Have an affair with a Kiss!

by Dr. Ellen Cullman, FLT Columnist

One of my favorite Valentine’s candies is Hershey’s Kisses. For me, the only way to eat them is “mindfully.” Eating mindfully allows you to pay attention to the nuances of flavor and texture, yet there is a bonus in the process. It also increases your emotional pleasure of the food you are eating and results in eating less. I know it seems counterintuitive that mindfully indulging in your favorite treats essentially promotes eating less. But it does!

Try the mindful eating exercise below. The title says it all – Have an affair with a Kiss! Take turns with a friend mindfully reading the script while the other eats a Hershey’s Kiss. Allow plenty of time to complete each step before moving on to the next. Then switch roles so you each get a turn reading and eating. How was your affair?

Have an affair with a Kiss!

1. Select a kiss!

2. Sit down in a calm, quiet space.

3. Close your eyes and breath, holding your kiss.

4. Shhhhh…just breathe, just observe…that’s all.

5. Say “I calm my body, I calm my mind.”

6. Open your eyes and open your kiss – s-l-o-w-l-y.

7. Observe, smell, feel your kiss in your hands.

8. Place your kiss on your tongue.

9. Observe your experience as the chocolate melts.

10. No chewing yet!!!! Just observe, notice, be aware.

11. Saturate every taste bud with the flavor and, again, observe.

12. Now you can chew, s-l-o-w-l-y and observe again.

13. Mindfully swallow when you are ready.

14. Spend a few moments reflecting on your experience. Would you have an affair like this again?

15. Say “Thank you!” to your mind, body, and intuitive spirit for what you learned from this experience. Oh, and thank the chocolate for its existence, too!

I would love to know what you experienced. Did you have increased pleasure, yet ate less? You can email me at the address below or leave a comment at www.firstlocaltoledo.com/columnists/dr-ellen-cullman.

Dr. Cullman welcomes your questions for an upcoming column. To schedule an individual session, learn about mindful eating groups, or sign up for her newsletter, email her at mindfuleatingcoach@gmail.com or call 419-494-7699. Dr. Cullman also plans and conducts workshops, presentations, seminars and personalized retreats teaching mindful eating skills