This is one of our most meaningful human rituals and yet we don’t always treat it as such: eating together should, in part, mean waiting for the other person or people around the table with you before picking up your fork. It goes far deeper than just good manners.
Awareness is key: it is important to realize and recognize together that we will soon be sharing something with people whom, usually, we hold dear to us.
Too often we sit down at the table and people start eating without observing if everyone has all they need, without appreciating the moment together. Lost as we are in our thoughts and to-do lists, we may not even realize we have started eating prematurely ourselves. How can we avoid these all-too-common contemporary experiences and get back to really eating together?
I’ll be providing some tips on mindful, slower living, and concrete tips for introducing concepts like this into your everyday routines.
My first tip is table-based: take a moment—just a moment!—with your fellow diners before beginning to eat
as a way of acknowledging the meaning of sharing a meal together. You could give thanks together for the person who prepared the food; take a few seconds to sound off about the scents and colors of the food before you; or simply look each other in the eyes to express gratitude for this peaceful and nourishing moment of rest.
Eating together—really together—is one of the most beautiful “nutrients” that exists.