Many people in our culture place greater emphasis on intellectual qualities rather than feelings, which often creates a disconnect of the body and mind. Powerful emotions lurking beneath the surface often lead to an escape via food, alcohol, work, extreme exercise, television, computer games, etc. Instead of using these behaviors to escape, we want to use our inner experience (feelings, emotions) as a means of deepening our connection to ourselves, others, nature and essentially, to life. Knowing how to describe, heal and be objective about feelings and emotions is vital to awareness, connection and growth. Using techniques, such as mindfulness, that will bring the self into the body to experience feelings is a powerful tool.
“Mindfulness is a translation of a word that simply means awareness. It’s a direct, intuitive knowing of what you are doing while you are doing it. It’s knowing what’s going on inside your mind and body, and what’s going on in the outside world as well.” Mindfulness helps us pay attention and see clearly what is happening in our lives. It helps us stay present and in the moment. It is a way to shift from “autopilot” to deep awareness and connection of ourselves without judgement. Being mindful helps us respond to our daily lives in a more calm manner, which benefits our health on all levels- spiritual, emotional, physical, psychological.
We can use mindfulness to create a healthy diet & lifestyle. Paying attention to signs of satiety and hunger, the aromas, flavors and textures of food, chewing slowly and savoring each bite. Learning to recognize how foods make you feel and respecting your inner wisdom will create a healthy and balanced relationship with food and self.
Bauman, E. & Friedlander, J. (2012). Foundations in Nutrition. Penngrove, CA: Bauman College