APA addresses farmer stress

In case you missed this information, which I shared on social media earlier this fall, the American Psychological Association has been focusing explicitly on supporting farmers and farmworkers, both during this pandemic year and beyond.

Many of us – and especially frontline workers, might find these stress management resources helpful, as well.

Mindful eating for families

These days, many school-aged families are juggling remote learning schedules with other demanding work/life responsibilities, so finding time to enjoy regular meals together can be difficult. As the working parent of a fifth grader with special needs, I get it. Really, I do. The good news is that mindful eating requires only a few minutes, at most, in order to reap its benefits. Mindful eating practices can gradually be integrated into your family’s day – and provide you with a chance for your own short-and-sweet version of “recess.” Because play is good for adult mind/body health, too.

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APA Explores Nature Boost

Check out this April 2020 article from the American Psychological Assocation, on the positive benefits of nature exposure. From its summary:

  1. “Spending time in nature is linked to both cognitive benefits and improvements in mood, mental health and emotional well-being.
  2. Feeling connected to nature can produce similar benefits to well-being, regardless of how much time one spends outdoors.
  3. Both green spaces and blue spaces (aquatic environments) produce well-being benefits. More remote and biodiverse spaces may be particularly helpful, though even urban parks and trees can lead to positive outcomes.”

Especially in the midst of these difficult times, connect with nature – virtually or in person, even for a few moments, at least several times per week if possible.

Excerpt – inquiry into hunger

Below you’ll find a short clip from a previous SAVOR Thursdays webinar, exploring mindfulness of hunger.

This Thursday I’ll be featuring a slideshow of community gardens and some of my own edible garden highlights, as we review the recent growing seasons here in the Pacific Northwest. We’ll also touch briefly on the value of teaching children about the different growing seasons, to plant seeds of food wisdom in our next generation of food citizens and mindful eaters.

And next week, I’ve changed the schedule to offer a popular topic for my last free webinar of the Fall – back by popular demand, Mindful Eating for Families. Don’t miss it!

Additional resources for CHTA attendees

While I won’t include my full Powerpoint from this morning’s presentation, Digging into Our Food and Amending Our Soil with Mindful Eating, below you’ll find a few snapshots of slides we weren’t able to go into due to time constraints, highlights worth reviewing, and follow-up to several much-appreciated questions.

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Feast on your life

In an episode of On Being, Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction founder Jon Kabat-Zinn (one of my first teachers as a new mindfulness-based psychotherapist) reads aloud Feast on Your Life, by the acclaimed poet Derek Walcott.

I thought of this poem while I making final updates to my Mindful Eating presentation for the Canadian Horticultural Therapy Association’s annual conference tomorrow.

I hope you enjoy the poem. Better yet, please savor it. Remember to “take in the good,” including self-compassion, in all areas of your life – including with food.

Savor the body in movement

How do you find opportunities to move when you’re sequestered inside due to wildfire smoke or other weather events? During times like these, it’s helpful to get creative. As I’ve previously said in sessions with psychotherapy clients, we need to defuse the dreaded “e-word” of exercise (and its shame-filled baggage) and find pleasurable, mindful ways to move our bodies. To simply savor that we have bodies to move, and to give our precious bodies a brief reprieve from a life filled with so much sitting in front of screens.

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Choosing a compassionate response

I’ve posted this quote from Viktor Frankl previously, and as someone who worked as a mindfulness-based psychotherapst for eighteen years, his words come to mind again and again. Especially now. We can’t control or deny (nor should we) the many stressful events of 2020, but we can choose our response.

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Available to watch now – intro to mindful eating

From last week’s webinar, a 30-minute introduction to mindful eating, which includes a guided exercise. Freely offered. Please enjoy and share as appropriate.

If you haven’t visited the SAVOR Project on Instagram, please consider following me on that platform. In the future, I’ll continue to decrease my Facebook presence but share free (or occasionally, low-cost) resources via this blog and on my IG feed.

Stay safe and well, friends.