If you haven’t read the first post, go here: Getting Off the Hamster Wheel: Tip #1
How successful were you at last week’s challenge? Were you able to drink more water? The amount you needed to drink? Were you consistent? Was it harder than you thought to not do anything else goal-wise?
Thought so. 🙂
By now, you’ve probably noticed how naked you feel without a water bottle, how you want to drink water more often, how food actually tastes different when you are properly hydrated…which brings me to this week’s tip:
Tip #2. Focus on doing nothing but eating when you’re eating.
No, really, when it’s time to eat, eat.
Pay attention to your food, how it tastes, your level of hunger or fullness, if it actually satisfies you or not. This goes perfectly in hand with my next tip, but you’ll have to wait till next Monday to get that one. When was the last time you sat down to eat, by yourself, with no book, no phone, no computer, no TV, nothing? Probably a long time. Scenery is wonderfully relaxing, if you can go outside in the sun to eat your lunch, do so. If you can’t, doesn’t matter. The point of main importance here is to focus on your food, and that’s it.
I recommend doing this alone, as when you talk with people you end up eating more than you might otherwise. A lot of people have trouble eating alone, are you one of them? How does eating alone make you feel? With no distractions? Lonely? Bored? Scared? Peaceful? Take note of these emotions. If you have a journal to write in, make a note of these things:
- level of hunger before you ate
- how you felt while eating
- level of satisfaction after you ate
These are huge keys to tell you if you are using food to help with your emotion or are really eating out of hunger.
I want you to take this entire next week and for every meal you have make it a goal to:
- sit down to eat (standing distracts you)
- eliminate all distractions: no books, no phone, no tablet, no TV
- as you eat concentrate on the taste, sight, smell and texture of your food
- as you eat, notice what emotions come up as you eat alone. Whatever comes up, don’t run from it, acknowledge it with interest and maybe even curiosity, but don’t run. you feel this way for a reason. Find out what it is, later you can find out why.
Things you might notice as you get used to eating this way:
- you begin to enjoy your food more
- you tend to eat less
- your appetite isn’t as big as you thought it was
- you are able to recognize satisfaction
- you chew more slowly
- you feel calmer and enjoy things around you
Aren’t these all things we want anyway?
So, building upon last week’s challenge of drinking enough water (did you hit 4 liters? How many days?), this week, you will continue to drink your water goal and add the goal of every time you sit down to eat, you do nothing but eat. To meet this goal, my family tends to turn on the TV, I’ve had to leave them and go outside…it was a beautiful day outside and I enjoyed my dinner much more in the sunshine listening to birds than being ignored while everyone watched TV. I doubt they tasted their food and not only did I enjoy mine, I was satisfied with less.
Make note here, your goal is not to eat less, your goal is to eat without distraction. Whatever that means, find a way to do it and let us know how it went. What were your findings? Did it freak you out and now you enjoy it? Good luck and I’ll see you next week for the next tip!
If you haven’t read the other tips in the series, they are meant to be read in order. Start here:
The 9 Things you need to do to change your habits and get off the hamster wheel!