Mindfulness…Living in the Moment

18 04 2016

We have a difficult time being present with our thoughts. Often time those thoughts get overwhelming, as we have so much to do, and too little time. Being more efficient with our time may be a good solution to help decrease overall stress and improve decision-making dont just look.pngprocesses. Mindfulness expert Jon Kabat-Zinn has described mindfulness as “paying attention to the present moment with intention, while letting go of judgment, as if our life depends on it”. The present is the only real moment we have. Mindfulness is an incredible tool that can help us understand, tolerate, and deal with emotions in healthy ways. It helps us to alter our habitual responses by pausing and consciously choosing how we act. When we are mindful, we experience our life as we live it. We taste the food we are eating, we recognize the thoughts we are having. In doing so, we learn how our minds work, and we are better able to label thmindfulnesse thoughts and feelings we are having, instead of allowing them to overpower us and dictate our behavior.  By being pro-active rather than reactive, the amount of control we have increases, improving the likelihood of better decisions.

 

 

Here are some simple ways to be mindful regarding food:

  • Am I hungry…or perhaps thirsty or bored?
    • Try to drink a large glass to water and taking a quick 2 minute walk to the mailbox or the office down the hall.
  • During a meal, put your fork down half way through for 1-2 minutes. By doing so, you allow your brain time to catch up to your body. You may already be full, but don’t even realize it yet!
  • Focus on drinking more water during a meal, rather than simply eating less. By having a target in mind, you are less likely to be obsessed with the amount of food you are eating.
  • Ask yourself, will this meal or snack bring me closer to my health goals, or push me further away?
    • By giving yourself just a moment to ponder your decision, your choice may change. You are not saying you CAN’T have the meal or snack you have chosen, but at least you are considering the pros and cons before indulging.

 

By Stephanie R. McWilliams, M.A., Health Behavior Counselor

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