Practicing Mindfulness with Scrambled Eggs
Once again, I had a different post prepared for today but of course life always seems to get in the way of our plans. I promise you’ll learn all about energy drinks tomorrow!
I felt compelled to write about what happened to me last night– a pretty big moment for me.
I got home from class and back to Brooklyn on the later side, around 8:30pm. I went to my favorite vegetarian café to pick up some vegetables for a late dinner, but unfortunately due to the late hour they were all gone (and probably for the better because who knew how long those veggies were sitting out in the open). Pissed, hungry, and grumpy (Matt and I call the combination of grumpy + hungry = grungry), I trudged home and started rooting around for something to make for dinner.
If you recall, in an earlier post I mentioned that I have a rule that I don’t east past 8pm, or 3 hours before bed. (I just feel so much better in the morning when I have an empty stomach—breakfast tastes so much yummier!) But, it was 8:45pm, I was hungry, and I decided I wanted to eat anyway. I figured the easiest and quickest meal to make was scrambled eggs with some purslane from my CSA, so I went ahead and made it.
Upon sitting down to the dining table, I paused for a moment, looked at my plate of food and literally asked myself out loud: “Amanda, do you really want this?”
“Yes, of course I want it,” I answered. “I’m hungry, I’ve had a long day, it’s not that much food, and it’s only protein. I think I’ll be OK in the morning”
“But remember your guidelines you created,” my inner-self answered. “Do you really NEED to eat this food” (Mind you, I’m still talking aloud)
So I looked down at my food, and I mean, really looked at it. Noticed the texture of the eggs, the smell, the yellow of the yolks and the green of the purslane. Did I really want this food in my body?
And as if by magic, I suddenly got up from the table, walked to the garbage, and threw it out. The entire meal I made, into the garbage. I went to the coffee maker and made myself some teeccino with rice milk instead. I stopped for a moment, thought about what I did, and a big smile came across my face.
What did I do? I stopped. I paused. I slowed down. I actually listened to what my body wanted instead of running on automatic pilot like I usually do. I took the time to think about how I would feel in 2 hours when I went to bed and how my body would be digesting the food as I slept. And I considered the state of my being 8 hours from then, when I woke up to eat breakfast and would feel bloated from the meal.
In the past, I probably would have gotten home, quickly eaten the meal, and most likely topped it off with something sweet, like chocolate. Again, auto-pilot. But this time was different. I practiced mindfulness and honored my body and my commitment to feeling my best.
So what can this tale do for you?
Remind you to listen to your body. Talk to yourself (it’s OK to sound like a crazy person!), ask if you really want what you are going to put in your mouth. Are you eating it for the right reasons? Are you honoring the commitments you made to yourself? And is that the exact food that is going to nourish you at that moment? I actually realized I had wanted something warm because I had eaten cooling salads and vegetables all day, and my body just craved warmth, despite the heat. I didn’t need the food to satisfy me. The warm drink was all I needed.
Be mindful of what you are doing when you are doing it. It’s a lot of work but the benefits you reap are well worth it. My body is really thanking me this morning, and I know yours will too.
Where in your life do you need to slow down and be more mindful?