I love good food and celebrations with family and friends. Which makes Thanksgiving one of my favorite holidays — it serves up both in spades!
But this Thanksgiving, I did something a little different. Rather than filling my belly with the usual feast, I decided to observe a day of fasting, which I followed up with a donation to our local food bank.
That’s right: a no-food Thanksgiving!
Was it difficult to sit at the table with family and friends while they chowed down on my favorite dishes? Of course! But there’s nothing like going without food on a day of holiday indulgence to make you empathize with those who do the same thing every day — without the choice. And it feels good to make a donation for people who might otherwise be without the resources for food, especially during this season of plenty.
The Zen teacher Thich Nhat Hanh teaches that eating mindfully can help us to have greater gratitude for what we have. I found this especially true this month.
Now, I’m not necessarily suggesting that you skip your next holiday dinner. But before you take that bite, allow for some time to be thankful for what you have. Then eat mindfully — you’ll find that it changes your perspective every day of the year!