Learn to control cravings, stress and anxiety through mindful meditation. One group therapy exercise we use at our drug treatment facility is learning how to “live in the moment” when experiencing the taste of chocolate.

At Cornerstone Recovery Center, we help clients develop skills to try and control their thoughts, feelings and emotions. Through individual and group therapy, we provide useful techniques, such as meditation, that empower clients to manage their cravings or when they feel stress or anxiety. These techniques involve learning to consciously relax your mind and body.

The beauty of practicing meditation is that it allows you to “let go” of every day worries and “live in the moment.” We have found that those who meditate regularly report improvements physically, mentally, and spiritually.

If you’ve considered trying mindful meditation but never tried it, here is a fun (and tasty) example of the practice — using everybody’s favorite food … chocolate.

This guided meditation should take around 3-4 minutes. You will need a small bar of chocolate. Approach the exercise with an open mind. There are no rights or wrongs, just individual experiences. When asked questions, be sure to answer the out loud or in your mind.

Today, we will be doing an exercise called Mindfulness and the Art of Chocolate Eating.

Think about the term “mindfulness.” How would you define this word? And what actions come to mind to help you achieve it? –

When most people think of mindfulness, they associate it with being aware—aware of yourself, what’s on your mind and in your heart, as well as your surroundings. But why is being mindful important? – And what does it have to do with addiction? –

Mindfulness is often a tool we use in group and individual therapy sessions as a relapse prevention plan. Being aware of yourself and your surroundings helps to identify your triggers and encourages a constant effort to work on your sobriety. –

Usually, when we eat chocolate, it’s gone before we even know it. But this exercise will have you experience eating chocolate in a different way—a mindful way.

So, before we start, pause this and get yourself a wrapped piece of chocolate.

Consider the wrapped chocolate. What color is it? What does it say? Where did it come from?

Open the chocolate carefully, slowly. Does the wrapper make a sound? Do you feel a sense of anticipation or an urge to immediate put the chocolate in your mouth?

What physical sensations do you have? What emotions are you feeling? Just note them.

Look at the chocolate. Consider its texture, its color, and its weight.

Smell the chocolate. Does the smell trigger any other emotions? Any other senses?

Put the chocolate in your mouth but do not eat it. How does it feel as it melts? Where in your mouth can you taste it? What is the consistency of the chocolate? What is happening with your mouth, teeth, tongue, and lips as the chocolate melts.

Move the chocolate around in your mouth. Does the area of taste change? Does the taste itself change? What is happening to the chocolate? How do you feel?

You can go ahead and chew and swallow the chocolate if you haven’t done so already. Focusing on the sensations. Is there a lingering taste? How do you feel physically? How do you feel emotionally? Take a little time to consider the experience.

How is this different from any other time you’ve eaten chocolate?

Feel free to contact us with some feedback. If you want more information aboutCornerstone’s comprehensive treatment programs and therapies like mindful meditations, please contactour admissions counselor online or call 888-711-0354 today. All communications with our staff are confidential.

Adapted from: http://www.mindspace.org.uk.