” For the one I attended last Tuesday, the intent was around focusing on the edges and boundaries in our lives, and the leader shared an interesting mindfulness approach to doing this. I want to use it while out in the wilderness, but I also decided it would be fun to apply to mindful eating. And I had the perfect occasion to try it – my birthday meal. Mindful Spiral The way this approach works is by getting a small piece

Why It’s Important to Break Down Mindful Eating

I recently read a book called The Last Hillwalker: A Sideways Look at Forty Years in Britain’s Mountains by John D. Burns, and this passage caught my attention. “We’ve also learned to break this big beast down, to set our sights on the top of the next hill, the floor of the next valley. The whole walk is too big to contemplate; let’s just make it to that farmhouse, to the next road, across the next field, over the next stile.” (p. 48) When I read this, I realized that while this idea of breaking down the “big beast” was written about hiking, it also applies to mindful eating. Why Break Down Mindful Eating? When I first started thinking about changing my eating patterns, I was nearly paralyze

5 Ways to Practice Mindful Eating

You’ve probably heard the phrase “practice makes perfect,” but at least in terms of mindful eating, that’s not the best guidance. Striving for perfection sets you up for feelings of failure, shame, and guilt. And besides, we’re only human – perfection isn’t possible! That doesn’t mean practice isn’t important, but I liked the way a presenter talked about it on a recent webinar. She said the reason to practice is that “you get better with practice.” That’s a much better approach for mindful eating. It doesn’t imply that you’ll attain a perfect state where you’ll always eat mindfully, all the time. Instead, it just reminds you that if you want to eat mindfully more often, it’s something you ne

Make Every Day No Diet Day

I’m a bit embarrassed to say that May 6 – No Diet Day – completely passed me by until a friend posted about it on Facebook. So I figured I’d make up for that miss by writing a blog post about No Diet Day . How Did No Diet Day Start? This is an internationally recognized day that began in 1992, thanks to a woman named Mary Evans Young. Young was a British feminist who’d had body image issues, suffered bullying, and struggled with anorexia. She had already formed the organization Diet Breakers, but then she got the additional inspiration to start No Diet Day. The moment came when Young heard some of her coworkers talk about whether or not to have a cookie. As the National Today website no

3 Ways Multitasking Impacts Your Eating

While recently listening to an episode of the podcast Stuff You Should Know (SYSK), I was reminded of something that I sometimes try to conveniently forget. Multitasking is a myth. Like many, I often have so much going on that I feel like I need to do two things at once, but it doesn’t work that way. As the SYSK podcast pointed out, our brains can only focus on one thing at a time, which is why people instinctively turn down the radio when they’re lost. They know they need to truly focus on what they’re doing if they want to get wherever they’re trying to go. Even so, many of us – and yes, I’m including myself – try to multitask, but in addition to not working, it has some negative side effe

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