Mindfulness is a non-judgmental awareness of the present moment.
If we are trying to eat healthfully but slip up once in a while, it’s okay.
Because tomorrow is another day. In fact, every moment is a new opportunity to make a fresh start.
So if you’re like many Americans and see yourself downward spiraling after eating that cookie that you “really shouldn’t have,” instead of throwing away your nutrition plan for the rest of the day and eating more empty-calorie foods, you can simply make a different choice going forward.
There are no “good” or “bad” foods. A lot of it has to do with our intention. If we eat a piece of chocolate cake, savoring each bite and feeling truly satisfied and nourished, that is a different experience from eating a piece of chocolate feeling out of control of our emotions and wanted to take ourselves out of those uncomfortable feelings.
And even if we do eat cake in a way to help manage emotions, that itself isn’t bad either. It’s simply feedback.
We can ask ourselves, “What do I need now?” “What am I seeking by eating this cake, and is there another way to achieve it?” Food is always accessible—and in more recent years, tv and social media is too. Sometimes we lean on them as emotional crutches, and that’s OKAY. But we can also think about what other options we have, like calling/texting a friend or listening to our favorite playlist.
The idea is that we are witnessing ourselves. Understanding where we are, without judgment. Getting rid of shame and replacing it with compassion.