Day 2: Mindful Body Meditation #healthiermechallenge

That’s a meditation you can do whenever you feel disconnected from your body and the five senses.  It invites you to observe these senses: smell, taste, sight and sound. I found it important to share it at the beginning of this challenge to bring back focus to mindful eating. At times of stress and chaos, we can find ourselves eating mindlessly without paying attention to the taste, smell and nutrition each food brings us. We find ourselves bingeing on junk, on food that we normally would not eat, just to fill up a void ignoring hunger and satiety cues.

This exercise will bring our attention to the objects that surround us, to the food that we are eating…

Before you begin this meditation, bring a natural object ( a paper, leaf, flower, rock…) to observe during the exercise. Bring also a piece of fruit that you will eat all as well. Since it is autumn, apples are in season so they make a natural choice, but you choose whatever you please.

meditation -seated

Choose a comfortable seated meditation position (in lotus, half-lotus, cross-legged or simply seated in a chair with a straight back). Bring your focus to your breath and allow your body and mind to start relaxing for a few minutes. Focus on your breath and notice every inhalation and exhalation.

Move your focus now from your breath to your upper lip and feel the energy passing from your lip to another part of your body, whether it is your knee, neck or maybe your buttocks on the pillow (or chair or ground). Try to focus solely on this sensation without labeling it as comfortable or not. Do you feel tension, stiffness, or pain?  Does the feeling change or does it stay constant? If you feel your mind wandering, bring back the focus on the sensation in your body.

Stay focused on that part of your body and try to stay neutral. If you feel pain for instance, take note of your emotion but don’t react to it.

Move your attention to your beating heart inside your chest. Narrow down your focus to the arteries and veins and feel the blood circulating in and out your heart to your body. Then notice if your heart is beating faster or slower.

Now, feel the energy throughout your body: your neck, your arms, your hands, your thighs, your legs, your feet. Feel the energy in your spine, passing through your back and to the front to your torso. Do not label your feelings as positive or negative. Just observe them.

Slowly open your eyes and look at the object you had brought for the session. Observe its color, its shape, its texture. Try not to label it as “leaf” or “flower”.. Just look at it and try to notice its every single detail.

Close your eyes back again and listen. Listen for a few minutes to the sounds that surround you, to the sounds that are near and those that are distant, and to the rhythm of your breath. Do not label these sounds as pleasant or annoying. Just listen.

Open your eyes. Take the piece of fruit in your hand and smell it. Then take a bite of that fruit. Chew it slowly. Focus on the feeling of your tongue, your teeth and your throat as you swallow the food. Try to let go off all emotions related to that fruit. If you feel any emotions rising, take note and then let them go and bring back your focus to the simple sense of taste.

For finishing up your meditation session, close your eyes again and bring back focus to your breath for a few minutes.

After the challenge, I would also try this meditation with a cookie instead of a fruit, and then note the difference in feelings when having each.

Adapted from Entrez dans la pratique de meditation by Madonna Gauding

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How was cleaning your pantry task?

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