To savor means to “taste and enjoy completely.”
In a recent article in Good Housekeeping, a weight-loss speaker wrote about slowing down to savor your food. She said that when she conducts a workshop, she gives participants a paper cup with one corn chip, two raisins and a small piece of chocolate. She then walks the audience through tasting each food, one at a time. They smell it, observe it, feel it in their mouths, and of course, taste it. Participants discover things like they really don’t like the food, the reason why they eat the food (salty, crunchy, etc) or that the small amount was sufficient.
I heard the premise of French Women Don’t Get Fat is similar: stop and actually enjoy what you’re eating.
In an age of being on-the-go, drive thru, grab something in between rushing from one place to the next, who has time to enjoy food? And yet, here we are one of the fattest countries in the world. Number 9, to be exact (that’s out of 194, in case you lost count). I agree with many experts that this has to be part of the reason.
Isn’t that the same with most of life? We rush around from one thing to the next, trying to get to the next “level” of whatever it is that’s important to us – job, income bracket, social circle, spiritual level, etc that we fail to actually enjoy what’s right in front of us. We complain about what we don’t have, yet fail to appreciate how much we already do. Not that we should become complacent and aspire for nothing, but how much enjoyment do we miss because we simply don’t take the time?
I’ve been trying to start teaching this concept to my daughter. I find that as she knows something she enjoys is about to end, she begins complaining about it or asking for more before it’s even over. I gently tell her that she’s missing out on enjoying the very thing she’s asking for because she’s so preoccupied anticipating life without it. But I realize I also need to learn the very same lesson.
So I move forward trying to savor every moment and every blessing. And I think I’ll find it’s much easier to be content than I realize.
Photo: Contented Cat (2007)