Saturday, May 10, 2014

Food and the retreat environment Part I

I learn and relearn good things about myself when I go on retreat. This time I did a lot of observing of myself around food. I haven't gotten off sugar completely but I've had some abstinent days and reined myself in (teaching myself to think and decide about all food I eat each time I eat). Here are my observations.

At home:

  • I eat my meals mostly alone, with one or two exceptions a week.
  • I fix my own food and often eat similar things a few days in a row. 
  • At lunch, I read while I eat. 
  • At dinner, I watch a movie.
  • I spend about 10 minutes eating a meal.
  • I go to the gym (3x week) and walk (2-3x week) on a schedule.
  • I walk alone, sometimes with music, sometimes not.
  • I work until 7 most nights, watch TV or read in the evenings.
  • I occasionally get to the studio.
  • I write 45-60 minutes a day most days, but that's all the time I can spend. 
  • I am doing things I don't mind doing between meals.
  • I have a pressured and driven sense of time. 
  • I snack a lot and wander into the kitchen looking for treats. 

On retreat:

  • I eat lunch and dinner with others.
  • I only prepare two of 13 meals; somebody else does the rest.
  • We chat at lunch and sometimes stay at the table for 30-45 minutes.
  • We spend a long time over dinner, often continuing discussions from our pre-dinner circle. 
  • I walk more often and walk with someone else and talk about things.
  • I walk when I feel like it or when someone asks me to walk with them.
  • I play cards and interact with other people in the evenings.
  • I don't do art work usually but if I do, I do it with others.
  • I can write all day if I want to.  
  • I have a spacious schedule.
  • I am doing things I love between meals.
  • I forget about food between meals.

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