Your Best Breakfast: 7 Steps to a More Mindful Breakfast
By Rachel Chemerynski
It’s undeniably a chaotic, fast-paced, scary world out there (well, most of the time). We rush through nearly everything–from hot dates to lunch breaks—barely taking time to pause, let alone simply breathe. Don’t let your breakfast, arguably the most important meal of the day, get placed on the back burner, too. We’ve got 7 simple steps to help you transition toward a more mindful breakfast (that even the busiest souls can make time for!).
1. Unplug. Do you sleep with your phone? Do you spend far too much time on social media? From iPhones and laptops to Instagram and Pinterest, we’re pretty much “plugged in” 24/7. Well, we’re telling you to disconnect from technology with a digital detox. If not for the entire day, at the very least make it a point to unplug for breakfast! Breakfast is the first opportunity to fuel and nourish your body (ultimately breaking the fast). Be sure you dedicate this time for yourself to simply be at one with your meal without all the other distractions.
2. Slow down. Why are we always in such a rush, especially when it comes to our a.m. routine? Scarfing down a bagel and coffee while fighting road rage is an everyday scenario for many. This week, try to make the time to slow down and thoroughly enjoy your meal. What does your food taste like? How does it smell? What type of texture do you prefer? Slowing down allows you to greater appreciate the food on your plate, while satisfying your mind, body, and soul. Pressed for time? Try these easy and healthy breakfast options.
3. Sip on lemon water. Whether you drink mineral water or tap water, we all know how vital it is to stay hydrated. But did you know that starting your morning off with warm lemon water can give you an extra boost? Not only does it taste great, but this popular Ayurvedic technique is known to improve digestion, support the lymph system, boost immunity, and create a cleaner complexion. Not a fan of lemon? There’s nothing like starting the day with a cup of hot tea!
4. Chew on this: Are you really taking the time to chew your food properly? While it sounds like a no-brainer, it’s something so many of us fail to do, especially when we’re rushing to get to work or get the kids ready for school. (Think: inhaling a breakfast sandwich while drying your hair with two minutes to spare.) Thoroughly chewing your food not only aids with digestion (thanks to digestive enzymes) and nutrient absorption, but it even helps wean off that not-so-pleasant gas. At your next meal, pay attention to how you chew your food; be sure to breathe, chew, and swallow with each bite. (Try these new healthy breakfast ideas.)
5. Brain dump. Do you feel like your mind simply never turns off? One of my favorite things to do right before breakfast is a “brain dump”; that is, unloading everything on my mind: the good, the bad, and the ugly. Think of it as a master to-do list for all of your crazy thoughts! This way, you’ll be able to enjoy your breakfast in peace without all that extra “noise” going on in your head.
6. Silence your mind. What better time to set aside for deep breathing than right upon waking, when both the mind and body are still? If you’re new to meditation, check out our top stress-free meditation tips. We also love these simple breathing techniques from Dr. Jim Nicolai of Miraval Resort & Spa for the ultimate relaxation.
7. Write gratitude notes. Do you take time to reflect on what you’re grateful for? Before taking your first bite of the day, practice writing down (or reciting) one thing that you’re grateful for. You’d be surprised how enlightening it can feel, while starting your day off on a positive note. If you’re looking for further guidance, we recommend Gabrielle Bernstein’s latest book, May Cause Miracles, as one of the underlying themes is—you guessed it—gratitude.
How can you make your breakfast experience more mindful?
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This post was written to help you embrace the “Change My Breakfast” pledge, presented by Travaasa, for Wellness Week! From March 11 through 17, make your week well with valuable wellness tips, free classes and events, and exclusive deals and offers. Plus, enjoy a free $25 Wellness Week Gift Card when you purchase a $25 SpaFinder Wellness Gift Card during Wellness Week (March 11-17). Learn more about Wellness Week 2013!
You might also like:
Change My Breakfast: 11 Healthy Spa-Inspired Breakfast Recipes
Change My Breakfast: 3 Deliciously Healthy Oatmeal Recipes
5 Surprisingly Tasty Healthy Snacks for Picky Eaters
Swap This for That: Change Your Breakfast with these Healthy Substitutes
The Budget Diet: How to Eat Healthy on a Budget
Rachel Chemerynski is a certified health coach and freelance writer living in Boston, Massachusetts. She is the founder of Healthy Chicks, a wellness community dedicated to inspiring twenty-something women to live happier, healthier, more satisfying lives.
Breakfast image: Flickr, creative commons, geishaboy500; Water image: Flickr, creative commons, DaisySnaps