A deadline approaches, a new project, peers who are working to meet targets, a to-do list that looms over you, and a full calendar. You break for lunch. Walk over to your space for lunch and open up your packed lunch or set out your food in front of you. What occurs to you when you begin to eat? During the course of lunch, what runs through you, a checklist of sorts? A gentle question, I posed for myself. And I decided to go about a lunch experiment.
I sat down to eat lunch, made a little space on my desk, and set out my food on a plate. I allowed myself to feel excited about the process, as a child would. Here, I share with you the steps I walked through:
Step 1: I looked at my food. I noticed how my dal was dull yellow, the seasoning fresh, green herbs tossed on top. Rice, fluffed in a haphazard circle on a plate. Freckled papad and vegetable curry that resembled a medley of color.
Step 2: I tried to consciously think about what my lunch tasted like. I realized my dal was saltier than usual, my vegetable curry was reminiscent of a neighbor’s, and the rice, finally perfected. I allowed myself to experience the texture and taste of my food.
Step 3: I asked myself how I felt after I swallowed. I consciously processed what it felt like to eat and the after-taste.
Lunch ended, at its usual time. However, I felt different. More grounded, in ways. A sense of calm washed over me. Perhaps, your experience will be starkly different from my own. Will you need to find your steps, or make a list? No. You are allowed to craft your own experiments, allow yourself to discover what works for you.
I circle back to my question.
“How do I pack moments of stillness into my routine? Can I find ways to create a safe space of lunchtime?”
On mindfulness, writes Thich Nhat Han:
“When we are mindful, deeply in touch with the present moment, our understanding of what is going on deepens, and we begin to be filled with acceptance, joy.”
My lunch experiment was to hold space for myself, to build mindfulness in the simpler ways that seemed accessible to me.
Manah Wellness is an employee engagement and wellbeing brand that provides innovative tools and professional support to businesses of all sizes. Founded by wellbeing experts and seasoned entrepreneurs, the company has an experienced team of psychologists and professionals who support individuals and teams with preventive, proactive, and personalized solutions for emotional and mental health, wellness, and professional growth. Manah empowers employees to track, assess, and understand their wellbeing, and how it changes over time. It also enables leaders to make more informed decisions with aggregated and anonymous data.
Manah has supported employees at more than 50 organizations with high levels of employee engagement, and positive feedback from employees on their improved wellbeing. Whether your goal is to lend wellness support to specific team members or to build a company culture that promotes emotional well-being, Manah Wellness has the virtual tools and expertise to support your journey. Get in touch with our team of qualified mental health professionals to discuss your organizational goals, and be part of a growing workplace wellbeing community with Manah."
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