What is Mindful eating? It is the practice of connecting to the experience of eating, not just repeating the motions of bite & chew, bite & chew without consideration of the actual experience. Mindful eating is a practice I work with clients to accomplish and master so that intuitive eating is achieved. Intuitive eating is the ability to identify nutrition and satiation through the messaging of our own bodies’ reactions. Believe it or not, there can come a day where you look at a plate of cookies and do not desire it, and in fact, the thought may even turn you off completely.
Whether you work remotely from your own home, or on the 28th floor of a downtown skyscraper, staying healthy on the job can be challenging. People who work in an office tend to box themselves into a small space around their desk and computer. They often share eating spaces with others, work under fluorescent lights, don’t get fresh air or natural sunlight most of the day, and are often in a hunched, sitting position most of the day staring at a computer or talking on the phone. Office jobs provide many benefits, too, and if you picked the right industry for yourself, then you’re probably very happy with your actual work. People who work in office environments usually co-work with a team with which members often share talents, drive and/or or passion. Office and team environments can be healthy in that it presents us with challenges, which become learning and growth opportunities. Mentally, this keeps us sharp.
When I think about Easter, I’m reminded of my childhood and how we’d squirm around in church anticipating the moment we get home to tear the house apart in search of our baskets. We’d pull up into the driveway and my Mom would turn around and face all four of us in the car; simultaneously unbuckling our seatbelts in such madness it sounded like a stampede of horses running on pavement. She’d tell us to sit back down because she had to go inside and “make sure the bunny came”. Worst liar ever. But we didn’t care. The amount of sugar we were about to destroy left us with little room to worry about who arranged and left the basket.
“Our environment, the world in which we live and work, is a mirror of our attitudes and expectations.” Earl Nightingale
Conditioned beliefs can be one of the biggest obstacles interfering with our health and fitness goals, believe it or not. They are also some of the hardest to uncover and change, but it can be done and, in my opinion, should be the FIRST thing you do before venturing off on a weight loss journey or targeting specific health goals.
Here we go! Next month every candy company on planet earth begins to make a killing due to some skyrocketing sales for Halloween. And while they are making millions of dollars, you are beginning your downward spiral of holiday stress and weight gain. A lot of people assume this starts with Thanksgiving because we literally eat until we hate ourselves, crying in a fetal position with our pants unbuttoned. And, ultimately, the real blame gets put on Christmas because it has all the traditions that last the entire month of December: marshmallow snowmen, hot cocoa, eggnog, alcohol, baking cookies and decorating gingerbread houses, parties and family gatherings etc etc yada-yada. All of which you HAVE to do because it’s “tradition” and you simply can’t have a true, genuine holiday experience without all of the above. And, per the usual, Christmas and December get the blame… and around the corner its the savior of all holidays; New Years Eve. The magical time-stamp of promise and hope that the layers will miraculously be shed if you make a goal at midnight…. so you allow yourself to make excuses until then. But guess what man, you don’t gain your “winter coat” in December. Do you really want to know how this all starts?
Seasons approach us with so much promise, and then they’re gone in the blink of an eye. Spring promises me gorgeous weather, gardening, sunshine, flowers and more time spent outside. Summer promises me happiness of sunray goose-pimples, a nice tan, and extra time with the kids. Fall offers the promise of pumpkin recipes and a relief from the heat with it’s cooler evenings. Winter teases me with anticipation for my favorite holiday and spending time with family. But they all arrive slowly, and then leave so fast. I feel this way every season. So many mixed feelings! We break the year up into “quarterlies”, seasons, school years/breaks, and/or holidays. And we spend each part trying to make the best of it by doing everything it could possibly offer us. By the time September rolls around, for instance, we have emptied our mental, physical and emotional stores of energy and we are OVER the packing, unpacking, road trips, airports, house guests, volunteer projects, kids home from school acting like jumping beans 24/7, camps, weddings, and for a lot of families; moving and/or catching up on all those household projects and repairs. Not to mention extra energy drained from hotter temperatures outdoors. Yet we spent January through May counting down the days to summer! Because – in the summer- we can relax! Right?
It is estimated that nearly 80% of adults in America suffer adrenal insufficiency. In other words: chronic and extreme stress that breaks down the the natural cycles of hormone production thus leading to a long list of issues including a crapped-out metabolism, weight gain, headaches, insomnia, anxiety, cravings, muscle cramping, fatigue, and suppressed immune system. If you have ever felt that your health is on a downward spiral and you cannot get control of it, you could possibly be suffering from chronic stress. Can you think of WHAT causes you the most stress? Try writing down a list including traffic, long lines, working late, relational conflict, pollution, neighbor’s dog crapped in your yard, gained 4lbs, kids are too loud, ripped a hole in your favorite jeans, burned dinner, stubbed your toe, friends blew you off, your favorite tv show didn’t record, only got 4 hours of sleep, you feel the flu coming on, rent is due, gas prices went up….