In SAVOR, we share a classic Zen story about a man riding a horse. The horse is galloping quickly, and it appears that the rider is urgently heading somewhere important. A bystander along the road calls out, "Where are you going?" The rider replies, "I don't know! Ask the horse!"
Does this sound familiar to you? Do you find yourself rushing through eating or through daily activities as though you are on auto-pilot? Do you find yourself in a rut, always responding in the same way to your surroundings? Do you act without thinking, without taking a fresh look at the situation and deciding whether you truly want to do what you are about to do?
Some examples might be…soothing yourself after a stressful day with a bowl of ice cream, because it is in the fridge…coming home exhausted and collapsing on the couch in front of the television….overeating at the restaurant, because the portions are so large and you always clean your plate.
Buddhists refer to this force of habit as our “habit energy.” Try acquainting yourself with your habit energy—or habit energies, as may be the case. What are they? When do they occur? Knowing your habit energy is an important step towards helping you change, so that you can reach your goal of a healthier weight—or any other goals that you may set for yourself.
All the best,