… but I really wanted some cake!

As unlikely as this sounds (coming from someone who is a mindfulness enthusiast and a chef) I’ve never really wanted to explore mindful eating as a stand-alone practise. My predominant experience, being on the receiving end of this exercise, is to feel increasing frustration as I watch my meal getting cold. Meanwhile, the teacher talks reverently (and very slowly) about how mindfulness can enhance our enjoyment of the food we are about to eat. Rather than be encouraged to stay mindful of my feelings (which may have something to teach me) I am directed to delight in the food’s visual magnificence, and to contemplate all the people involved in preparing our breakfast and to feel gratitude. All I can think about is how much more grateful I would feel if the porridge was hot. And as a chef I can promise you, the best compliment is when guests tuck in with gusto.

It can be easy to lampoon ‘McMindfulness’ at times. When you’ve had a taste of the profound potential of mindfulness, being subjected to a “I know, let’s add on a mindful eating exercise to today’s lunch!” is as disappointing as limp salad that’s sat around for 20 unnecessary minutes. But I’m willing to re-think this and it’s been a very fruitful investigation.

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