The other day I gave in to a junk food craving. After a day of clean eating—kale smoothies, quinoa vegetarian chili, fresh fruit—a little voice said “come on, you know you want to” and I was seduced. Before I knew it I was munching on balsamic and pepper kettle chips and nuclear-orange cheesies. The next morning I woke up feeling bloated and unpleasant. Hmm, no kidding. Like my Granny often said, “Garbage in, garbage out.”
So how does my lapse in compassionate eating relate to mindfulness? Well, for both mind and body, you are what you eat. What we consume mentally influences how the mind feels—pleasant and happy or roiling with indigestion. Imagine you are facing a difficult work problem. If you focus on unpleasant “what-if” scenarios, anxiety arises. If you dwell instead on possible solves for the difficult issue, you feel calm and empowered. We all want to be happy. We all want emotional and mental well-being. But are we practicing conscious mental consumption?
Try it right now. Think for a moment about what you are feeding your mind right now. Are you worrying about a future event? Chewing on a bone of contention from the past? Watching a celebrity gossip show? Perhaps you are watching an iridescent juvenile hummingbird feed on the newly opened purple iris in your back yard. Maybe you are musing about what to have for lunch. Once you have brought awareness to what the mind is currently munching on, gently notice how your mind is reacting. Is your current mind-snack wholesome or unwholesome? Continue reading the full article at mindful.org: Beware of Mental Junk Food–You Are What You Eat.