January 2013 archive

How Can It Be So Simple?

When I propose that in order to become more at peace around food and body image that a simple practice of movement and breath slowly followed by getting organized to eat in a way that leaves you feeling well as the main focus, the general reaction is, “It can’t be that simple!”

I was reading a book by a meditation master recently and it said that we should let the mind do it’s thing without interfering with it much – and I thought to myself “It can’t be that simple!”

Well, it is that simple. In a way. The actions that we need to take to find ourselves in a better place are simple. We tend to make them more complicated because doing this supports the story that we have designed and told ourselves for years. This supports our idea that the way are doing things is the (only) way things can work.

It is when we allow ourselves to see our obvious current way of thinking or acting that we can see what isn’t really working. From here, we can allow simple change to happen.

So let us all take a step back and say to ourselves, “Some of my old ways of doing things are not working out. I think I’ll try a new way today. I’ll move and breathe. I’ll walk through my day calmly with a schedule in hand, and I’ll eat in a way that seems useful.” It’s that simple.

And as we observe the fruit of this practice we may be inspired to do it again tomorrow.

May we all live in simple truth.


The Winter Hungries

Fact: It’s winter.

Fact: It’s darker and colder.

Fact: You feel hungrier.

Fact: You are normal.

For the past few weeks my clients have been telling me about their current “lack of motivation”. Upon deeper reflection it turns out that this is really a simple desire for more food and if possible, more comfort food.

You know, things like mashed potatoes, cookies, scones, mac & cheese. This makes sense and it happens to me every year. Come wintertime, I’m ready to start eating a lot more comforting carbs. And the thing is, this is normal. As it gets darker and colder, we go through physiological changes that I call the “winter hungries”.

So what should we do about these hungries? Eat donuts all day until spring? Probably not. Once we acknowledge that these desires and cravings are real, we are halfway there. Our body will be happy with all sorts of warm comforting foods, so we actually have a choice of what to give it. How about french onion soup with a some cheesy toast? Or a warm lightly sweetened dark chocolate cocoa? What about more warm sweet potatoes with our meals?

A great exercise to arrive here is be to sit still for 2 minutes. Take a few full breaths and then make a personal list of comforting foods that you would put on your healthy comfort food list. With a little space and pre-planning, your deeper desire for nourishing winter food can be satisfied in a way that’s both beneficial for your body and your mind.

May we all be held in comfort today,