Setting up a place in your home specifically for dining is simple, free and effective… and has the potential to transform your eating habits. It’s some of the best nutritional advice I’ve ever heard.
By creating a designated spot for eating at home, you are establishing an environment that your mind will associate with food (and mindful, healthy eating). The place you choose should be free from distractions and will become your go-to spot to mindfully nourish and fuel your body. So probably not in front of the TV or your laptop 😉.
I decided to begin using the kitchen table for its intended purpose, thereby establishing a place to slow down and savor my food—and actually pay attention to what I’m consuming. Having an ‘eating zone’ has prevented me from scarfing down food while working and from mindlessly grazing on the couch. And I finally figured out why I crave snacks when watching TV! Even though it now takes me about 20 minutes to finish eating, I am fuller, more satisfied and am breaking the habit of multitasking in front of screens during mealtime.
Ideally, different areas of your home would be designated for various tasks and parts of your day: a place to work, a place to workout, a place to sleep, a place to eat, etc. This can help you form healthy habits, set boundaries and be more present. For example, not working in bed has made it much easier for me to fall asleep. If you have limited space (I completely relate!), you might have to get creative. I have found that utilizing different chairs, places outdoors and/or even finding a designated spot on the floor can work. The more you ‘zone’ your living space, the more you can train your mind to associate particular behaviors with parts of your environment. I’ll eat and cheers to that!