“Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment”; Buddha’s thoughts on mindfulness.
When was the last time you sat down to eat with no distractions? When was the last time you savoured every bite and stopped eating before you were full? If you’re reading this while eating right now then stop, put down the fork and when you’ve finished the article, go and mindfully enjoy your food.
We live in a fast paced world full of distractions and we rarely spend any time in the present moment. Most of our time is spent either regretting the past or worrying about the future but the reality is the only time something can be done is now. Apply this to every meal and every training session and you won’t go far wrong if fat loss and health are part of your goals.
In Eckhart Tolle’s book, “The Power of Now”, he mentions that many people partake in extreme sports and activities to be in the now, in other words to feel they are fully present in the moment. Whilst fighting we tend to experience extreme focus, not thinking about anything else but the matter at hand. We are 100% focused on the task. We are not thinking about the next round, the previous round, maybe not even the next punch, we are truly in the moment. Applying this amount of focus to other tasks is a great way to improve productivity, training focus and to fully enjoy nutritious and healthy foods.
Here are a few simple action steps to try
- When you eat, just eat – No emails, Facebook, TV or reading.
- Taste your food, enjoy the texture, flavour, smells and feelings – chew slowly.
- Put your fork down after every bite.
- Think about the journey of the food from nature to your plate.
- Think about the health benefits the food is giving you.
- When you train focus on every rep as if it were your last one.
- During each rep think about the muscles contracting and growing.
- Use your rests to refocus and think about your goals and the reason you are actually training.
- Incorporate meditation or mindfulness daily into your life, even if only for 10 minutes.
So next time you sit down to eat try to put these tips into action and see for yourself how much better food tastes and how much more enjoyable the experience is. Next time you visit the gym try to apply as much focus as possible to every single rep and see how much more you can get out your workout. Try to apply it to as many different tasks you can throughout the day and reap the benefits of enjoying the present moment.