Ayurveda has a saying: "When you eat standing up, death looks over your shoulder." That strikes me as especially dire because it's a bad habit of mine. I'll eat half my lunch while I'm standing at the counter making it and half my dinner while I'm cleaning up the kitchen. I'll grab a few nuts and eat them on the way to the laundry room or a few crackers as I head out the door. I'm a roving nibbler of the worst order. In a traditional hunter/gatherer society, I'd be the one who returned home with an empty basket every time because I ate all the berries as I was walking along.
Last week, I tried to break the habit...or at least put a dent in it. My rule was that I could only eat while I was sitting at my dining table. Frankly, this was not my most successful endeavor--partly because of a family circumstance that threw me off my schedule and stressed me out, and partly because this eating-on-the-go habit is more deeply ingrained in me than I imagined.
I'm not a drive-through person, so eating in the car isn't an issue, but apparently anywhere in my house is fair game. (Except the bathroom, because ewww.) The ridiculous thing is that it somehow feels more efficient to eat when I'm doing other things. Multitasking, you know. So, even with a concerted effort to pull up a chair every time I put food in my mouth, I probably only remembered to do it about 60 percent of the time.
When I did remember, I usually felt pretty good about it. Sitting down allowed me to be much more mindful, and I'm sure I consumed fewer unnecessary calories, too. But it was occasionally a little irritating, as if I had not death looking over my shoulder but a nosy little hall monitor telling me to slow down, there's no fire.
I would love to say that this is a slam-dunk Take It, that I saw the error of my ways and will now sit, relax, and enjoy each morsel of food, but this one is going to take some time. At least now, though, I'm more aware of it, and sometimes that's half the battle.